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palm Sunday 2016Welcome to Lectionary doodles. Here you will find a weekly adult colouring in item that reflects on the lectionary for the week. My hope that you might stumble on something new about the Christian faith story you didn’t notice before, grow a little in your own faith, gain a deeper connection with God and have fun while you are doing it or at least relax a little or concentrate a bit better when someone else is talking!

This is hugely new to me.. I don’t consider myself an artist but started the drawings as a Lenten practice for myself and shared them with my congregation, people seem to find them helpful and I have been encouraged to share them on a wider more accessible format. Some weeks I am amazed at what I can do other weeks I feel like my 8 year old could do much better! But I will share them with you as gifts, may they help you connect deeply with the Ultimate creative One, God.

So here goes.

I thought what I might do is put up the drawing, add the reading I was reflecting on, write a bit about what I noticed in the text and chuck a couple of questions in that seem to spring to mind when I ponder them.

By the way if you want to use my stuff that is great, just let me know and don’t use it to make millions (not that I really think you can!), not unless you are going to give it all to the poor!

 

 

 

August 28th 2016,Pentecost+15, Luke 14:7-14

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Luke 14:7-14

7When he noticed how the guests chose the places of honor, he told them a parable. 8“When you are invited by someone to a wedding banquet, do not sit down at the place of honor, in case someone more distinguished than you has been invited by your host; 9and the host who invited both of you may come and say to you, ‘Give this person your place,’ and then in disgrace you would start to take the lowest place. 10But when you are invited, go and sit down at the lowest place, so that when your host comes, he may say to you, ‘Friend, move up higher’; then you will be honored in the presence of all who sit at the table with you. 11For all who exalt themselves will be humbled, and those who humble themselves will be exalted.” 12He said also to the one who had invited him, “When you give a luncheon or a dinner, do not invite your friends or your brothers or your relatives or rich neighbors, in case they may invite you in return, and you would be repaid. 13But when you give a banquet, invite the poor, the crippled, the lame, and the blind. 14And you will be blessed, because they cannot repay you, for you will be repaid at the resurrection of the righteous.”

This reading this week has created some very interesting discussions about how we relate to other people.. Who do we include or exclude? WHo are easy to relate to and who do we avoid? We were talking about how sometimes we try to look like we are make an effort but the reality is a very different thing.

The whole discussion today about sitting in the place of honour is an interesting one, there are things going on here that is assumed but is not overtly spoken about.. I have always thought about it in terms of wanting to sit with the cool or funky people, like having the chance to sit with a movie star.. But here, it is also about getting in the ear of the person who has power.. There were often bussiness transactions, family negotiation..

It made me think about the people we sit with and about who has our ear, or who do we listen to and who we have the ear of..  I am sure you have noticed with the new technology that all of a sudden if you do a search on something, every page you look at is advertising what you were looking for. (unfortunate when someone uses your computer for a search for something you are not interested in!) The problem with this is that there is few things that actually then challenge us to think differently..  We can go on our Merry way assuming everyone then is like us..

It takes courage to unlock our doors and our hearts to those who are different, those who are uncomfortable, or who seemingly have nothing to offer us..  The reading says we will be rewarded in heaven if we invite these people to our table. I would say we are often rewarded in the now when we have the courage to to open our doors and hearts to those who are different.

So the questions for me who is sitting outside my door that I am not too keen to let in? Who are the people that I am vying for the attention of and why? I was at a conference today and watched the people move around the tables.. The interesting thing I noticed about myself in this is that often I choose to sit with people because they make me feel safe and it is only when I am feeling safe and confident that I have the courage to open my life to those I don’t know… Somedays we need to be that person.. Somedays we just don’t have the strength to go there. But we are never supposed to go there in our own strength.. We are always sitting at the table with God first!

An after note… Did you notice that the empty space in the picture is in the shape of a cross? I found it interesting that the door is in the centre of it.. It challenges me to think that maybe it should be Jesus who decides who is in and out..

