In Chronology

The following have been sent in by members of the church community, who have found them comforting and/or uplifting. We hope you enjoy them. Refresh the page for the latest contributions.

Share bible verses, poems, prayers, pictures or pieces of music you find spiritually comforting or uplifting by sending them here.

Favourite bible verses.

“Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God.”

1 John 4:7  (Katy Lace)

“The eternal God is your refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms. “Deuteronomy 33:27 (Valerie Wright)

Philippians 4:8

Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.” (Bob Lord)

“Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. ”   1 Peter 5:7

and

“The Lord will keep you from all harm. He will watch over your life.”  Psalm 121: 7

(Yvonne North)

“By waiting and by calm you shall be saved, in quiet and in trust your strength lies.” Isaiah 30: 15  (Anne Bray)

Psalm 46:10a   “Be still and know that I am God!”

2 Timothy 1:12b: “I know whom I have believed and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto Him against that day.”

(Dorothy Lusmore)

“Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is your true and proper worship. Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will”.

(Tim Clifford)

John 15 : 6. “You did not choose me.  I chose you”   (Jill Cook)

“What does the Lord require of you?
To act justly and to love mercy
and to walk humbly with your God.”
Micah 6: 8

 (John Heath)

I Ecclesiastes 3: verses 1 – 8
It begins with
“There is a time for everything
and a season for every activity under heaven.”

(Maureen Heath)

Acts 17:26-28

“From one ancestor he made all nations to inhabit the whole earth, and he allotted the times of their existence and the boundaries of the places where they would live, 27so that they would search for God and perhaps grope for him and find him—though indeed he is not far from each one of us. 28For “In him we live and move and have our being”; as even some of your own poets have said, “For we too are his offspring.” ” (Tom Belshaw)

Naomi Honey recommends the Graham Kendrick song “ Holy Overshadowing” (Acoustic Trio Sessions) featuring Ben Trigg. Listen to it here.

***

Living Presence, I come here this morning looking up at the sky,
longing to see you and have my soul earthed in security.
Embody yourself in all the life round me this day.
May I recognise your loving hand as the events of today unfurl.
May I be aware of you in the unlooked-for moments with another.
May I worship in the magic cathedral of the bluebell wood.
May my spirit soar with the song of the willow-warbler and chiff-chaff.
May my body feel alive with love as your Spirit resides in me.
May I trust your compassion in the struggles that I find within me,
for though you cannot hold my body with your body, you hold my life in yours.
Earth me securely in your love as I set forth this day. Amen.

from Tess Ward’s The Celtic Wheel of the Year

The Enigmatic Lady

By Maureen Dryden

Silently and stealthily she makes her way

Clothed in sombre, cold, steel grey

She sways and glides from chalk white hills

As her dress responds to the vocal gulls

Her hips are adorned with rushes of gold

As she wanders and loiters, silently – not bold

Swaying this way and that, she signals her greeting

To Sentry the Heron, feisty swans and ‘minions’ of ducks’ eating

They squawk and they squabble as ‘minions’ do

Greedily gobbling – the generous food

Food thrown by courtiers on nearby bridge

Fulfilling the desire to nurture and give

Enough, my Lady – ignore this sight

Do not involve in their unedifying fight

Stealthily, silently spread your dress

Under this bridge to the beach – no less

Here decisions have to be made

Here Your future has to be laid

Straight down to the sea in an elegant glide

Till the ocean gathers you away with the tide

Your steel grey robes embossed with foam

All your admirers now turn towards home

Or – a gentle turn to the East and left

Spurning the seashore and driftwood bereft

She treads more slowly now to the East

Still swaying and curving in silent retreat

Along the beach, parallel to the sea

Firmly establishing the new route to be!

O Lady in Grey how majestic you are

As you drift and wander, slowly afar

You end your journey quite reluctantly

As you trickle and burble on pebbles – embraced by the sea

We shall meet another day – another time

Another day our souls shall chime

This poem and photo is about my family’s favourite place,   Charmouth:,the river ,the beach , the sea and many happy times.  There, especially with Liz my daughter, Ben my grandson and Len my husband.   All no longer with us but very much. alive on this beach to us! A visit here revives the soul!      Maureen Dryden

See leaves and trees sent in by members of the church community here.

***

I pollarded am

I pollarded am.

My elbows ancient are,

but my hair, which

out of my neck does grow,

the head hacked off having been,

is young, absurdly, rubbery so.

O so ancient my chest and hips

pressing the legs of me, now stumps,

deep into underground.

Why do they this pollarding do?

One day, no doubt,

thus and thus did some king say.

So from the folly of an autumn cut,

it came to must be so.

They say in China this they do to feet,

in other countries, minds,

and others, souls.  Thus nature rearrangèd is.

