This is the gist of the prayers that were used on the Sunday Morning service in Kirkcudbright recently. They are based around the Lord's Prayer, and various interpretations of it. I originally came across this idea of expanding the prayer over 30 years ago and have come across several published versions, and I am sure there are others around, just as much as I am sure others have had the idea as well which I do not not know about.
Having read several of these over the years I have collated my thoughts together for the recent service, mainly using the modern translation of the Message as inspiration in a way that seemed right in this occasion. Apologies in advance if it seems that the odd word or sentence has been copied from elsewhere. This prayer has not intentionally been taken from any specific source other than the Bible.
Our prayers this morning are based around the Lords prayer as recorded in Matthew, mainly using the modern translation the Message as inspiration.
Let us pray - Our Father in heaven, reveal who you are:-
Help us to really know you Lord, to bless, to worship, and praise you for all that you do. For your almighty power, wisdom, kindness, justice, mercy, and truth. Help us to live our lives - what we say, think, and do — so that your name will never be dishonoured, because of us, but always honoured and praised.
Your kingdom come:-
Rule us by your Word and Spirit in such a way, that we submit to you. Keep your church strong, alive and let it grow. Destroy the devil’s work and every force which works against you and against your Word. Do this until your kingdom is complete and perfect.
Do what's best— as above, so below:-
Help us to obey your will here on earth, without any moaning. Your will alone is perfect. Help us carry out the work we are called to do as willingly and faithfully as the angels do theirs in heaven.
Keep us alive with three square meals:-
Lord take care of all our physical needs. We acknowledge, that you are the only true source of everything good, and that neither our worry nor our work can do us any good without your blessing. Help us to give up our trust in ourselves, and to put our trust in you alone.
Keep us forgiven with you and forgiving others:-
Lord wash away all the sins that we have done, and the evil that clings to us, with Christ’s blood. Forgive us, just as we are fully determined to forgive any wrongs done by our neighbours, as evidence of your grace in us.
Keep us safe from ourselves and the Devil:-
By ourselves we are too weak to hold our own. Our sworn enemies; the devil, the selfish world, and our own evil desires, never stop attacking us. So Lord, take us and make us strong with your Holy Spirit, so that we may not give in, with this spiritual struggle, but may firmly resist our enemies until we finally win the complete victory.
You're in charge! You can do anything you want!
We have made all these requests of you because, as our all-powerful King, you not only want to, but are able to give us all that is good; It is your holy name, and not us that should receive all the praise, forever.
This is my review of the book “an Officer and a Spy by Robert Harris” which I have read recently. Up to now I have enjoyed all of Robert's books and this one did not disappoint, though it was a little slow to start with, but it quickly made up for this towards the end.
But let us move to what the story is about. It is set in 1890's France, and a certain Captain Alfred Dreyfus is convicted of spying. The twenty thousand spectators call for his death crying 'Death to the Jew'.
George Picquart, is witness to this as an army officer. He is then promoted to colonel and put in charge of the “Statistical Section” - the undercover spy and intelligence section.
As George progresses with his job, he uncovers another spy operating. Could there really have been two spies, or had Dreyfus somehow been framed. Gradually things go from good to bad, the more George uncovers. This is all the more compelling as it is a recreation of the scandal that became one of the most famous miscarriages of justice in modern times.
Though this is about an event that took place over 100 years ago, the comparison with the present day is frightening – justice corrupted in the name of national security and intelligence agencies covering up the truth, and perverting the course of justice. A small group of people standing up for what they believe in truth and justice.
Moving back to the book Robert manages to tell the story in a manor that is generally gripping, exciting and enjoyable. Made all the more so by the historical element to the narrative.
This was an enjoyable book and a good read. This was book 27 week 19 fiction 24 (audio book 5) non fiction 3.
This is my review of the book “The Hunger Games – Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins”, which I have just finished. This is the third book in the Hunger Games trilogy. The story line continues one month on from the end of the previous book “Catching Fire”. Normally I don't read one book after another with the same author, but the suspense left at the end of the last one made me want to just start reading this new book.
