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10.30am Family Communion

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St George's Church,
Wrotham, Kent

JULY...... from the Rector: Rev.Edward Wright


I was searching the other day for a car key that I needed. I had used it recently, so began going through some jacket and coat pockets. No key. I looked in the most likely spots, and then in some of the ‘tidy away’ places in case I’d left it lying around. Still no key, back for a double check in the coat pockets, nothing … oh, NO!    Does anyone else find that problems which are really comparatively trivial in the scheme of things can quickly grow out of proportion?

Then I put my hand in the pocket of the trousers I was wearing, and there it was, all the time. Apart from feeling pretty stupid, I was surprised as to how I’d missed it - I am fairly certain I had checked there first.

Missing something which is right under our noses is surprisingly easy to do. Perhaps once we think we have a problem, we tend to jump to the conclusion that the solution is bound to be difficult and so overlook what’s close at hand.

Maybe many might miss the solution to problems that are much more serious than lost keys, simply because it seems too obvious and easy. I’m talking about the sort of problems that can affect our whole sense of well-being and happiness.  Issues such as feelings of worthlessness or failure; bitterness or resentment, that cannot be let go; guilt or shame. Such things can be like chains padlocked to our hearts and minds, weighing us down and restricting our freedom to be the people we would like to be.

I believe the key that can lead to our release is actually close at hand, all too often missed because it seems too simple. With centuries of Christian faith behind us in this country, is there a tendency to overlook the familiar message that Jesus Christ brings ‘Come unto me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.‘? His invitation is to ‘all’ – everyone is included, but not everyone responds.

Too easy a solution?  Maybe there is also another way in which Jesus Christ’s message is too ‘close’ - we may sense it’s too close for comfort. Might we be inclined to overlook Jesus’ invitation because to do so would mean risking an openness that we think would leave us vulnerable?  

We all have experiences of hurt, shame, guilt or inadequacy at some time. We may react to these by trying to strengthen the walls around ourselves, resisting intrusion, tightening our guard. We want to make it more difficult for anything or anyone to get at us. The trouble is, in keeping others out we may also keep out the One who can bring healing –we only have one heart! And sadly, while closing in the negatives, we can also shut in a lot of the positives that could help ourselves and others to flourish.

I once saw this point powerfully illustrated in a church talk. The lady lifted up a sharp kitchen knife and closed her fingers carefully around the blade, referring to it as a hurt or pain from the past. While her hand was clasped, it was obvious that if anyone tried to take it out, it would cause a lot more wounding. Only if she opened her hand could the knife be safely removed. God can take the knives from our hearts, but we have to risk opening them to Him first. And as we open up, we are more able to recognise and enjoy the positives as well.






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VOCE Concert in Church
15 July at 7.00pm
Reserve Tickets: £10

Wrotham Music Festival
Friday 25 - Monday 28 August

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