This morning was lovely! Catching up with Church Family, having caught up with my Mum and Dad yesterday.
I bought this T-Shirt the very first time we holidayed on the In-Laws first Narrowboat, from a shop in Lllangollen. It works very well with my Dog Collar and made the point this morning as I took up the reigns at All Saints again.
At the end of the service we went outside and stood amongst the wild flowers and prayed and then I prayed the blessing. It was a wonderful, joy filled morning, with a lovely ending together.
Still more work today – a wedding rehearsal and an evening service in one of our Partnership parishes (My colleague is now on Sabbatical and our Curate has moved and is soon to be a curate no more so it’s just me for nearly three months. I’ll need a break after that!)
So my images today? Well I’ll start with this one…
I was pondering what I’d learned from my time away that I could share in Church today and was inspired to write “The Beatitudes for Boaters!” So here they are.
Blessed are those who pass on tickover, for they shall not spill the tea
In other words, think about those around you – don’t let your hurry hurt them. Take time to care and don’t let selfishness blind you.
Blessed are those who find an Elsan point when the cartridges are full,
for they shall be relieved
Rubbish builds up, in our hearts as much as our casettes and tanks. Take every opportunity to deal with the rubbish whilst you can. (For more information about loos on boats see Poo Bags and a Cross)
Blessed are those who find armco, for their boat shall be easily moored
The metal pilings are a godsend on some streaches of River/Canal (particularly the Kennet and Avon!). Look out for things God has given you. They are there to help. Look around and you will see them!
Blessed are those who take note of the cill, for their boat shall never sink
The Cill (sill) is like a doorstep at the top end of a lock. It is invisible going downhill until the water level drops. If you let the back of the boat catch it will do this! There are warnings on EVERY lock If you don’t pay attention to warning signs, things will go badly wrong.
Blessed are those who have bird seed, for they shall never be short of a friend
Always be ready to offer hospitality; tea, lunch, even a cream tea in Goring Lock. (See May the Fourth be with you)
Blessed are those who can tie knots, for their boat will not drift away
It it really important to learn some key skills before rushing into something. The same is true with faith. We need to work on our skills and abilities so that we are ready when Jesus calls.
It is too late to learn knots on a windy day!
Blessed are those who help at locks, for they are more precious than Gold
As Eliza Doolittle sang – Don’t talk of Love – Show me! Helping someone says more about love than a thousand words. If you want to show someone the love of Jesus then offer to help them. Volunteer lock keepers are fab and yes that is Caen Hill!
Blessed are the Gongoozlers,
but more blessed are those who do more than stand and watch
Being a disciple is NOT a spectator sport. There are too many Gongoozlers in our Churches – don’t be one – especially the sort who don’t cheer when you get things right but jeer when things go wrong!! Don’t just be a spectator!
Blessed are those who are friendly, they are a blessing to all they meet
Smiles are infectious. Think about what your face looks like and be a blessing to everyone you meet. There are parts of the country where smiles are harder to get. Try anyway!
Blessed are the passing cyclists who help with the swing bridges,
for their children will be blessed
This lovely family taught their children that helping others is fun. We need to teach our children and our grandchildren the Be-attitudes!
So those were my Beatitudes for Boaters – and these are His, which are, unsurprisingly, much better!