Rector's August 2013 Letter

Magazine Article August 2013

An advance notice – next month on Wednesday Sept 11th we will be hosting a very special event, with Anna Norman-Walker (who you may remember hosting the fantastically successful ‘Just 10’ events at Creely Park a few years ago) coming to speak to us on ‘What are Village Churches for?’  It would be wonderful to share this with all those who value our churches, not just the regular churchgoers, so please mark that evenuing in your diary.  More details of venue etc will be in the September magazine.

Isn’t sunny weather wonderful?  We feel better in our bodies, encouraged by the sun to stretch ourselves and take more exercise; in our minds, as it is so much harder to dwell on depressing thoughts when nature is celebrating around us; and in our spirits, as we start to feel gratitude for the blessings in our lives and the beauties of the world around us.

It reminds us that when we think of ourselves as ‘body, mind and spirit’, the three aspects are really so entwined together that there is no separating them.  A deficiency in our body’s chemistry can create mental depression, leading perhaps to a spiritual despair – and the process works also in the reverse direction, where some spiritual or mental ‘lift’ can lead to real improvement in bodily ailments.  The famous ‘placebo effect’, whereby taking a ‘medicine’ with no real pharmacological properties can effect a cure is not something to be sneered at; on the contrary it is a small indication of the power our minds and spirits have to affect our physical well being.

I have written before of the analogy that ‘body, mind and spirit’ are like three pillars holding up the roof of our lives.  When one pillar is too short or too weak, it is the other two that take extra strain and may show signs of crumbling.  People today are generally well aware of the ‘body’ and ‘mind’ pillars but may easily forget the importance of the third, ‘spirit’ pillar.  Just as we take care to have enough food and rest, and to keep our minds active in healthy ways, so we also need to find ways to care for and nourish our spirits.

One of the simplest is simply to take five minutes to sit quietly, or to walk very slowly around the garden (perhaps even barefoot),  consciously putting yourself ‘in the presence of God’ and leaving the rest to him.  Start with a short prayer, just asking God to be with you in the silence.   If you are outside, or near a window, you can let the sounds of nature act as a focus, or you might like to use a candle or picture or music, or a mentally repeated word such as ‘Peace’ or ‘Jesus’ to help you relax into the silence.  Don’t expect ‘anything to happen’ – the effects are cumulative, spreading out into the rest of our day the more we make time for silence.  If you would like to talk to me about this way of being with God, or join a group to meet and experience it together, please let me know.

 

Rev’d. Karen Spray                  01392 877400                         church@revdkaren.org.uk


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