There is this fluttering, like palpitations,
or quickening, or perhaps butterflies
except not in the stomach, not low down.
This is up, aloft … a-hover now,
like a dove above a river
except that we are not outside.
This which we have waded into
has a strong current which is also electric.
There is a fragrance on the air,
and a wave-of-roaring sometimes,
a light tongue-lap other times,
or a flame a-flicker, a-dance overhead.
This is a presence that encompasses,
circumscribes like arcs around a radial dot,
except not one of us is just a dot.
Here, we are radiant motes
in the light from a scintillating source,
a focus for espousing photons – a touch
sometimes airy, featherlike, particulate
sometimes bright, irradiating, burning,
other times pulsing and as comforting
as a mother-hen, warm wings brooding.
This presence protects but is not safe.
This is like a breeze in the face sometimes,
other times, forceful – a gushing wind
to knock you backwards into a catcher’s arms
or to knee-buckle as if by your own free will,
whatever your will is anymore.
And sometimes there will be laughter
and sometimes groaning and sobbing,
or those silent tears that heal.
For This is That which was without,
and is now He who is within –
who is and was and will be …
up there, in here, now this side, now that
and, yes, even down
where we’d rather cover over.
He who blots out all trouble
calms all fear and flesh-nonsense,
retunes arrhythmia at the core,
clutches at lungs and announces
This is Pneuma
before breathing fresh life inside,
blowing the top of your head right off
for an instant neuroplasty
to rewire pathways, remap networks,
reignite dulled synapses,
wipe corrupt memories, install new software,
rewrite histories, recast futures.
Sharon Larkin, May 2020
by Dave Wellington
Let’s not be under any illusions here. None of us have been in this situation before. And as a result of that, how we adapt to what’s happening is key. You’ll have seen the first glimpses of it on Sunday with a morning service stream that looked different to anything we’ve done before (if you haven’t seen it yet – you can watch it again here), but the key question, and the question most churches are asking at the moment, is what else are we going to be doing as a church in this season when meeting together physically is out of the question? How can we get and stay connected? How do we carry on as a family when we can’t meet as an extended family?
We don’t need a building to connect with one another or to connect with the Father.
Social media over the next few months is going to be key. You’ll have already seen loads of content going live and this will continue to grow. It’s going to be so important, but as I write this, I have a plea that goes alongside it. We’re going to be producing a massive range of content, from devotions and worship songs through to some light-hearted stuff that should hopefully put a smile on your face – but please interact with us. We’ll be asking some questions and we would love your answers. If you’ve got a testimony – tell us. If you’ve found something amazing to keep yourself occupied at home – share it. If you’ve got a prayer request – send it in. If you’re struggling – let us know. What is the Father saying to you throughout this? You get where I’m going. This won’t work as a one-sided conversation and we don’t want it to be that. And please, if you’ve got suggestions of things you’d like to see – shout.
But Social media isn’t the only way we can stay connected. Let’s go back to using the phone for what it was meant to be. Let’s keep connected with each other by calling people. Let’s see each other’s faces by video calling. Speak to loads of people at once using something like Skype or Zoom – and if you aren’t sure how to do that, let us know. Wanting to connect with others is natural and thankfully we’re better equipped to do that than ever before.
Finally, I’ve been feeling over the last week that whilst all of this is (without question) a massive change, it’s also an amazing opportunity. I know that it sounds crazy to say as the world seems like it’s falling apart. People are scared. People are hurting. But there is no better time to show love and kindness than now. So, I’m praying that the church starts to thrive in all of this and when we do all eventually meet again that we’ll have new faces with us. So, here’s a challenge to you in all of this. It can be hard to invite people to church on a Sunday morning, so why not use this chance to invite someone you know who wouldn’t normally go to church to watch the live stream?
1 Corinthians 16:13-14
Be on your guard; stand firm in the faith; be courageous; be strong. Do everything in love.
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