As many of you know, Ian and I have just returned from two weeks holiday in the South West. The first week was spent in Devon, the second in Cornwall – two contrasting locations. Devon’s verdant countryside and hedges and glorious rivers, reminded me of scenes from The Wind in the Willows, such beautiful places to walk in and admire. In Cornwall we took a cottage on the top of the county’s highest hill, on the edge of Bodmin Moor. It was stark, and we were surrounded by relics of Cornwall’s industrial past. The view from the cottage was amazing, we could see for miles right over to Dartmoor. It was another kind of beauty, and equally compelling. There was so much to be thankful for.
When reading Paul’s letters to his various young churches, you will notice he invariably begins by giving thanks and praise to God. The idea of giving thanks to God is an important aspect of Paul’s ministry and he encourages us all to give thanks. Saying ‘thank you’ is not just about being polite, it is principally about recognising the importance of building up and maintaining relationships. We do not exist as an island, entire of ourselves, we live as individuals in relationship and our actions impact others. To give thanks in humility is to recognise our place in this economy of relationship. To give thanks to God is to acknowledge his influence in our lives and world – all things come from him. We are encouraged in our prayer life, first to give thanks, then to acknowledge our failure and finally to intercede for others. So however difficult or even desperate the situation it is good, indeed it is vital, to pause and to give thanks for the many blessings we have received and we enjoy.
It is good to give thanks
It was good to have so many guests join us for our monthly lunch in St Denys last week. Anne McBride and her team go to great lengths to make the tables look attractive and the food delicious, and always with a special theme. Next month our lunch will be on Wednesday 11th July when we will be celebrating the Wimbledon tennis championships as we look forward to the finals the following weekend. Newcomers are most welcome, do let Anne or a member of clergy know if you would like to join us, so that we have enough food.
With every blessing