August 21, 2016: Proper 16 / Ordinary 21 / Pentecost +14

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Luke 13:10-17

10Now he was teaching in one of the synagogues on the sabbath. 11And just then there appeared a woman with a spirit that had crippled her for eighteen years. She was bent over and was quite unable to stand up straight. 12When Jesus saw her, he called her over and said, “Woman, you are set free from your ailment.” 13When he laid his hands on her, immediately she stood up straight and began praising God. 14But the leader of the synagogue, indignant because Jesus had cured on the sabbath, kept saying to the crowd, “There are six days on which work ought to be done; come on those days and be cured, and not on the sabbath day.” 15But the Lord answered him and said, “You hypocrites! Does not each of you on the sabbath untie his ox or his donkey from the manger, and lead it away to give it water? 16And ought not this woman, a daughter of Abraham whom Satan bound for eighteen long years, be set free from this bondage on the sabbath day?” 17When he said this, all his opponents were put to shame; and the entire crowd was rejoicing at all the wonderful things that he was doing.

I wonder what it means that a woman had a spirit that crippled her? I assumed it meant she was bent over with a bad back.. But what if it was depresssion or anxiety?

I found the people’s response interesting.. If the woman was coming to be healed by God surely the best day to be healed by God would be on God’s day.. I wonder why it annoyed them soo much that she wanted to be healed? Were they jealous? Were they annoyed that this woman took Jesus away from the important task of teaching them.. or were they in the middle of a great thought and she interupted!

August 14, 2016: Proper 15 / Ordinary 20 / Pentecost +13

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Luke 12:49-56

49“I came to bring fire to the earth, and how I wish it were already kindled! 50I have a baptism with which to be baptized, and what stress I am under until it is completed! 51Do you think that I have come to bring peace to the earth? No, I tell you, but rather division! 52From now on five in one household will be divided, three against two and two against three;53they will be divided: father against son and son against father, mother against daughter and daughter against mother, mother-in-law against her daughter-in-law and daughter-in-law against mother-in-law.”

54He also said to the crowds, “When you see a cloud rising in the west, you immediately say, ‘It is going to rain’; and so it happens. 55And when you see the south wind blowing, you say, ‘There will be scorching heat’; and it happens. 56You hypocrites! You know how to interpret the appearance of earth and sky, but why do you not know how to interpret the present time?

When I was younger I never really understood this verse.. Why would Jesus want to cause conflict in families? and have them divided against each other?  As an adult I understand a lot better. As I have got older I have watched and found myself and my family developing certain views about things.. How we raise our kids, what to do about money, how we treat people of different races, our politic views, what we think about God.. Even people who have been raised in the same family can end up with very different world views and ideas about how things should be done..

The way of Jesus is very counter cultural, Jesus says greed is not good, western culture needs greed to keep the economics of the world to keep moving. Be compassionate to the stranger and the downtrodden, in a culture of fear and individualism only look after those you love and trust.

The next section of the reading doesn’t make sense out of context.. Leading up to this Luke has been going back and forwards between relax, God loves you and will take care of you to be ready be prepared if you are not found doing the right thing you will end up punished for it.. For me the next verse (57) makes it all make sense… “And why do you not judge for yourselves what is right?”  This tirade comes out of a man coming to Jesus to ask him to sort things out with his family over a will.. If people are living for justice, compassion and if everyone is working on this agenda it should all be simple, right?.. But it is not.. Not everyone is working towards the same agenda.. Ironically too is that sometimes we can be working towards the same agenda but have very different ways of going about it..

The challenge from Jesus, why are you not judging for yourself what is right, you are smart cookies  you can know a whole bunch of things about the world around you, So where is the wisdom? The thing I noticed in drawing this reading this week is in these two examples he gave they were about seeing something and know what was going to happen as a consequence of that.. I wonder if Jesus is asking us to look at all of our lives and ask the same question?

