Celebrating Easter with passion! - 18 April 2019

Hennie Symington

And He said to them, ”I have  eagerly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer. Luke 22:15

Easter is a time for journeys ‒ not to Pringle, Betty’s, Gordon’s Bay or any other bay. Let this be a journey of the soul filled with passion as you follow Calvary, or Christ’s journey to the cross. It is a journey not to be missed, for more than any other Christian holy day, this is the event that confronts us with the essence of our faith.

The cross as the symbol of our Christian faith, is the juncture between heaven and earth. It couldn’t be simpler. A vertical line representing the connection between heaven and earth, and a cross bar reaching out to the world. And on the cross, the sum of all the love that one man could have for mankind.

The question is, how can we as postmodern Christians, who question everything, weighing everything and judging it too incredible for belief, experience something of the passion of Christ? Precisely by celebrating it with passion – not only celebrating it as a mere straggler, watching from a distance, but as a deeply touched participant.

Prayer: Father, bless us as we prepare ourselves on the eve of Easter to experience the immensity of the crucifixion and the wonder of the Resurrection. Amen

Forgiveness as a gift from God - 17 April 2019

Hennie Symington 

… and forgive one another as God forgives you in Christ. Ephesians 4:3

Life offers us endless opportunities to make mistakes. And often these faults and flops are imprinted on our minds where they are constantly replayed in our minds.

Man is indeed a strange creature. We love looking back, thinking “What if I married someone else?” “What if I studied this instead of that?” The list of “What ifs” is endless. Lot’s wife for one, was so concerned with what lay behind her, that she turned into a pillar of salt. We love digging up all the bad things that happened to us over a lifetime. Listen to those conversations at family gatherings where each one takes a turn at rehashing the past. “You were the favourite …” Or “I always had to do the dirty work …”, “I didn’t have the opportunities you had …” “What if I studied this instead of that?” And that while each one of them is alive and well, has a roof over their head and a white bread under the arm (figuratively speaking of course). That’s the way people are. So often we forget the “days of gladness” while and reveling in the hard times and, unable to let go of the disappointments, our losses, and the suffering and pain we’ve experienced. In the process life passes us by in a litany of recriminations and lost opportunities. However, the one who is mature enough to let go of the past and reaches out to what lies ahead, knows that every day given by God is a privilege and an unrenewable gift.

Lay down your burden. The Lord knows how difficult it is for us to lay down the pain and trouble we’ve seen. If you are weighed down by your burdens, write them down on a piece of paper. Then read them out loud and ask yourself: “What can I lay down at the feet of my Heavenly Father.” Then scatter them in the wind, and don’t look back, because waters that have passed, can never be milled again.

Prayer: Lord, how often do we stress about things that cannot be changed. Teach me to reach out to what lies ahead so that I can approach every day lighthearted and free in the knowledge that nothing can separate me from your love. Amen

Vier Pase met passie! - 18 April 2019

Hennie Symington

Hy sê toe vir hulle: “Ek het baie daarna uitgesien om hierdie paasmaaltyd saam met julle te eet voordat ek ly.” Lukas 22:15

Paasfees is ʼn tyd om op reis te gaan ‒ nie na Pringle-, Gans-, Sand- of enige ander baai nie. Dit is ʼn innerlike reis gevul met onrus, waar jy stap vir stap die passie van Christus op die kruispad meemaak. Dit is ʼn reis wat jy nie durf misloop nie, want meer as enige ander Christenfees, is dit die fees wat ons konfronteer met die essensie van ons Christelike geloof.

Die kruis as die simbool van die Christelike geloof, is die kruispunt tussen hemel en aarde. Dit kon nie eenvoudiger gewees het nie: ʼn vertikale lyn as die verbinding tussen hemel en aarde, en die dwarsbalk wat uitreik na die wêreld. En aan die kruis, die somtotaal van al die liefde wat een mens vir sy medemens kan hê.

Die vraag is, hoe kan ons as skeptiese, postmodernistiese Christene wat alles bevraagteken en alles weeg en te lig bevind in terme van geloofwaardigheid, iets ervaar van Christus se passie? Juis deur dit met passie te vier ‒ nie net as ʼn sameloper of ʼn toeskouer nie, maar as ʼn bewoë deelnemer.

Gebed: Vader, gee dat ons ons op die vooraand van Pase sal voorberei om die grootsheid van die kruisiging en die opstanding opnuut te begryp en te beleef. Amen

Ek glo in vergifnis as 'n gawe van God - 17 April 2019

Hennie Symington

Lê julle daarop toe om die eenheid wat die Gees tussen julle gesmee het, te handhaaf deur in vrede met mekaar te lewe.  Efesiërs 4:3

Die lewe bied meer as genoeg geleenthede om foute te maak. En meermale word hierdie blapse en foute in ons gedagtes ingeprent waar ons hulle tydig en ontydig in ons gedagtes ophaal. Ons keer telkens terug na ons mislukkings asof niks goeds daaruit kan spruit nie. Die Woord verseker ons egter dat “ons meer as oorwinnaars” is.

Vergeet wat agterlê en strek jou uit na wat voorlê. Die mens is inderdaad ‘n eienaardige wese. Ons kyk so dikwels agtertoe en wonder “Hoe sou dit gewees het om met iemand anders getroud te wees?” Wat as ek dit in plaas van dat gestudeer het? Die lys van “wat asse” is eindeloos. Lot se vrou was so behep met wat agterlê dat sy in ‘n soutpilaar verander het. Ons rakel graag al die slegte dinge wat met ons oor ‘n leeftyd gebeur het op. “Jy was mos die witbroodjie!”. Of “Ek moes mos altyd die vuilwerk doen.” “Ek het nie die geleenthede gehad wat jy gehad het nie.” “Wat as ek dit in plaas van dat gestudeer het?”  En dit terwyl ons springlewendig is met ‘n dak oor ons kop en ʼn witbrood (figuurlik gesproke) onder die arm. Dis maar hoe die mens is. Ons vergeet dikwels die “blye dae” terwyl ons ons verlustig in die moeilike tye. Ons koester dikwels die moeilike tye, die teleurstellings, ons verliese en die pyn en lyding wat ons ervaar het. In die proses beweeg die lewe verby ons in ‘n klaaglied van beskuldigings en verspeelde kanse. Die een wat egter volwasse genoeg is om die verlede agter te laat en hom of haar uit te strek na wat voorle, is die een wat weet dat elke dag uit God se hand, ʼn voorreg en ʼn onherhaalbare geskenk is.

Lê jou las neer. Die Here weet hoe moeilik dit vir ons is om die pyn en moeite wat ons ervaar het, agter te laat. As jy gebuk gaan onder jou laste, skryf dit neer op ʼn vel papier (ʼn grote indien nodig). Lees dit dan hardop deur (meer as eenkeer indien nodig) en vra jou af: “Wat kan ek aan die voete van my Hemelse Vader laat?” Skeur dan jou lys in repe en strooi dit in die wind (as jy langs die see woon, strooi dit in die water) en moenie terugkyk nie, want “met waters wat verby is, kan jy nooit weer maal nie.”

Gebed: Here, ons hou ons besig met dinge wat ons nie kan verander nie. Leer my om my uit te strek na wat voorlê, sodat ek elke dag ligvoets kan betree vry in die wete dat niks my kan skei van die liefde van Christus nie. Amen

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