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Viewpoint from Margaret Bazely 10/05/2013

 

MARGARET BAZELYMargaret Bazely
Chaplaincy Coordinator
Great Yarmouth College
Methodist Local Preacher
 

Have you ever… felt prompted to contact a friend and hit on just the moment when they most needed encouragement? Have you ever…..found unexpected courage to stand strongly against an injustice? Have you ever…..had words from a song come to mind just when you needed them? Ever risked taking a really difficult decision and later felt you’d been led in the right direction? Have you ever…expected to dislike someone and had to drastically revise your opinion?

After the terrible news of pressure cooker bombs in Boston, suspicion of chemical warfare in Syria, earthquake  in China, building collapse in Bangladesh and missile deployment in North Korea the parting instruction of Jesus to his followers  ‘Just as I have loved you, you also should love one another’  seems a naïve and simplistic response. How can love really heal a world like ours?
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And yet…reflecting on the days after the first Easter we see the friends of Jesus acting in just those impulsive and surprising ways described above. And their inspired actions turned the world upside down


Peter ignored a rumbling stomach and continued praying long enough to receive a vision that would shake him to the core. Because he resisted going for an early breakfast Jews and Gentiles found they could worship God together


Philip felt an urge to wander down to the desert road and was invited into the chariot of an Ethiopian emissary. Because he followed a hunch the news about Jesus was taken deep into Africa
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Ananias was challenged to visit a dangerous adversary; someone hell bent on destroying the Christian faith. Because he was willing to revise his opinions, that man, Paul, went on to take news about Jesus to Asia, Greece and the heart of Rome

These stories fill me with the confidence that the Holy Spirit, the one who so often prompts us in unexpected ways is behind the kind of love which can change things overnight! In the face of the fear and darkness we and the world itself can be transformed through our small acts of love