7th August 2016 Proper 14C / Ordinary 19C / Pentecost +12

img050Luke 12:32-48

32“Do not be afraid, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom. 33Sell your possessions, and give alms. Make purses for yourselves that do not wear out, an unfailing treasure in heaven, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys. 34For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. 35“Be dressed for action and have your lamps lit; 36be like those who are waiting for their master to return from the wedding banquet, so that they may open the door for him as soon as he comes and knocks. 37Blessed are those slaves whom the master finds alert when he comes; truly I tell you, he will fasten his belt and have them sit down to eat, and he will come and serve them.38If he comes during the middle of the night, or near dawn, and finds them so, blessed are those slaves. 39“But know this: if the owner of the house had known at what hour the thief was coming, he would not have let his house be broken into. 40You also must be ready, for the Son of Man is coming at an unexpected hour.”

41Peter said, “Lord, are you telling this parable for us or for everyone?”42And the Lord said, “Who then is the faithful and prudent manager whom his master will put in charge of his slaves, to give them their allowance of food at the proper time? 43Blessed is that slave whom his master will find at work when he arrives. 44Truly I tell you, he will put that one in charge of all his possessions. 45But if that slave says to himself, ‘My master is delayed in coming,’ and if he begins to beat the other slaves, men and women, and to eat and drink and get drunk, 46the master of that slave will come on a day when he does not expect him and at an hour that he does not know, and will cut him in pieces, and put him with the unfaithful. 47That slave who knew what his master wanted, but did not prepare himself or do what was wanted, will receive a severe beating. 48But the one who did not know and did what deserved a beating will receive a light beating. From everyone to whom much has been given, much will be required; and from the one to whom much has been entrusted, even more will be demanded.

I have a thing for bags and wallets, I like them but I don’t treat them with a lot of respect so they break, often.. So the concept of making purses for yourself that don’t wear out quite appealed to me.. As a sew – er I thought what would it be made of? and immediately came to mind a little purse I had as a kid, it had one of those metal clips on them that as a kid was really hard to open, my one was quite plain but in my mind I saw a beautiful patchwork one made up of all the bits and pieces you pick up along the way, stitched differently every time.. little peices of fabric like treasured memories.

It is interesting my little purse came to mind that was so hard to open because I do think this is what the reading is about. When the purse is closed there are two things that happen, no new things can go in and the things in there are not terribly useful. They are only useful when they are pulled out and given to another.. We like to hold onto things for a rainy day, but how often when it is raining do we actually use it or are we second guessing that this is the right time? For me the purse needed to be open, the contents available to share with others but also the space is made for God to be able to add more treasures into those things of our heart, because that is what God wants to do, give us the things of the kingdom. I love how often when we have the courage to be open and generous, prepared to share and care, how often that comes back to us threefold, which for me is what the next section of the reading is about, when the master serves the slave.

One of the  things that stands out in all of this reading, is the reminder that faith is not a Sunday only , or a “when people are looking at me”experience, it is something that needs to be lived in everyday and every moment.. The being prepared, not being caught off guard, challenges us to ask how is what happening now in our life reflecting kingdom values?

The drawing this week raised a number of questions for me, what are the purses we make? where are the things of my heart stored?  What are my treasures? What do I need to let go of?  and  what would I like to work on collecting? I have left the coins blank so if you want to you can draw or write on them the things you treasure, the things you hold onto or the things you need to let go of ,or you may like to ponder the things you would like to treasure. I love the various ways we can have conversations with God!

 

 

Proper 13C / Ordinary 18C / Pentecost +11 Foolish rich man

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Luke 12:13-21

13Someone in the crowd said to him, “Teacher, tell my brother to divide the family inheritance with me.” 14But he said to him, “Friend, who set me to be a judge or arbitrator over you?” 15And he said to them, “Take care! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of possessions.” 16Then he told them a parable: “The land of a rich man produced abundantly. 17And he thought to himself, ‘What should I do, for I have no place to store my crops?’ 18Then he said, ‘I will do this: I will pull down my barns and build larger ones, and there I will store all my grain and my goods. 19And I will say to my soul, ‘Soul, you have ample goods laid up for many years; relax, eat, drink, be merry.’ 20But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your life is being demanded of you. And the things you have prepared, whose will they be?’ 21So it is with those who store up treasures for themselves but are not rich toward God.”

