From Ashes 12: Metamorphosis and Sophronismos – Neuroplasticity and the Renewed Mind

As I approach my 30th birthday, which brings with it much reflection on all that God has done in my life so far, I have found myself drawn again to one of the most well-worn parts of my the Bible – Psalm 139. For many, this is their favourite psalm, and it is certainly oneContinue reading “From Ashes 12: Metamorphosis and Sophronismos – Neuroplasticity and the Renewed Mind”

From Ashes 11: The Poor in Spirit and the Fainting Minister

Poverty in spirit is the porch of the temple of blessedness…Till we are emptied of self we cannot be filled with God. Stripping must be worked upon us before we can be clothed with the righteousness which is from Heaven. (C.H. Spurgeon, “The First Beatitude”) I remember a dream I had once, when I wasContinue reading “From Ashes 11: The Poor in Spirit and the Fainting Minister”

From Ashes 10: Søren Kierkegaard – Original Sin and the Fear of Possibility

“When you’re absolute beginners,” folk singer M. Ward tells us, “it’s a panoramic view, from her majesty Mount Zion, and the kingdom is for you.” What he seems to suggest here is that, at any beginning point, there appears an infinite potentiality to life, stretching out like a majestic panorama before us. W.H. Auden, in hisContinue reading “From Ashes 10: Søren Kierkegaard – Original Sin and the Fear of Possibility”

From Ashes Part 9: The Philosopher’s Wretchedness

When I consider the brief span of my life absorbed into the eternity which comes before and after…the small space I occupy and which I see swallowed up in the infinite immensity of spaces of which I know thing and which know nothing of me, I take fright and am amazed to see myself hereContinue reading “From Ashes Part 9: The Philosopher’s Wretchedness”

From Ashes: Sturm und Drang

Out of the storm, He comes,                         He comes, clearly, speaking victory –             comes with calmness in His step                         and silence for each dread.   Watching mountains quake,                         they quake to see such sureness step upon             these waves of doubting fury;Continue reading “From Ashes: Sturm und Drang”

From Ashes: No glitch

No glitch in the creation plan and yet my mind skips and repeats over old tracks as though, as though in early days a scratch a fleck of dust crept in, crept in, upset the balance of it all. With every beat the tension in these ancient grooves – this wax – threatens now toContinue reading “From Ashes: No glitch”

From Ashes Part 8: No work for tinkers

It is autumn in my home town of Melbourne as I write these words, and outside the University library the streets are bathed in orange, golden and golden-brown leaves. It is a glorious sight, one of those moments where something seemingly hopeless – the dying of leaves – can be simultaneously so beautiful. I wasContinue reading “From Ashes Part 8: No work for tinkers”

From Ashes: The Crushed Flower (For Therese of Lisieux)

The flower that is me, Crushed – in crushing, free. Yet still I wilt here to see This dying beauty. Until You tread in victory, I languish in me. Crushed by foot, by sea Of crowd’s apathy, I will Yet trust, Christ, in Thee, Thorn-crowned on a tree, Your will Crushed; in crushing, free TheContinue reading “From Ashes: The Crushed Flower (For Therese of Lisieux)”

From Ashes: Sonnet

Though fearfully and wonderfully made, There are abscesses where my dirt is stored: See here, the time I learnt to cry, to wade In mud and mire, and hurt of my own accord. Though Grace has breathed its breath in me, I still Retain the sick fruit of Adam’s broken soil; In pain, in guilt,Continue reading “From Ashes: Sonnet”

From Ashes Part 7: Weariness

  Living Vapour Drag your heels – the ground sinks beneath your thudding feet and dunes defy your constancy.   Watch the sun – it rises and sets, then runs to the place from whence it has set while your heavy feet echo.   And is there a thing of which it is said, HereContinue reading “From Ashes Part 7: Weariness”