Through the storms God is with us

This Sunday’s gospel has the disciples panicking in a storm, all the while Jesus is serene, undisturbed, almost as if he were on a different boat, on a different lake. But he’s not, of course, he’s here right with us, and it is in the storm, when afraid, confused, lost, that he is there.

Dear Parishioner,
Puckeridge. That’s a good name for a place. It’s in Hertfordshire. Drage’s Mead, another good name, is a field on the edge of the village, which in 1959 was, for the first time anyone could remember, ploughed and sown, but what came up was not just the crop planted, but the signs, laid bare by how the corn responded to what lay beneath the soil was the revelation of what was sort of known, but had been largely forgotten. For, this quiet corner of the world on the way to nowhere, was revealed to be a veritable Roman Gyratory, where Ermine Street running due north from London, took a slight left turn and headed off for Lincoln, and as it did so crossed Stane Street, the big East road from Colchester. All this I know from reading Christopher Hayley’s lovely little book, The Road, although he is more interested in another exit from this Roman Staple’s Corner, which disappears under a hedge on it’s way north past the village of Braughing, which I mention in order to point out the marvels of English orthography; if you need a little distraction, how many ways could it be pronounced?


Now, you might be wondering where I’m going with all this road stuff; to a boat trip on a lake, obviously. This Sunday’s gospel has the disciples panicking in a storm, all the while Jesus is serene, undisturbed, almost as if he were on a different boat, on a different lake. But he’s not, of course, he’s here right with us, and it is in the storm, when afraid, confused, lost, that he is there; when thinking about something else entirely, he is there, when not even thinking at all, he is there always waiting for us. Because he is completely what we are, where we are, and completely God. Always, already.
Thus we can see John the Baptist, whose birth we mark on Monday, greeting Jesus at the feast of the Visitation which we celebrated a few weeks ago, even when both are still unborn. A child is born, something new, but is as if he had always known Jesus would come. He is the forerunner who proclaims the coming of the Messiah, yet he does so in the dress and words of one of the ancient prophets, a new/old man who makes his aged parents young again.


So when, in the second reading Paul tells us, for anyone who is in Christ there is a new creation; the old creation is gone and now the new one is here, we must understand that the new creation has always been here, waiting for us, always, already, like the mighty Roman roundabout, hidden in plain sight beneath Drage’s Mead.

Art & Prayer Workshop

Sat 10th Aug


Join us for an art and prayer workshop on Saturday, 10th August 2024 in the Bulbeck room from 10am-12pm. 

Reflect on scripture and saint’s writing through art-making. All welcome.

Growing in faith events