Sunday, 6 August 2017

The Great Picnic

A Picnic

This morning we went on a picnic. It took a long while to find the perfect picnic spot, and there were a few arguments along the way.

There were fights over who was going to carry the basket. Then the picnic basket was too heavy. She was always whinging, he was being mean... and so on. Sound familiar to anyone? Then... where to have the picnic? One spot was too hot. Another spot had too many mosquitoes. Another place had no wi-fi. And then, we chose a spot with too many people.

Then the worst thing... Mum said we had to share our picnic spot, and share our food! But, was there enough to go around? Well, some of the other picnickers had some food to contribute - and the two troublesome teens had a change of heart and we shared our picnic together. There was chocolate fish, and 'fairy bread' (bread with hundreds and thousands sprinkled on top!)

And guess what? There was plenty to go around. In fact, there was enough left over, to be able to share with the rest of the congregation during morning tea. The arguments stopped (for now...), and everyone put aside their differences to enjoy spending time together at our picnic.

Feeding the Five Thousand

The story from the Bible, of Jesus feeding the Five Thousand, is one we've heard a lot. I love the part where a small boy offers up his basket of five loaves of bread and two fish, which Jesus takes and shares among the hundreds and thousands of people.

What was the biggest miracle - that Jesus was able to change those few loaves of bread into an abundance of food, or for Jesus to change the hearts of the people who were there to teach them how to share? What's the greater miracle for us? For Jesus to do all the work - or for Jesus to change our hearts and enable us to do it?

I think this story teaches us that when we receive the love of Jesus, and give that love freely to others, the love ripples out farther than we could ever imagine. We see the love of Jesus, and the power of that transforming love when people 'break bread together'.

Jesus is Lord

We sang Julie Wylie's song, 'Listen to the Waves, Jesus is Lord', a very cool tune with a groovy swing rhythm (thanks Monica for the awesome bass line, and Izak and Leilani on percussion - Leilani's rain stick really did sound like the waves!)

We thought Julie's song describes some pretty awesome picnic spots, so we used this as inspiration for our artwork. We created collages of picnics, where the waves were "whispering softly, Jesus is Lord", the birds were "singing their praises", "dolphins leaping and diving", "penguins shuffling by the sea" and children "singing and dancing, Jesus is Lord".

Come in and see our finished artworks hanging in the Chapel Street Gallery, and on the pinboards in the Awesome Rooms. A few are photographed below, and you can click on this link for more photos. Enjoy!

And if you managed to get to the bottom of this VERY LONG post, then enjoy this clip of Yogi Bear and the pic-a-nic basket! And remember... "A pic-a-nic basket holds... dreams!" Maybe the next time you go on a pic-a-nic, or watch Yogi Bear, you'll think of Jesus feeding the Five Thousand, and love and compassion and sharing rippling out like waves whispering, "Jesus is Lord".

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What is God Like?

 Listen to Rev Anne read this beautiful book, 'What is God Like?' by Rachel Held Evans and Matthew Paul Turner.