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Lyrical Riffs

Lyrical Riffs

Readings with repetitive, arresting phrases.

Wednesday Riff: This Holy Ground

This footprint, this turf, this moment, This carpet, this concrete, this rocky path, This holy ground. This church, this stadium, this field, This shop, this cinema, this school, This holy …

Wednesday Riff: Streetwise

I really love the way you’re rooted in reality, Well acquainted with sweat and spit and stress, Acquainted with fears and grief and frustration. A human being, moved into our …

Wednesday Riff: Christmas King

And so this festive season falls once more, The Autumn hues melting into hopeful wonder, Perhaps snow will twinkle like so many diamonds, Sprinkled liberally across the winter ground. Carols …

Christmas Riff: Christmas Presence

The myrrh rolls down the ages, as does the frankincense and gold, Three gifts now etched in history, in songs and stories told. Strange gifts for a baby, not a …

Wednesday Riff: Wherever

In the house, on the street, In the places where we meet, In the bath, or on the loo, When we’re making the stew. When we’re huffing and puffing And …

Wednesday Riff: Heroes

That person on the street, That stranger on the seat, That quiet old man, That woman with a plan, That cleaner, that assistant, That person in a hurry, Those faces …

Wednesday Riff: The Now and the Not-yet

The glimpses of full life, The offerings of love and help, The moments of peace and calm, The now and the not-yet. The reminders of a better way, The signs …

Wednesday Riff: Longings

Don’t want to be told who I am, By the flash and the pressure, Of the advertising scam. Don’t want to be told what I need, By deceptive messages fuelling …

Wednesday Riff: Your Choice

Thank you Lord that you choose us, No reservation, no love held back, Thank you Lord that you choose us, Not because we are perfect, But because you are gracious …

Wednesday Riff: Remembrance

For all the precious lives given, For all the lives laid down, For those who served And continue to serve. For the courage and the quiet strength, For so many …

Wednesday Riff: Mercies

With each new dawn and with the fading of the day, We choose to think on the gift of a moment of goodness. Though we are often worn down by …

A Tuesday Riff: Eagles

Why are we so down, why do we think God has forgotten us? ‘God is not on my case,’ we might say, ‘His focus is elsewhere.’ Have we forgotten so …

Radiance

Let there be light, Good light, strong light, warm light, So that those walking in darkness May see the way to go. The light shines in the gloom, And though …

Some Autumn Thoughts: Heroes

The nights close in, as the veil of autumn falls, With tumbling daylight hours, and its golden leafy sprawls, Lights twinkle from the skies, and through partly curtained windows, As …

Wednesday Riff: Fear

Perfect love can drive it out, a love beyond our own, The fear that can grip us on a daily basis, Fear of the past, the future, the present, Of …

Tuesday Riff: Awareness

‘Now one day,’ the prophet says, Perhaps standing in the town square as they speak, ‘The earth will be filled with the awareness Of the glory of God, as the …

Wednesday Riff: Bones

Bones are popular this time of year, bones and cobwebs and darkness, ghosts and grim apparitions in white sheets, and masks fixed in a permanent scream. So it is, that …

Peace on Earth?

Peace on earth, and goodwill to all, The longings rise up, the questions, the call. Peace on earth, promised long ago, When the tiniest child arrived here below. Peace on …

Wednesday Riff: Running on Empty

Running on empty, running on full, Your grace is the fuel that helps face it all. Running on empty, lost for words, Struggling to achieve, to be seen or heard. …

Wednesday Riff: Holy Trudgery

Keeping going, nothing spectacular, faithfully walking, Long obedience in a good direction, Trudging on, setting your face, inspiring others, Drawing them to look where you are looking too. One foot …

Wednesday Riff: Pruning

I am the true vine, and my father is the gardener. He prunes every branch in me that bears fruit. Lord, that’s easy to read, trips off the tongue, But …

Wednesday Riffs: Song & Gratitude

Gratitude If you had not entrusted yourself to us, Where would we be, I wonder. If you had not entrusted yourself To that young poor couple in Bethlehem, If you …

Wednesday Riff: Gratitude

If you had not entrusted yourself to us, Where would we be, I wonder. If you had not entrusted yourself To that young poor couple in Bethlehem, If you had …

Wednesday Riff: I Still Believe

I still believe, though I’m often haunted by doubt, I still believe, though the road goes uphill at times. I still believe in truth though life has its shams, I …

Wednesday Riff: Psalm 136 Revisited

We are born. We cry. We fill nappies and drink milk. His love, his kindness, his caring presence is always with us. We grow. We struggle. We learn. We tumble. …

