We had a very nice retreat day today with people from our Academic City congregation and Jebel Ali congregation joining together. If you weren’t able to make it but are able to come next Saturday, Maggie Le-Roy, our diocesan retreats facilitator is doing the same again then for Holy Trinity Church Dubai.
As I sat there vaguely looking out of the window as she talked about how we fail to see so much that is right in front of us I was looking at the line of trees and bushes on the boundary wall outside and that’s all I saw. She began saying that one useful tool is to take a picture frame (at which point she handed out a bunch of small frames for us each to take) and place it over something to see it properly, isolated from the things around it. As she said it I began to look specifically through one pane of the window and captured by that one pane was a beautiful flower which I had not really seen because all I’d seen was the hedge as a whole. The 8 panes around it framed it nicely and the beauty of the view suddenly came into focus. Then I looked only through the pane next to it, leaving out the flower, and saw in that the heavily laden seedpods of a tree which again I had not really seen until then. She used this as a tool to help us see deeper into how God might speak to us more clearly if we only learned to look more closely. The same principle works for listening I think.
Five lucky people are this week having an individually guided week of prayer with Maggie. They began with a meditation on the Bartimaeus story (Mark 10.46-52) when Jesus asks him ‘what do you want me to do for you?’. Pray that their eyes may be opened to see wonderful things (Ps. 119.18).
In the week afterwards (Sunday 2nd-Wednesday 5th November) Maggie will be giving ‘taster sessions’ in different types of prayer – 10am each day in our church library in Jebel Ali, 7.30pm each day at Holy Trinity Church Dubai. All are welcome, those of big faith or small. Come and see, better.