 

I am so enjoying the challenge of drawing the reading.. Today was particularly interesting.. The questions it raised for me were twofold.. What are the things as human beings we store in our silos, things that have our never fulfilled appitite? Secondly what are the things of life that are not about the abundance of possessions?

So inside the silo is a couple of ideas of the things that can consume us with the need for more! I did find it interesting that it is not just about more but also about mine, you could easily replace the word more with mine because greed is not just about more but also a loss of hospitality or willingness to share..

What are those things  that remind us that life is about more than the gathering and storing of possessions? The beauty we find in nature, music, art, friendship, family, hospitality, community, compassion. It was interesting how many of those were about us and ours rather than mine. For Luke those things are the things that make us rich towards God, not others in general but God. When we live in this space of grateful appreciation for the everyday rather than the striving for more it is here we become rich to God..

I think that the reality of this situation is that for each of us the things that come to mind will be different.. The things I like to store up in my silo (hats actually) are not the same as yours and the things that add more to my life may not be what brings more to yours.. So this week the drawing has open spaces for you to add those things you can think of, both in and outside of the silo.. I would love to hear your ideas maybe you could share them in the comments!

 

Pentecost 10, Luke11:1-13 ,the Lords prayer

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Luke 11:1-13

11He was praying in a certain place, and after he had finished, one of his disciples said to him, “Lord, teach us to pray, as John taught his disciples.” 2He said to them, “When you pray, say: Father, hallowed be your name. Your kingdom come. 3Give us each day our daily bread. 4And forgive us our sins, for we ourselves forgive everyone indebted to us. And do not bring us to the time of trial.” 5And he said to them, “Suppose one of you has a friend, and you go to him at midnight and say to him, ‘Friend, lend me three loaves of bread; 6for a friend of mine has arrived, and I have nothing to set before him.’ 7And he answers from within, ‘Do not bother me; the door has already been locked, and my children are with me in bed; I cannot get up and give you anything.’ 8I tell you, even though he will not get up and give him anything because he is his friend, at least because of his persistence he will get up and give him whatever he needs. 9“So I say to you, Ask, and it will be given you; search, and you will find; knock, and the door will be opened for you. 10For everyone who asks receives, and everyone who searches finds, and for everyone who knocks, the door will be opened. 11Is there anyone among you who, if your child asks for a fish, will give a snake instead of a fish? 12Or if the child asks for an egg, will give a scorpion? 13If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him!”

I chose to reflect today on Luke’s version of the Lords prayer it is shorter and has some interesting differences..  The one I noticed most significantly is that the forgiveness of others comes in the form that we already do this.

It is an interesting exercise to try nd draw something that is so intrinsic in our faith tradition.. How do you see God, or honouring God (hallowed by your name)? How do we reflect God’s kingdom, I didn’t want it to be castles because for me it was suggesting God’s vision belongs in the middle ages, whilst we might like to live in castles the majority of people don’t, nor do people we respect and choose to listen to.. The next section of the prayer for me listening to Luke are the cries of our heart.. Make sure we have enough to eat.. Even those who have too much food are still afraid of what would happen if it all ran dry and it is the reminder that for many in the world this is not the case.

And forgive us our sins, forgive those things that we have done or said, or the things we hold onto that we should let go of.. In our truthful silent spaces we know that there are times we have done things, and sometimes they are not easy to let go of.  For we ourselves forgive everyone indebted to us.. I like that here Jesus acknowledges that the people amongst him are living the Godly life and are forgiving the debt of others..Do not bring us into a time of trail.. What are the trials we are afraid of? What does that look like?  is it heartache, is it being trapped is it suffering?

I included the images and the second bit of the reading too, ask search knock and you will be given , find and it will be opened to you.. If you who don’t get it right all the time know how to give good gifts how much more will your father in heaven.. I find it interesting that it is about receiving the Holy Spirit.. Their have been times where I have had to face some really difficult situations and at those moments as I walk into those I have begged for God’s spirit to be present because I knew that I could not do this on my own.. It is comforting today to know, whether I felt it or not, that prayer was answered..

Go well.