I know not what I think

not having head,

for I pollarded am.

David Scott, former Rector of St Lawrence and St Swithun.

Sent in by Graham Rolfe

***

Sent in by Carol Jessop

***

                             Just pause   —    When you  STOP   and  LOOK  AROUND

                                This  LIFE  is  PRETTY

                                   AMAZING !

***

God grant me the Serenity to accept the things I cannot change,

Courage to change the things I can,

And the Wisdom to know the difference.

***

Lady Baden- Powell, Chief  Guide  wrote, —

‘Discipline yourself daily by having a plan,

Commit yourself daily to do something,however small,for somebody else,

for,by making other people happy, you will find true happiness yourself.

A few thoughts at this time of lock-down,

From Hilary Holt

Kindness

Naomi Shihab Nye

Before you know what kindness really is

you must lose things,

feel the future dissolve in a moment

like salt in a weakened broth.

What you held in your hand,

what you counted and carefully saved,

all this must go so you know

how desolate the landscape can be

between the regions of kindness.

How you ride and ride

thinking the bus will never stop,

the passengers eating maize and chicken

will stare out the window forever.

Before you learn the tender gravity of kindness
you must travel where the Indian in a white poncho
lies dead by the side of the road.
You must see how this could be you,
how he too was someone
who journeyed through the night with plans
and the simple breath that kept him alive.

Before you know kindness as the deepest thing inside,
you must know sorrow as the other deepest thing.
You must wake up with sorrow.
You must speak to it till your voice
catches the thread of all sorrows
and you see the size of the cloth.
Then it is only kindness that makes sense anymore,
only kindness that ties your shoes
and sends you out into the day to gaze at bread,
only kindness that raises its head
from the crowd of the world to say
It is I you have been looking for,
and then goes with you everywhere
like a shadow or a friend.

From Words Under the Words: Selected Poems.

Send in by Katy Lace

***

LOVELIEST OF TREES, THE CHERRY NOW

Loveliest of trees, the cherry now

Is hung with bloom along the bough,

And stands about the woodland ride

Wearing white for Eastertide.

Now, of my threescore years and ten,

Twenty will not come again,

And take from seventy springs a score,

it only leaves me fifty more.

And since to look at things in bloom

Fifty springs are little room,

About the woodlands I will go

To see the cherry hung with snow.

A.E.HOUSEMAN 1859 – 1936.

Suggested by Maureen Heath

***

LIFE

I sat with the stars on the hill of life

And looked at the world below.

I ran with the winds where the winds begin

And followed them where they blow.

I lay by the sea on the beaten rock

And rode on the farthest wave.

I watched by a child on its night of birth

And followed it to its grave.

The lips with a sting in their passions’ press

Touched mine to my soul within;

I know all the cavernous earthly hells,

The gold-garnished seats of sin.

And love in the still of the star-flecked night,

When earth was all strewn with gold,

Has lifted my heart like the chords of song

Oft sung in the worlds of old.

And though I have not understood all this,

Made up of a laugh and a wail;

I think that the God of the world knows all,

And some day will tell the tale.

MAX EHRMANN sent in by Lisa Ball

This poem was written by Max Ehrman who wrote Desiderata.I have loved it for many years through some of the difficulties I have faced.I offer the poem now to you and to the people of The United Church who have all made me feel so welcome.

God bless you,                               Lisa Ball

***

Breaking through the powers of darkness
bursting from the stifling tomb
he slipped into the graveyard garden
to smell the blossomed air.

Tell them, Mary, Jesus said,
that I have journeyed far
into the darkest deeps I’ve been
in nights without a star.

Tell them, Mary, Jesus said,
that fear will flee my light
that though the ground will tremble
and despair will stalk the earth
I hold them firmly by the hand
through terror to new birth.

Tell them, Mary, Jesus said,
the globe and all that’s made
is clasped to God’s great bosom
they must not be afraid
for though they fall an die, he said,
and the black earth wrap them tight
they will know the warmth
of God’s healing hands
in the early morning light.

Tell them, Mary, Jesus said,
smelling the blossomed air,
tell my people to rise with me
to heal the Earth’s despair.

Edwina GateleyA Warm Moisty Salty God,

Sent in  by Lisa Ball

***

A quotation from A Desert in the Ocean by David Adam:

Daily prayer is not so much words but awareness, not so much telling God but being with him with all our senses alert to what God desires of us.  Prayer is entering fully into the Eternal that is all about us

Sent in by Jill Cook

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Japanese Wisdom

No door leads to happiness or unhappiness

Both enter when you ask them to

Sent in by Rosie MacMullen

***

Deep Peace of the Running Wave. Enjoy Aled Jones sing this hymn here.

Suggested by Sylvia Samphier.