It continues the story line of Katniss Everdeen, and her friend Peeta Mellark. (Though is he still her friend??). Katiness has managed to escape from the last “Game” along with some of her fellow victors, and is now a leading light in the uprising against the power of President Snow in the Capitol.
Sadly to get to this point they have suffered badly both mentally and physically, and need to recover before they can prove their usefulness.
Katniss as the Mockingjay has come to symbolise the rebellion. As such she needs to be filmed fighting for the revolution, as an inspiration to the fighters, but obviously this has significant risks.
Sadly Peeta was not rescued when the other competitors escaped, so they need to mount a rescue mission to free him from President Snow's grip.
The story then progresses through a series of battles to the Capitol – Can Katniss get the president or will the peacekeepers, along with various automated defensive horrors kill her off first.
This book is a fantastic end to the story line portrayed in the trilogy, and keeps up the suspense right to the end of the book. It is as much a page turner as the previous one.
A really good, enjoyable, exciting, story – all be it in three parts. his was book 26 week 19 fiction 23 (audio book 5) non fiction 3. Half way through my 52 books that make up this list.
This is my review of the book “The Hunger Games – Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins”, which I have read recently This is the second book in the Hunger Games trilogy. It continues the story of old Katniss Everdeen, and her friend Peeta Mellark.
By forcing the government to save her and Peeta at the end of the first Hunger Games, she has challenged the authority of the Capitol. This challenge sparks a rebellion in the districts that supply the Capitol.
To save her family Katniss has to comply with the wishes of the government, especially President Snow, and does a victory tour of the Districts. Sadly this does not squash the rebellion, so the government comes up with a new set of games. The contestants this time are chosen from the victors of previous games.
Can Katniss survive this new challenge the game presents. Sadly the mortality rate is much higher, with the game itself killing off the constants as fast as they kill each other..The fictional world in which they are interacting is realistic cleverly structured and believable. I won't reveal any more so as not to spoil the plot line for anyone who has not read the book or seen the film, other than to say it has a pretty amazing twist near the end of the book.
This is a real page turner, and really exciting. I have not read a book like this for quite some time. The chapters were cleverly structured so that at the end of each one, there was a cliffhanger, just prompting one to carry on reading, so much so that I will be reading the third and final book in the trilogy next.
My only criticism is that this book would not make much sense if one has not read the first one, but other than that it was a great read. This was book 25 week 18 fiction 22 (audio book 5) non fiction 3.
This is my review of the book “The Scarlet Pimpernel by Baroness Orczy” which I have listened to recently as a librivox dramatic reading https://librivox.org/the-scarlet-pimpernel-by-baroness-emmuska-orczy-2/ whilst travelling up and down the motorway.
It is a really engaging story, and whilst one I sort of knew the plot, having seen either film or TV versions before, I found I did not really know it.
This book is the first in the Scarlet Pimpernel series, where we get to meet all the main characters. Sir Percy a wealthy English baronet who rescues French individuals (Astros) sentenced to death by the guillotine. He soon reveals himself to be a master of disguise, an imaginative planner, a formidable swordsman and a quick-thinking escape artist. With each rescue he taunts his enemies by leaving behind a card showing a small flower—a scarlet pimpernel. To hide his true identity, Sir Percy presents himself in everyday life as a dim-witted, foppish playboy. His secret is kept by a band of friends known as the League of the Scarlet Pimpernel.
But poor Sir Percy Blakeney's wife is being blackmailed to reveal the Scarlet Pimpernel. In exchange for her brothers life. Little does she know that in doing so she is putting her husband at risk as he is the famous Scarlet Pimpernel.
Only once she has given the game away not realising at the time that she is condemning her husband, does she realise what she has done. There then follows a chase across England to Dover and then over the Channel to rescue Sir Percy from the French.
