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Showing posts from November, 2010

True Leadership

Jeremiah 23.1-6 Colossians 1.11-20 Luke 23.33-43
Most years we try to spend a few days in the Lake District. Wherever you walk you can often see a flock of sheep grazing in the fields against a stunning backdrop of beautiful hills. It’s a picture of peace and tranquility. However, on one visit, travelling between Keswick and Ambleside, we met a flock of sheep on the move, sharing the main road with the cars, which is much more dangerous. They were being driven along the road by a thoroughly modern shepherd, riding his quad bike, but ahead of the flock went a tractor with its hazard warning lights flashing to warn approaching traffic to slow down. Here was a case of sheep being cared for by their shepherds - albeit in a very Twenty-First Century way.

What if a sheep got separated from the flock and was all alone on the mountainside? Today sheep hefted on the fells are generally pretty safe, but in the old days they might have fallen prey to wolves, which is why the shepherd might have ne…

I Know That My Redeemer Lives

Job 19.23-27 2 Thessalonians 2:1-5 & 13-17
The other day I went for a very minor hospital procedure. But it did involve being on the operating table under a local anaesthetic, watching on a screen, as someone messed with my heart, and feeling my own surprisingly hot blood spilling out on my thigh. The other patients waiting for the same procedure confessed afterwards that they had been worrying about it. One hadn’t slept all night. It’s reassuring in those circumstances to be able to think to oneself, ‘I know that my Redeemer lives and that, at the last, my eyes shall behold him.’

These words are part of Job’s confession of faith, which comes towards the end of a long argument with his friends about the reasons for his misfortune. Job feels there isn’t any good reason why his life has been turned upside down and he even goes so far as to suggest that if God has a plan then it can’t be a very good one because everything he has been made to endure is undeserved.

Basically, the Book of J…