Saturday, 3 January 2015

TW'sV on bridges and love-locks

Dramas crossing the Severn
What fantastic fun it was crossing the river Severn by car ferry.  Depending on the strength of tidal flow you would sail a mile upstream (or down) before eventually crawling back in the quieter waters by the bank to reach the slipway.  Thick mud everywhere!  Brilliant.

Then an amazing suspension bridge was built; towers and cables first; deck sections were floated out at slack high tide to be pulled up into place after all the mud had been washed off them.  Not such an adventure but still quite impressive.
Wikipedia's picture of sections being added
Next came a second crossing of awesome size, three lanes each way not two, but less exciting except occasionally when strong winds blow frozen shards of ice off the superstructure.  It's as if the Severn has been domesticated and we take the connection for granted.

Bridging ideas
Sermons ought to be like bridges linking two ideas together.  Some form an amazing construct in biblical times but don't link it to anything useful.  Others relate passionately to a contemporary issue but find nothing to say about it.  The best sermons link biblical times to today's world and tomorrow's challenges in a way that encourages traffic to flow.

It doesn't mean answering all the questions because that's patronising and dis-empowering.  It does mean linking two ideas and inviting listeners on a journey of discovery.  It is powerful because God's Spirit brings alive the unchanging truths of God's loving purposes for us all.

These bridges between our mortal lives and the span of eternity are never to be taken for granted.  They should be treasured above all else.

It started on a bridge in Paris
Lovers wrote a message onto a padlock, fixed it to the bridge, and threw the keys into the river Seine.  After a while the weight grew so much that the locks had to be cut off to preserve the bridge.  The trend has appeared in London, especially on footbridges with convenient wires.
Lover's locks on the Millennium 'wobbly' Bridge
These symbols of hearts locked together by the gift of love can be powerful, although if you look at the bottom left lock it doesn't look like it might be for longer than three years!  God is locked in his covenant of love for us.  After all he probably made the universe to share his love.  God is love.

As we make our way through 2015 with its excitements, joys, tedious moments, and all the other strands that make up our lives, it might be worth engaging with the extraordinary gift of God's love for each of us.  Through Jesus Christ he offers us a bridge to eternity, fresh beginnings through forgiveness, and a sense of fun alongside a sense of faith.

Any questions?
A significant number have been in touch about last month's View and commented how it helped them understand something of the privilege of grieving well.  If you have any questions or areas you would like me to consider in one of my Views do get in touch.  Contact details are included on the Ridgeway website and in The Register Magazine.