I am writing this on what seems like the first sunny day for ages, which has come as welcome relief from all the rain of the previous couple of weeks. So much for the great British Summer! Hopefully we will see plenty more sunshine before the shorter, colder, wetter days of autumn and winter draw in. I am often amazed at how weather reporters always seem to be able to say that we are experiencing the hottest, coldest, wettest or driest season since records began regardless of whatever weather we are experiencing.
This is the question that frequently gets asked when a tragedy hits the news headlines. In recent weeks we have grieved at terrorist attacks in London and Manchester. Yet these are just a few of the terrible attacks that take place worldwide on a daily basis many of which never reach our TV screens.
Recently I was in Tesco and noticed a young American couple doing their shopping. What particularly attracted my attention was the man's t-shirt which had the words 'And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us' Heb 12:1. I spoke to them and said that I liked the scripture on the shirt and we struck up a brief conversation in which they commented that I was the first Christian they had met during their time in the UK.
I wonder whether you recognise these words? The come from the prayer Jesus taught us to pray.
Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy name;
Thy kingdom come; thy will be done; on earth as it is in heaven.
And forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation; but deliver us from evil.
For thine is the kingdom, the power and the glory, for ever and ever. Amen.
On Thursday the 8th June the nation goes to the polls again. As the day approaches there is increasing frenzy in the media about the election. Whether it is on our TV screens, printed in the newspapers, and more than ever before through social media channels, commentators and politicians alike are clamouring for our attention and shaping the outcome of the election.
The gospel writers record that during the weeks after Christ’s death and resurrection Jesus appeared to the disciples on many different occasions. In fact the Apostle Paul catalogues many of these resurrection appearances in his letter to the Corinthians, not least an appearance to 500 people at the same time. After a period of 40 days these resurrection appearances come to an abrupt end.