Zeph Daily 57

Image may contain: 1 person, text that says ""If I knew where the good songs came from, I'd go there more often." Leonard RANG REEE Cohen"

Good morning! It’s John with a picture of Mr Cheerful to set the mood this morning!

When I was younger, and teaching at Wycliffe, I used to coach football teams. Today’s thoughts start with football. Bear with me…
I still watch the beautiful game critically; more perhaps, as an analyst than a supporter. And I still, in my head, and sometimes out loud, pointlessly from my armchair or even my seat so far from the pitch at Valley Parade—call out instructions.:
“Look for the pass!”
“Move the ball on”
And with increasing desperation (and at a higher pitch) “Will you get in a position to receive the ball?”

The Blessed Bob Paisley (Liverpool) used to say that the player with the ball must always have a choice of where to pass it and that, obv., requires his/her teammates to “get in a position to receive the ball.” This means losing your opponent and moving, possibly running, into a “space” where said round object can be passed to you. By definition if the passer has a choice, one of you will be disappointed as you were not the chosen one. If, however you didn’t get there, you definitely won’t have the ball at your feet and won’t be able to exercise your gifts with it. And you’ve not helped your team. In football parlance, “Hiding.” We may even place a limit on the number of times we will go into the place where we can receive because we have been disappointed in the past, feeling overlooked and unappreciated or we may have a totally understandable reluctance to put ourselves in the way of pain.

Lord, help us see your possibilities and make ourselves available…

Let me tell you, Hettie the cat, while not a great footballer, is the living exemplar of “get into position.” The presence of a human in the kitchen, meal time or not, brings her determinedly from wherever she was (probably) sleeping to take up position by the fridge. Somebody might…something might just fall out of the fridge when the door is opened. It is with unquenchable optimism that she lives her life. Even though often she is disappointed, she goes again and again ever hopeful in spite of experience.

Lord, help us see where (and when) we need to be to receive your blessing…

This lockdown, eased or not, makes it physically difficult for us to be there, in places where we can receive God’s grace, and we may not be able to visit our favourite “thin places” but it has never really been about the physical. Elijah had to get himself out of the cave to hear God’s re-commissioning, but that’s as much about the courage required as the steps he had to take. God’s presence is not dependent on where we are, but we need our heads to be in “a position to receive”

Lord, help us find the courage to be there…

The leper who got himself into town where Jesus could heal him, the woman who felt she just had to touch his clothes both managed to move themselves; the men by the pool and through the roof had to be brought by someone else who recognised their need. You will have your own scripture points of reference…

We may often wonder why we went there, whether we made the right choice. If indeed, it was our choice (cf Jonah). Our timing may be out (usually too soon) but we need to be there. For ourselves, for others. Wherever there is.

This song has been in my head for days, waiting for the opportunity…

Lord help us see where we can assist others to be in a place where they can receive your blessing, your healing grace…

Go into God’s world. Bless and be blessed. Sunday’s coming…

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