St Bride's: Sermons

May You Keep a Good Lent

The poet R.S. Thomas writes in one of his poems:-

"As has been said, the point of travelling is not to arrive, but to return home laden with pollen you shall work up into the honey the mind feeds on."

"What are our lives but harbours we are continually setting out from, airports at which we touch down and remain in too briefly to recognise what it is they remind us of"

Thomas is using the idea of the journey as a metaphor for human life. His poem suggests that all that we do is a searching , for our true selves, for meaning, ultimately for God. I find that a very attractive image for our pilgrimage of faith, because it encourages us to keep exploring what we believe, to be on the look out for the pollen of new ideas and insights that can become the honey on which our hearts and minds can feed. This image of faith suggests movement, a sense of adventure, a willingness to take risks and to put ourselves in God's hands.

As we approach the season of Lent at St Bride's, we are also launching our Re-endowment Appeal aiming to raise a capital sum of £3.5 million to ensure that our beautiful church and wonderful choir are maintained and that the church's seating capacity is enhanced. We certainly need that sense of adventure and faith which R. S. Thomas speaks about. There may be other challenges which you face in your own life or church which demand a similar willingness to take a risk and launch out into the deep.

Thomas ends his poem, which is called "Somewhere":

"Surely, there exists somewhere, as the justification for our looking for it, the one light that can cast shadows"

Christians believe that light is the person of Jesus Christ. Our journey or pilgrimage is to follow his shadow, to catch his light and reflect it in our lives. Lent is a good time to extend our faith and stretch ourselves so that we return "laden with pollen which you shall work up into the honey the mind feeds on." And with that kind of spiritual sustenance almost anything seems possible.

May you keep a good lent.

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