Thank you so much for your prayerful support of The Magdalene Project.
We appreciate you.
Your prayer makes a difference. We see answers to prayer in people’s lives being restored, step by step.
Join us if you can on the 3rd Thursday each month 9.30am.
Recently I listened to‘Thought for the Day’ on the radio when Revd Dr Sam Wells was thinking about ‘waste’. I particularly listened for approaches to our own inner waste-places, those parts of our self or our life experience that we struggle with or reject, He describes waste as not just a practical issue but represents everything in our lives we don’t have a place for or don’t know what to do with: maybe part of our personal history we consider a waste, a decision or choice we made that we regret, a year at college doing the wrong course, a relationship that didn’t develop in the way we had hoped, or an apprenticeship or job with an employer who is a bullying swindler!!
He went on to consider those parts of our personality that we’ve never known what to do with, useless skills and uncontrollable desires, disruptive habits.
These sorts of waste clog up our memories and block our self-respect.
Dr Wells said that when we grieve a loved-one, or see a long-cherished project come to dust, we are haunted by a crushing sense of waste. When we want to develop or grow in wisdom and grace, it is from among these memories, habits and disordered relationships that we look for change, healing, peace.
Dr Wells refers to each of the Gospels telling the story of Jesus feeding 5,000 people in a deserted place. These people had been so captivated by Jesus’ teaching, that almost no one had thought to bring food with them, and yet from a few loaves and fish, enough food was distributed to everyone there, that at the end 12 baskets-ful were left over.
But why go to the trouble of collecting up waste food in a hot country where food was hard to store or transport? The story shows us that in God, nothing is finally wasted. Dr Wells reflects that for most of us, our real losses, failures, and painful life experiences are not things we can just ‘flush away’. They can linger and fester. We can lose sight of Jesus along the way, like the disciples being slow to trust Jesus, when they had already seen him do amazing things.
When Julian of Norwich speaks of ‘All shall be well, and all manner of things shall be well..,’ far from meaning an easy-going optimism, she is hinting at a deeper assurance that, In God, even our suffering is not wasted finally. In feeding the 5000 Jesus is showing us who God really is. One who takes all that we give him from the depths of our being, and wastes nothing of our experience.
Many people coming to The Magdalene Project for support are coming to terms with very difficult, challenging and traumatic life experiences. Can we still believe and trust that in God nothing is wasted, even the deepest pain? That is the Christian hope. It is God who makes the difference for us all finally. He is the one who restores. God gathers up the crumbs, fragments and wounds of our lives. We do see amazing answers to prayer, as God restores a person, step by step.
We wish you a refreshing summer season.