Pentecost 8 The good Samaritan July 10

img039Luke 10:25-37

25Just then a lawyer stood up to test Jesus. “Teacher,” he said, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?” 26He said to him, “What is written in the law? What do you read there?” 27He answered, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your strength, and with all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself.” 28And he said to him, “You have given the right answer; do this, and you will live.” 29But wanting to justify himself, he asked Jesus, “And who is my neighbor?” 30Jesus replied, “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, and fell into the hands of robbers, who stripped him, beat him, and went away, leaving him half dead. 31Now by chance a priest was going down that road; and when he saw him, he passed by on the other side. 32So likewise a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side. 33But a Samaritan while traveling came near him; and when he saw him, he was moved with pity. 34He went to him and bandaged his wounds, having poured oil and wine on them. Then he put him on his own animal, brought him to an inn, and took care of him.35The next day he took out two denarii, gave them to the innkeeper, and said, ‘Take care of him; and when I come back, I will repay you whatever more you spend.’ 36Which of these three, do you think, was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of the robbers?” 37He said, “The one who showed him mercy.” Jesus said to him, “Go and do likewise.”

 

The particularly interesting thing I noticed with this story was that he had to unload alot of baggage to be able to help the injured man..

Pentecost 9, Mary and Martha July 17,2016

img043Luke 10:38-42

38Now as they went on their way, he entered a certain village, where a woman named Martha welcomed him into her home. 39She had a sister named Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet and listened to what he was saying. 40But Martha was distracted by her many tasks; so she came to him and asked, “Lord, do you not care that my sister has left me to do all the work by myself? Tell her then to help me.” 41But the Lord answered her, “Martha, Martha, you are worried and distracted by many things;42there is need of only one thing. Mary has chosen the better part, which will not be taken away from her.”

Proper 9C Pentecost 7, Luke 10:1-20 The harvest is plentiful..

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Luke 10:1-20

10After this the Lord appointed seventy others and sent them on ahead of him in pairs to every town and place where he himself intended to go. 2He said to them, “The harvest is plentiful, but the laborers are few; therefore ask the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into his harvest. 3Go on your way. See, I am sending you out like lambs into the midst of wolves. 4Carry no purse, no bag, no sandals; and greet no one on the road. 5Whatever house you enter, first say, ‘Peace to this house!’ 6And if anyone is there who shares in peace, your peace will rest on that person; but if not, it will return to you. 7Remain in the same house, eating and drinking whatever they provide, for the laborer deserves to be paid. Do not move about from house to house. 8Whenever you enter a town and its people welcome you, eat what is set before you;9cure the sick who are there, and say to them, ‘The kingdom of God has come near to you.’ 10But whenever you enter a town and they do not welcome you, go out into its streets and say, 11‘Even the dust of your town that clings to our feet, we wipe off in protest against you. Yet know this: the kingdom of God has come near.’ 12I tell you, on that day it will be more tolerable for Sodom than for that town. 13“Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the deeds of power done in you had been done in Tyre and Sidon, they would have repented long ago, sitting in sackcloth and ashes. 14But at the judgment it will be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon than for you. 15And you, Capernaum, will you be exalted to heaven? No, you will be brought down to Hades. 16“Whoever listens to you listens to me, and whoever rejects you rejects me, and whoever rejects me rejects the one who sent me.”

17The seventy returned with joy, saying, “Lord, in your name even the demons submit to us!” 18He said to them, “I watched Satan fall from heaven like a flash of lightning. 19See, I have given you authority to tread on snakes and scorpions, and over all the power of the enemy; and nothing will hurt you. 20Nevertheless, do not rejoice at this, that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven.”

 

This is one of my favourite readings but not for the reason you might think.. For me the thing I carry with me from this reading is if they do not welcome you, shake the dust from your feet and move on.. God will deal with it.. There are others who need to hear.

For Luke this was one of the first big send outs, 70 people sent out in pairs called to an exercise in trust.  There is a real duality here, both the joys of being accepted but the reality of being lambs amongst the wolves.. Jesus never said it would be easy, but he did say it was necessary.. The harvest is plentiful but the workers are few.

I was thinking about how often when we are on our journey we miss those grains of wheat as we are on our way because we can get so focused on where it is we need to go.