A great story full of suspense, detail and atmosphere, especially the descriptions of the innkeeper and their inn in France. A very enjoyable book, so much so that we are now listening to the next one in the series. But as it is nearly 9 hours long it will be a few weeks before it gets reviewed here.
So this was book 24 week 18 fiction 21 (audio book 5) non fiction 3.
Over the last few days we have had a break in the dampness, and the yellow glow of sunshine has peaked through onto the ground. Damp warm conditions mean that the fertile ground has caused the grass to seemingly sprint in growth.
Though there is the risk of frost damage, we thought that as it was so long it would be wise to give it a trim, before it gets too long and very difficult to cut.
Also it was good to be out in the garden and making stripes across the lawn..To make the stripe the mower has a large flap of plastic/rubber which runs over the cut grass. This is held in place by a metal rod. Sadly during the process of cutting one end of this metal rod broke and the flap started to come away from the mower. Fortunately this was just when I had nearly finished. Only one strip left to do, but I had to stop there as I could not mow anymore with the flap half hanging under the mower.
t will be realtively easy to fix, with a couple bolts, washers and nuts. I was wondering about experimenting with an old leather belt to act as a large washer across the whole of the flap, but we will have to see...As the sun became shy again and hid behind the cloud and the wet stuff reappeared. Not having a garage, it is a job that will be much easier to do outside in the dry..Just have to wait a little longer.
So it is time for that cup of green tea and to think about the next project
You can see the garden for yourself if you book a self catering pet friendly holiday @The Shieling which is attached to Trostrie Cottage http://www.trostriecottage.co.uk
This is my review of the book “Alexander – The Sands of Ammon by Valerio Massimo Manfredi” which I read recently. This is the second book in Valerio's trilogy on Alexander, and continues on from Alexander – Child of A Dream telling the tale of Alexander's exploits.
These mainly concern the war with the Persian King and his Greek born mercenary Memnon. The vast numbers of troops detailed in the story are almost inconceivable, and they were of course designed to intimidate all enemies. But Alexander uses the skills and cunning he has learnt to capture and conquer the cites and the land. He gradually progresses around the Mediterranean towards Egypt.
When faced with a seemingly impossible hurdle created by nature he does not let this defeat him. He either builds causeways to cities on islands, or cuts steps in hillsides so he can go over cliffs and get round the back of the enemy. His exploits are truly amazing.
Then alongside this there is the ongoing investigation into his father's death. Who actually ordered the assignation?? and the romance between Alexander and Barsine, Memnon's wife.
As a book on it's own it would not be that interesting, but as the central part of the trilogy it makes a good read, and gives me the desire to read the final book in the series.
This was book 23 week 17 fiction 20 (audio book 4) non fiction 3.
This is my review of the book “I wish Jesus Hadn't Said That, but I'm Really Glad He Did” by Steve Timmis, which I read recently.
There are a number of teaching's Jesus gives us that are very hard to understand, let alone follow. “Take up your cross”, “Love your enemies”, “I did not come to bring peace but a sword”, “Go and make disciples of all nations” , “ You cannot serve both God and Money” etc.
Steve selects ten of these challenging teachings, and works through them trying to unpack them so we can understand what they mean for our everyday lives. He uses his insight to provide a serious challenge, which cuts across so many of our societies so call natural rights and desires.
This is a very challenging book, but extremely readable, giving clear precise arguments to back up what he is saying. Having got to the end of a chapter I sort of felt wow, was I brave enough to read the next.
The subjects he has chosen to discuss are extremely challenging and as such often avoided as they ask the difficult questions. He shows that by obeying God, rather than upsetting and preventing things, this enables us to live the life we were always meant to live.
I am glad that I have read this book and will encourage my friends to read it also, though will say it comes with a challenge warning. I will be looking out for other books that Steve has written.
This was book 22 week 16 fiction 19 (audio book 4) non fiction 3.
Dyslexic doodles on photography, food (growing, cooking & of course eating), faith and other fascinating things. This is a personal blog expressing my views.