Thought for the Day : Wednesday 3 February

Thought for the Day by Heston Groenewald (All Hallows’)

God is with us in Headingley and Hyde Park.

AMEN i hear you say.
AMEEN i hear our Muslim neighbours say!

It is my privilege and joy
to spend a lot of time in Headingley + Hyde Park’s mosques
often taking visitors with me.

Please can i take you on a virtual visit today

Here is Makkah Mosque
on a peaceful afternoon-
visiting with one lone student:

And here is Leeds Grand Mosque
on a crazy chaotic afternoon-
visiting with The June Project students*
(* see Anna Bland’s TFTD on 15 January)

It is easy to see God’s presence
in our Muslim neighbours.

They have much to share with us
of God’s majesty and holiness and justice,
of faithfulness in prayer,
of fasting and feasting and hospitality.

They also help us to see
(by comparison and contrast)
God’s presence
IN GLORIOUS TECHNICOLOUR
in our own Christian faith.

This way of Jesus is GOOD NEWS:
in a few unique wonderful ways
which no other faith
(that I’ve yet encountered)
can quite match or fathom.

GOOD NEWS:

God *is* endless self-giving love.

GOOD NEWS:

God has created a world that is Good (Very Good!)

GOOD NEWS:

God loves the world enough to be born
as one of his human image-bearers:
committing to his creation in love.

GOOD NEWS:

God goes to the depths of human despair and death
for us and with us:
in Jesus defeating death with life
overwhelming despair with hope
re-inviting us into his work:
re-creating the world in resurrection love.

It thrills me to bits and fills me with hope-
and i pray it may do the same for you today!

How can you put an earthquake into a test-tube,
or the sea into a bottle?
How can you live with the terrifying thought
that the hurricane has become human,
that fire has become flesh,
that life itself came to life and walked in our midst?
Christianity either means that, or it means nothing…

(N.T. Wright)

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