Wednesday Riff: A Prayer for Peace

Lord we pray today for peace in your world, For those working to bring peace, For those longing to live in peace, For those with the power to offer peace. …

Wednesday Riff: On Prayers and Praying

What of our prayers and praying? They are like a hand reaching for help and comfort And something solid for ourselves and others, A song we make up as we …

Wednesday Riff: All

To offer it all, our whole being, the bits we like and the bits we don’t. Like Jacob wrestling with an angel, we wrestle in our love for God, We …

Wednesday Riff: Open Hands

To live a life with open hands, I think must be a wonderful thing, Risky, and vulnerable, of course Yet also free of the compulsion to hold onto things, Free …

Wednesday Riff: Fuel

It matters What we put in, What we take on board, What we absorb and hold on to. Or to put it another way, The saying goes: Feed the healthy …

Ps23

Lord, for ourselves, for those we care for, And for those who lead us at all levels, Please would you be our shepherd today. Guiding us, providing what we need, …

A Prayer

Give justice to our leaders, O God, May it top their to-do list. Help them judge and guide your people in the right way, Let the poor always be treated …

Wednesday Riff: Fretting

Fretting We fret about so many things Surviving, success, stability, Being accepted, being strong, Our looks, our finances, our family. Those we love, those we like, those we fear, Our …

Wednesday Riff: Psalm 24

Far from random, no accident or evolutionary hiccup. But a plan for meaning, a people known and designed. Flawed yes, so flawed, but offered a rescue plan. A daily beginning …

Wednesday Riff: If

If you are the Way, the winding path, Then surely nobody knows how to get home Without you. If you are the Life, the source, Then perhaps nobody breathes or …

Wednesday Riffs: Twilight and Calling

Calling Lord we long for you, As dry ground longs for rain, As sports fans long for a win, As weary travellers long for rest. Lord we thirst for you, …

Wednesday Riff: Salvation

A many layered gift, Moving us from darkness to light, From fear to compassion, From rejection to welcome, From lost to found, (Though we may struggle to find ourselves at …

Wednesday Riff: Three

A welcoming figure, Standing here on the road to life, Waiting each day for us to return, Limping up this potholed path, Our hands and hearts and minds Empty enough …

Wednesday Riff: Ordinary

Lord, please, tune us in to your ordinary whispers, and the signs of your presence, in the regular and ordinary. Show us the footprints and fingerprints you leave, throughout each …

Wednesday Riff: The Spiritually Poor

Blessed are the spiritually poor, Those who struggle at times, Those who find the going tough, Those who do not feel very spiritual. Those who find the narrow road a …

Wednesday Riff: Heart Song

The human heart is rather like an old attic. It is a place of storage, a place of memories. We wander through it and discover things long forgotten, things we …

Wednesday Riff: Refuge

Not about the right words, Or the right background, Or best behaviour, Not about religion or being earnest, Or the right spiritual credentials. But a place of refuge, A safe …

Wednesday Riff: FHL

Faith, hope and love, How we need them, Yet we so easily lose sight of them. Faith, like a flickering candle, Battered in each day’s breeze. Hope, the compass that …

Wednesday Riff: Star of the Weak

Today we may not feel as if we are Star of the week, Again. Just feeling ordinary, nothing special, Aspiring to a level we will never make, And yet… and …

Wednesday Riffs: Known & Dreaming

Known Eliashib and Hassenaah, Baruch, Zaccur, Jedaiah, Meremoth and Azariah, Palal, Rehum, Hashabiah, Zadok, Jadon, Malkijah, Hanun, Shallum, Rephaiah. You may not know any of these, Or even say their …

Wednesday Riff: A Place of Calm

I lift my eyes up to the mountains, To the sky, to that wide open plain above The trees, the homes, the skyscrapers, To that space beyond the borders, Beyond …

The Hills We Climb

He is with us on the hills we climb, (Often feeling like mountains to us) Hills we cannot avoid, Hills of our own making, The hills thrust upon us. The …

For Easter: The Son

Heat, bugs, and temptation, 40 days, the pressure on, then Starts his mission, jampacked, A rollercoaster that’s a fact. Stories, wisdom, healing… A man down through the ceiling, Meets a …

Thursday Riff: For us

He has made this troubled wilderness his home, He’s walked through the valley of the shadows here, This Good Shepherd, come to save his sheep, The king in dusty, creased, …

Wednesday Riff: Hold On

Hold on to the good stuff, The encouragements and smiles, Those things that spur you on, Those things that lift you and Point you in the right direction, The lessons …