Rev Chris’ Blog

Thought for the MonthReverend Chris Judson

Join me each month as I ponder life with all the highs and lows we encounter along the way.

I hope you enjoy my blog whose aim is to raise a smile as well as give food for thought.

As always, I would love to hear from you, so please contact me 01278 781147 or [email protected]

God bless you,

Rev Chris 

Rector for The Huntspills & Mark

May 2022 ‘Hold your head up!’

I love the month of May!  It’s not only because it starts with a Bank Holiday, but I’m sure that is significant.  It’s not only because I know lots of lovely people whose births we celebrate in May, though that also plays its part.  It’s not even because of the tradition of giving Lily of the Valley to mark May Day – though that does remind me of both of my grand mothers. It seems to me that May is a month of positivity and hope.  We are sufficiently into spring time for the weather to have become reliably warmer and many flowers to have bloomed beautifully.  Easter Day has been celebrated, with its stance against fear and its message of hope, and now is the time to engage with living our lives well. 

Ascension Day (26th May) is on the horizon, marking Jesus’ ascension into heaven.  This encourages us to look upwards, to see his glory, and yet to do so from where we are, with our feet on the ground – holding together the ‘not-yet’ and the ‘now’.  This reminds me of a seventies hit song by Argent, called ‘Hold your head up!’.  So many things in life can lead us to look downwards.  We can all find ourselves weighed down by worries and grief, and these things do require time and space. When the time is right, however, we need to figure out how to look upwards again – gently at first, but bravely too.  Only then can we play our part in building a better world, for ourselves and for those around us.

Although sometimes the problems in our world can seem overwhelming, and we just don’t know where to start, there are many ways that we can all make a difference.  Across our villages people have been raising money and providing support for Ukrainians over the past few months, which I’m sure will continue, in addition to the support provided for many other valuable charities.  Christian Aid week runs from 15th to 21st May this year, and in addition to supporting Ukrainian refugees, they are focussing on areas already struggling with the effects of Climate Change, where people have then been crushed by Covid and various conflicts, and are now reeling from the inflationary outcomes of Russia’s war on Ukraine.  Operating on a local level, Christian Aid provides ground-roots solutions, like drought-resistant seeds, as well as campaigning for Climate Justice –  seeking to create a world where everyone can live a full life, free from poverty – where everyone can hold their heads up!

May this month be one in which you can hold your head up – being aware of the wonders beyond, yet with your feet firmly grounded, so that you can then make a difference to those in need.     

God bless you,

Rev Chris    

(Rector for The Huntspills & Mark)    

P.S. We’re looking forward to all the celebrations of HRH Queen Elizabeth’s Platinum Jubilee in June, including our special church services on 5th June……do come and join us – All are Welcome

April 2022

Vagabonds with hope

‘Come all you vagabonds, come all you ‘don’t belongs’, winners and losers, come, people like me…’ so begins one of my favourite songs by Stuart Townend.  I don’t generally think of myself as a vagabond (someone who wanders from place to place without a home or a job) but I am sure that I have common ground with those who do. The essence of the song is that no-one has got life sussed, that we are all in need, and that we are all valued and welcomed by the God of love.

I’m writing fourteen days after the Russian invasion of Ukraine began.  Many have been killed, millions have fled, refugees are radiating out from their battered home country and the war continues to shock us all.  Watching the news is important, yet overwhelming.  Feelings of despair and helplessness abound. 

Into the midst of this I have just received news of a young couple expecting a baby – excited, yet unsure of the sort of world they will be bringing their child into.  I find myself finely pivoted between recollections of the Maternity Hospital in Ukraine that was damaged by missiles this week, and the incredible expression of hope that a new baby fundamentally is.  As the sunrise after a stormy dark night, hope refuses to be extinguished – it filters through the smallest of cracks and reaches the darkest of corners.  Volodymyr Zelenskyy’s passionate declaration about light winning over darkness, and life winning over death, expresses hope and truth on so many different levels. 

As we approach Easter this year, I’m sure our thoughts and prayers will be with all who suffer – around the world and especially in Ukraine.  As the Holy Week journey leads us to reflect on the passion of God, giving all and suffering on the cross, our hearts and minds are with those who are in turmoil and pain.  We may feel that we are powerless, yet prayer is active, and leads us onwards into further action. Already physical donations and money have been sent from our villages to help those in need, and I am sure this will continue.  No doubt much more will be required of us in the weeks and months ahead, not only in the economic challenges that we will face, but especially as refugees are welcomed and true hospitality is shared.  As words grow into actions, may we be encouraged by the universal welcome of God, who recognises us all (vagabonds, ‘don’t belongs’, winners, losers – people like me!) as precious and beloved children. 

Above all, may the message of Easter inspire us to live in hope and be guided in all things by love. 

God bless you,

Rev Chris