VIEW FROM THE PEW
Lesley Coates Jones
It sometimes seems as though the subject of Social Media, particularly with the recent Facebook debacle, is a bit like marmite; you either love it or hate it. Like many things to do with computers, for some of us who belong to a certain age group, we have had cause to come close to pitching the dreaded machine out of the window.....or, be ever thankful for them.
It was so for me, when my lap top flagged up that The Revs, Ian and Linda Robinson were to be “on the move” and starting a new adventure! Thankfully, before it was too late for us to get to their Leaving Service at Bedale. Ian “cut his teeth” with us as a curate and to our surprise chose to have his Ordination /Instalment at St Matthew's. Such a joy filled time for us all. It was also during the time when they were with us at Stalling Busk that Linda had her calling to apply for the ministry. A double blessing.
Their final service at Bedale was lovely and very moving. St Gregory's was bursting at the seams, filled with those wishing them well; a beautiful Sunday morning service filled with Spiritual light. A further specialness was added to the occasion to have the new Suffragan, Bishop of Ripon, Helen Ann as preacher. Ripon is so blessed in this appointment, she is an eloquent, thoughtful leader, full of grace who is very approachable and accessible. Her words of immense wisdom and warmth seemed to hold something of personal significance for me. She spoke about 'abiding in God ', with such relevance and comfort, reminding us that God is faithful to us, as much as the other way round, something which we perhaps tend to forget. Her words about pruning and the value of cutting back a living plant in order to encourage new and vigorous growth, held a significant meaning for me. I could see that some of the qualities and skills that are slipping away from Ken in his condition of Dementia, were being replaced by a much more lateral approach to new ideas and qualities, accompanied by an attitude to life that is softened and warmed by an inner spiritual grace and kindness, It is a gift to “live in the moment” which I find quite infectious, and it is impelling to join him in looking for the good in unlikely people. We share the half full cup and often it is spilling over! It is very humbling and makes me so thankful to God for these special years, and this unique relationship that has been built on almost sixty years of togetherness with all its ups and downs, its sadness’s and its celebrations.
Our shared path as creative people, of attempting to produce in art “something that wasn't there before, not to merely reproduce and try to copy something The Great Creator did so much better anyway, has helped to make us aware, as thinking, praying people, that is God's path we tread, and it is His direction we follow. It is His faithfulness which upholds and sustains us in our vulnerability. We have been shown more love than we could ever have imagined existed, from our Father in Heaven and from all of you, dear friends and family, He works through us all even those who have no recognition of that. As they say, there are none so blind as those who cannot see, to open your eyes to His Love, can be a relatively simple step, compared to learning to ride a bike or learning to swim: acts which once you have accomplished them, make you wonder why you had any difficulty. We hope to welcome you to St Matthew's, sometime soon.... a good water to test your toes in. No pressure, just saying....
God chooses us! And if we reciprocate, it is a journey like no other.! May God bless us and keep us