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Posts Tagged ‘scripture’

A Wide Place on Birmingham New Mainline canal this morning

It’s been a joy to visit the Birmingham Mainline canal to run again this week. I’ve had some time off because I was too enthusiastic when I restarted last time and aggravated my plantar fasciistis. I am now *much* better informed about stretching and starting back after injury or any sort of break, and how rubbish runners should also pay attention to these things. Reminds me of the time I went for a run for the first time ever, many years ago. I didn’t stretch afterwards because I thought that was only for good runners. Couldn’t walk for days. And didn’t run again for about twenty five years.

I’m still listening on my headphones as I run. I’ve been connecting with my Church of England credentials of late and reading and/or listening to around five psalms daily, following the pattern set out in the Book of Common Prayer (here’s a pdf if you’d like to try it). I have subscribed to the excellent Dwell Scripture Listening app, which has some great readers, and includes the BCP Psalm reading plan (although they don’t mention that it is Cranmer’s one in the app). So I listen to Rosie, with her northern accent, reading the Psalms (nearly) every morning. You can set the app to repeat the reading, which has enabled me to meditate on the Psalms as I get to hear the daily selection at least three times on my short and slow runs.

This morning the whole reading was from Psalm 119 (the entire psalm takes 2½ days of the plan), and the phrase that caught my ear as I meditated was:

and I shall walk in a wide place,

for I have sought your precepts.

Psalm 119:46

I loved that reminder of the space that the Lord provides for his people when they seek him – and his laws. That feeling of freedom that comes when I know that I am following God’s way and not mine. As I run I feel freedom – the space and quiet of the canals in a noisy and busy part of creation. That verse from Psalm 119 spoke to me this morning of God’s generosity and kindness, when we can so easily think of him as placing restrictions and unnecessary boundaries on us. I walked and ran in a wide place this morning – with my slow and creaking body, and in my heart and soul.

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In my search for help on the Passover meal I’m catering for church this Thursday evening (over 40 folk signed up – eeek!), I visited Ann Voscamp’s beautiful blog the other day. Through her I was pointed to Willow of Wonder, another artistic blog where there are free Easter poster downloads available at the moment. I’ve printed one out for our kitchen noticeboard this week – there is a selection of colours available. Willow has an Etsy shop with some great scripture prints for kids which can be shipped to the UK (and some can be downloaded).

I shall be looking at this regularly to help me keep my catering panic in perspective.

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I know I know, Lent began yesterday. But just in case you’ve meant to start something and forgot. Or maybe you’d just like to try something extremely worthwhile without worrying about exactly when you begin or end: the Bible Society have got a fantastic idea – wouldn’t it be great to listen to the whole of the New Testament? It will only take 28 minutes a day if you listen every day for the 40 days of Lent. They have a special new recording of the CEV, from Riding Lights theatre company. They also have a Welsh language version available. There’s also a free CD pack available. The Bible Society are obviously keen that we would contribute towards their work if we benefit from this project, but the audio downloads are free on the website.

Here in the Vicarage, we’re trying to listen to a chapter (or two) of the bible at teatime this Lent – we’ve been playing the audio on Biblegateway.com on the kitchen computer. We’ve been impressed by how quiet the kids are as we listen. Early days yet, tho’. But we have found the audio bible a good way to nourish ourselves with larger chunks of scripture.

If you have a tablet, or a smartphone, you can do the same thing using the free Daily Bible app.

So I think it’s worth a listen. Even if I don’t manage the whole New Testament in exactly 40 days, I’ll have taken in more scripture than usual, and that’s only going to be a help since

… faith comes through hearing…

Romans 10v17

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Just saw these wonderful video clips from 66 Clouds. They show wordles – word frequency pictures – of every book in the Bible and another of the whole Bible. Fantastic! They also do posters, but the cost of shipping to the UK might be prohibitive – maybe worth enquiring though, eh?

First the whole bible:

And here are all the books in order:

[HT: Dan Green]

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