Showing posts from July, 2016

Throwback : anticipate, fight, repeat

Image - listen, purchase, download In His House now! 

Midweek Musing: Praying as Jesus taught us

This Sunday, I led worship and preached at Bainsford Church, Falkirk. It was a joy to be invited back after leading worship there last year, and telling stories with the Guild earlier this year. 

The story was the prayer that Jesus taught his disciples, and along with a number of congregations around the world, I used the new words I had crafted for Pray the Story in worship. They formed the call to worship and were repeated in the reflection - which I share with you now as the musing for the week, pondering the prayer that Jesus taught us.

What is prayer?
We have this prayer that Jesus taught us, but even then, there is no consensus with the different versions in Luke and Matthew, and the various versions we pray in English. I was surprised that even the old or traditional version prayed in Church of Scotland congregations is different to the old traditional version we prayed when I was growing up in Australia.

But I wonder, are the words that Jesus taught us about praying those spec…

Throwback Thursday - Mercy Qualified

Listen to 'Mercy Qualified'

uncommon joy

pale grey canopy split second gashes of light Nature's laughter deep 
to weeping delight showering upon steamy earth cool relief
throw the curtain back blink warm up for heavy eyes your summer day: made 

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Midweek Musing: Exploring Glory

Earlier this month, I attended a conference called 'Exploring the Glory of God.' This sort of topic is generally favoured by theologians, the scholars who think and write and talk about the character of God, the nature of humanity, creation, etc. They're usually conversations that focus in too tight on the details for someone like me who prefers big pictures, ideas, mystery. So it was a little surprising to me, in anticipation and in the moment - and still is afterwards - that I signed up for such a conference, and as a presenter, what's more.

Actually, it was the idea for a presentation that got me interested in going to this conference. OK, that, and the fact that it was to be held in Durham, England, where my dear friend Ross lives, so it would be a good chance to go and spend time with him, too.

I had preached a sermon not long before the call for papers was sent around, in which I had reflected on the Great Command (Love God, love neighbour - Deuteronomy 6, Mark 1…

Throwback Thursday : Applause

In His House - available now at

Midweek Musing: Sharing wisdom, sharing power

When I share an article that names the dangerous human tendency to value men over women I am not sure the appropriate response from men is 'Oh, how I feel emasculated.'

This week's musing is the result of some weeks of fermentation after just such an interaction.

Such articles as I share from time to time on the way women are viewed and treated in our society are not written and shared to say that being male is somehow bad or wrong, or not in the image of God. These articles are written and shared because many societies have said that to be male is good and not said to be female is good. In fact, we have said, in the history of humankind, man is good, woman is bad.

And then we have gone on to equate any number of dualisms to this good/bad - male/female dichotomy. Let me place them in line with each other

good / bad
male / female
God / human (and men are human, so there's something really odd going on there)
mind / body
soul / body
logic / imagination
rationality / e…

Throwback to this week's album release

'So long Shakespeare' features on my NEW spoken word album IN HIS HOUSE  available now at

Midweek Musing: sheltered and carried by Sacred wings

This week's musing takes the form of the reflection I offered on Sunday morning at Augustine United Church, Edinburgh.

After we heard the story of Jesus in Luke 10:1–10, 16–20, I offered last week's prayer-poem from Pray the Story.

We paused.

I continued the reflection.

He sent them out.
He welcomed them back.

In the gospel narrative this is a one-off sending and welcoming back. Sure, Jesus sends two disciples to get the donkey for his entry to Jerusalem, and again to prepare the Passover meal – but not even after his resurrection does Jesus send the disciples in Luke’s account of the story.

So how do we receive this story, then? Is it simply a one-off, something he literally did just the one time? Or do we read this as an example of the pattern of ministry for the disciples with Jesus – this one story pointing to a practice happening more regularly in their life on the road? It might explain how the stories spread far and wide … I’m imagining.

And I may be imagining it that way be…

Out Now: Spoken word album In His House

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