Rev James Bamber
There was once an orphan who wanted nothing more in the world than to belong to a family...to be chosen. Finally, aged eight, his opportunity came. With hope and excitement, he collected his few possessions together...his old, torn clothes and a single teddy. His new parents were thrilled to have him and threw a special dinner to celebrate. He was introduced to the other children in the area, and his old clothes were replaced with new ones. He was bought a new bike and soon began to feel at home. However, one thing puzzled him. His old shoes with holes in them hadn't been thrown away but were kept on the mantelpiece. The enigma was soon solved because every time he did something wrong his father would go and fetch the shoes and say, "Look at all we've done for you...but look at how you've behaved."
I suspect there are times in our relationships when we behave in a similar way, choosing to dredge up the past and reuse it. The plan period will see us journey through Lent into Easter, a season for remembering that forgiveness as God intends, is about throwing out the shoes too, refusing to let past mistakes govern the present. The Good News we live by and proclaim is the Gospel of the umpteenth chance something which is reiterated in Mark 16:7, 'But go, tell his disciples and Peter...' Finding someone who will give us a second chance can be rare in these times — much less someone who keeps on doing so. In Jesus, Peter found both and so can we.
With love and prayers,
You may also be interested in
The Revd Dr Clifford Owen enjoys watching The Vicar of Dibley and Father Ted. He has also in the past laughed at the sketches of The Dave Allen Show. But how far do TV sitcoms represent the realities of life as a vicar or priest?In 10 Churches, 3 Crises, 1 God Clifford 'tells it for real'. This is his story of 50 years from first call through to retirement and up to the present day.He...
From the Circuit Staff — January 2021Dear friendsAlthough we were all expecting Christmas and New Year to be different this year, the speed of increased infection rates has taken us all by surprise. One minute people were stocking up their fridges, and the next putting as much as possible into the freezer, realising they would be on their own or at least a very reduced number over the...
Pastoral Letter — East Anglia District Chair of the District — Revd. Julian M. PursehouseJanuary 2021Sisters and Brothers in Christ,I am writing this letter on the first day of the New Year and I suspect that for many of us our festive celebrations and our marking of the New Year will have been somewhat muted in character given the circumstances we find ourselves in. Just a week before...