One of the things I noticed in this reading as I was drawing  was the how do you know that you are accepted? Or that people want to hear what you have to say?  The thing that came out was the act of hospitality.. The act of offering food and somewhere to stay. Sometimes I think we have forgotten about hospitality as one of the gifts of God. We assume it means getting the house all cleaned up and having everyone dressed in their finest clothes, preparing a lavish 3 coarse meal.. Hospitality here, the sign of the openness to God’s presence is about opening our house and self up to God and who God sends as we are, with what we have. It is not about the perfect gift for the guest, it is the gift of vulnerability. I am amazed at how often God moves in amazing ways when I have the courage to do this.

But there is a second side to this as well.. It’s not just about offering the food but accepting the gift that is offered.. Not just heading off to the next house to see if the food is better.. A great exercise in eating humble pie! It is about remembering the privilege it is to be welcomed into another’s home and the gift that is offered, the best of that person at that time and remembering the cost to them. Who is it that offers hospitality to you? Who would you like to offer hospitality but not sure you will be “good enough”  for? Be brave and courageous, step out in faith!! Journey well my friends!

 

Pentecost 6, Luke 9:51 – 62 He turned his face.

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Luke 9:51-62

51When the days drew near for him to be taken up, he set his face to go to Jerusalem. 52And he sent messengers ahead of him. On their way they entered a village of the Samaritans to make ready for him; 53but they did not receive him, because his face was set toward Jerusalem. 54When his disciples James and John saw it, they said, “Lord, do you want us to command fire to come down from heaven and consume them?” 55But he turned and rebuked them. 56Then they went on to another village.

57As they were going along the road, someone said to him, “I will follow you wherever you go.” 58And Jesus said to him, “Foxes have holes, and birds of the air have nests; but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head.” 59To another he said, “Follow me.” But he said, “Lord, first let me go and bury my father.” 60But Jesus said to him, “Let the dead bury their own dead; but as for you, go and proclaim the kingdom of God.”61Another said, “I will follow you, Lord; but let me first say farewell to those at my home.” 62Jesus said to him, “No one who puts a hand to the plow and looks back is fit for the kingdom of God.”

Have you ever been with someone who had something on their mind? Someone they were worrying about? I have, they check thier phone all the time, they don’t really pay attention to the conversation, it’s like they are planets away.. I know that sometimes it’s me, I can’t hear what is going on, I’m distracted and I’m sure not very good company! I imagine that this was a bit like what Jesus was like.. He came into a place of the Samaritans, normally he got on ok with them. They worshiped the same God they just believed that you didn’t have to go to Jerusalem to worship. That usually didn’t go down well with the Jews, the temple was the house of God, so there would often be issues.  I think with Jesus focused on Jerusalem they took it the wrong  way, the disciples responded. “If they don’t like us we don’t like you!” and were threatening to show them how great their God is! Jesus in the midst of him being distracted  saw what was going on and called the disciples off and moved everyone on..

The time had come and Jesus had decided it was time to face the big guns.. It was a big decision, I imagine he wasn’t 100 % sure how it would go down but knew they wouldn’t be real happy about what he had to say.. This is a lonely place to be, that moment when you know you have to do something hard, no body around you can really understand..

The people around him loved what he did because it was amazing and he made them feel valued and important, and they wanted to be part of it. But they wanted it all. They wanted to finish what they were doing, say goodbye to those who were important, make sure their business was ok.. Jesus challenges them, to be part of the kingdom of God requires your full attention now.. It requires you to be single-minded in what you are to do, don’t let the everyday get in the way of that. Jesus shows us here what that looks like. The call to love God and love everyone remains in how he responds to  the Samaritans, despite how focused on changing the world he was. The challenge he was going to go against in Jerusalem was against those who had started to put the law and religion before the call of God.

So the challenge for me today is what do we put before doing what God asks of us? Here we see family, grief, work, religion, rules, what about illness or politics or economics? To stand up against these things can feel lonely at times because people won’t always understand why.. They will try to judge our actions according to what they value. At the end of the day, Love trumps the lot.