Monday – Lent 34 – I Still Pray by Kasey Chambers

Today’s Jesus track is by the artists Kasey Chambers and Paul Kelly, it’s a song that reflects on Jesus as a baby, perhaps as we’ve travelled through Lent you’ve forgotten that only a few months ago we gathered and celebrated his birth…

I still cry for Baby Jesus

And I still pray when I’m alone

And when I’m lost

He’ll come to find me

Because he died to save my soul

When I can’t walk he’s there to carry

When I speak he hears my words

When I wake and I have nothing

He sends me gold, frankincense and myrrh

When I cry my tears of sorrow

When my heart will only ache

And if I’m troubled when I’m sleeping

He will hold me until I wake

Ponder:

How does this image affect you, or speak to you as we enter Holy Week?

Saturday – Lent 33 – Personal Reflection by Ian Bartholomew

Over Lent we’ve invited a number of people from our community to share their response to  to the question “Who do you say I am?”

In today’s reflection Ian shares his own thoughts using the images of my Lamb, my Lion and my Shepherd.

Jesus Christ: My Lamb, my Lion and my Shepherd

For the Lamb at the centre of the throne will be their shepherd; ‘he will lead them to springs of living water.’ Revelation 7:17 (NIV)

Introduction

You may be familiar with a Bible passage that mentions a lamb, a lion or a shepherd. Perhaps you recall the Passover lamb sacrificed as the enslaved Hebrew people prepared to leave Egypt, or the story of Daniel in the den of lions, or the psalm “The Lord is my Shepherd”. There is even a passage containing a mention of all three, when David the shepherd boy describes rescuing sheep from lions.

In responding to the question Jesus poses “Who do you say I am?”, one approach I find meaningful is to consider His attributes as my Lamb, my Lion and my Shepherd.

My Lamb

Just like the first Passover lamb, Jesus is the sacrifice for God’s people as the “Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!” He died on the cross in our place and by His blood we are cleansed of all our sin if we follow Him.

My Lion

Jesus is our “Lion of Judah”. He is the conqueror of death, the Mighty Saviour and has authority over all creation past, present and future. Just as the wise men did when He was a very young child, we worship him as Messiah and King of Heaven.

My Shepherd 

In His own words, Jesus tells us that He is the good shepherd who lays down His life for the sheep. Jesus also is a constant present who tends us, guides us through life and brings us to the shelter of God’s presence. He leads us home.

Reflection

Extract from “The Voyage of the Dawn Treader” by C. S. Lewis:

But between them and the foot of the sky there was something so white on the green grass that even with their eagles’ eyes they could hardly look at it. They came on and saw that it was a Lamb.

“Please Lamb,” said Lucy, “is this the way to Aslan’s country?”

“Not for you,” said the Lamb. “For you the door into Aslan’s country is from your own world.”

“What!” said Edmund. “Is there a way into Aslan’s country from our world too?”

“There is a way into my country from all the worlds,” said the Lamb; but as he spoke, his snowy white flushed into tawny gold and his size changed and he was Aslan himself, towering above them and scattering light from his [lion’s] mane.

[Ian Bartholomew, 1 March 2019]

Monday – Lent 28 – Gurrumul – Jesu


Today’s addition to the Lenten Playlist is the song Jesu, sung by the late Geoffrey Gurrumul Yunupingu from “‘The Gospel Album.” Gurrumul reimagines many of the songs that he grew up hearing from methodist missionaries, in church with his family.

Ponder:
As you listen to this song pay attention to the way it moves you.
What songs about Jesus have you grown up with?
What songs about Jesus do you sing today?
How has music shaped how you imagine Jesus?

Saturday – Lent 27 – Who do I say Jesus is?

This week’s reflection is by Chris Dodd, thank you Chris for sharing this with us and being open with your own journey and image of Jesus.

The older I get, the less I know, the less I understand, the less I am sure of.  When I was younger I was raised expecting to believe the whole deal.

  • Jesus was the literal son of God.
  • He did miracles.
  • He raised people from the dead.
  • He died for our sins.
  • He rose from the dead.
  • He ascended into heaven and one day He’ll come back again.

But these days, I find a lot of that does not sit comfortably with me. I have no experience of the supernatural and I have found I have no need of it for Jesus to be meaningful to me. In fact, the more fantastic the claim, the more it makes me uneasy.

So I have cut Jesus back to bare bones. 

  • He was a really good and wise man.
  • He saw it all so differently, so new, so fresh.
  • In a violent and brutal world He taught about love, faith and hope.
  • The early writers may have chosen to express this in mythical ways, but behind it all is this really meaningful and worthwhile way to live life. 
  • A life of love.
  • A life not being controlled by base impulses of revenge and hate, which never ends well.
  • A life of inclusiveness and acceptance.
  • A life that acknowledges that God embraces us, works with us as we are, and it’s not up to me (or anyone else) to decide who’s in and who’s out.

Whether all the miraculous things are true or not doesn’t bother me. The life described above is sufficient, and if I’m wrong I’m prepared to take the risk.

Ponder:
Spend some time today reflecting and writing what makes Jesus meaningful / important to you today

Friday – Lent 26 – “Lesser Brethren”


This image, titled The Lesser Brethren by the artist Margaret Tarrant almost looks like it belongs in a Disney animation, the animals all around the figure as, perhaps he whistles a jolly tune. It’s also a familiar scene for me, I remember seeing images of Jesus, very similar to this one on our church walls when I was younger and, even on church walls only a couple years ago. It’s not an Australian image of Jesus, the animals give that away but I wonder how you respond to the image.

Ponder:
How do you respond to the image of Jesus by Margaret Tarrant?
Have you seen images like this in your travels?
How does this image ist with the image of Jesus that you’re reading of through this season?