Sunday, November 28, 2010

For the joys and the sorrows...

Preparing a Bible study on Romans 5v1-11 reminded me of a song I rather like by Graham Kendrick:

For the joys and for the sorrows
The best and worst of times
For this moment, for tomorrow
For all that lies behind
Fears that crowd around me
For the failure of my plans
For the dreams of all I hope to be
The truth of what I am

For this I have Jesus
For this I have Jesus
For this I have Jesus, I have Jesus

For the tears that flow in secret
In the broken times
For the moments of elation
Or the troubled mind
For all the disappointments
Or the sting of old regrets
All my prayers and longings
That seem unanswered yet

For the weakness of my body
The burdens of each day
For the nights of doubt and worry
When sleep has fled away
Needing reassurance
And the will to start again
A steely-eyed endurance
The strength to fight and win

"Since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through Him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God. More than that, we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God's love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us. For while we were still weak, at the right time Christ died for the ungodly. For one will scarcely die for a righteous person - though perhaps for a good person one would dare even to die - but God shows His love for us in that while we were still sinner, Christ died for us. Since, therefore, we have now been justified by His blood, much more shall we be saved by Him from the wrath of God."

So, since we have been justified (the hard work), we can face the future, each day, sufferings or joyfulness, because of what Christ has done. And in each day and each moment, I can look forward, knowing that the future is settled, because Christ has justified me. Hallelujah!

The Dream Kitchen

This hilarious little extract came from a recent (November 2010) copy of the Waitrose Kitchen Magazine that I picked up, it rather sums up my kitchen experience.

"In my mind's eye, I always imagined myself making jam and marmalade in a sunlit kitchen, surrounded by gleaming copper pans and gingham squares. In reality, the making of jam in our house is hot, heavy work; the great bubbling pail of sugar-stew liberally seasoned with swear words, and at least one finger or thumb being held under the cold tap for 20 minutes after a run-in with a scalding splodge of syrup. Which refuses to set. And turns the tea towels purple. But who cares? Rose-tinted spectacles come with the territory... Admiring the serried racks of just-made jams, with their wax-circle stoppers and hand-written labels, is one of life's great little pleasures. It's one of the few boxes I've actually ticked in the larder of my dreams, where I shall have trugs loaded with medlars and damsons, or perhaps sloes, quince and elderberries. There'll be demijohns of single-orchard cider, interestingly flavoured cordials and single-estate teas in fragrant wooden caddies. Ooh, and a truckle of cheddar, plus a wedge of varicose stilton and a salted hock of ham, studded with cloves.

None of this exists, mostly because I am not the chatelaine of an Edwardian mansion. My real larder, which is in fact a pull-out kitchen cupboard, boasts a multipack of Hula Hoops, a sorry tin of coconut milk, some desiccated herbs, a collection of lazily sprouting potatoes and an onion (deceased)" - Mimi Spencer, Waitrose Kitchen November 2010.