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East Trent Churches

Reflections

July 2018

Dear Friends,

Here’s a good piece of advice for any travellers this summer; Stand at the crossroads and look and ask for the ancient paths, where the good way lies; and walk in it and find rest for your souls.* If we’re going on a journey, it’s certainly a good idea to stop and think about the best route to take. If we don’t, we could end up tired, frustrated, with a scowling face and a soul desperate for rest.

In the last month, I’ve been very glad of everyone who’s taken time to stop and consider the best way to go, especially on the prayer and pilgrimage walks through our villages. On those walks, we often took ancient paths, footpaths which have been tried and tested and trodden for centuries and this helped us to think about more than the quickest, safest and easiest route. This gave us the time and space to consider who and what has gone before us and to contemplate what is happening now. We did this by talking and laughing with each other as we walked and enjoyed refreshment. We did this by looking at the ancient and new buildings, the growing crops, and the current industry and leisure activities. We did this by pausing to pray to God.

I have learnt a good lesson through doing this. It’s not only on a country walk that I need to stop, look around me and think about which way to go. It’s not only as I travel from village to village and church to church that I need to consider what has happened before and to learn ancient wisdom.

In 2018, we live in a busy, changing, surprising, and somewhat disturbing world. It will help us to keep steady and not overwhelmed if we take time, pause to consider what’s happening around us, learn good lessons from the past and think about the direction of our life.

Stopping and taking time to pray to God and to wonder at the world around us will help to put life into perspective and may help us see ways to make our world better.

I hope this summer you will find rest for your bodies and souls, enjoyment and good ways.

God bless you

Revd Mandy.

* If you are interested in where the above quote came from, it’s from the book of Jeremiah in the Bible, chapter six, verse sixteen.