St. Nicholas Church, Silton, Dorset

   St Nicholas Church
   Silton, Dorset
   SP8 5PR

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I have become a magpie.   I read a little of this, and a little of that.  This is not a habit I have deliberately cultivated, nor one which I particularly admire or to which I aspire.   Although I recognize it does have some strengths, just like the magpie.   So recently I set about in counterpoint to read a whole book from cover to cover.


Unfortunately, I can't exactly remember the title, but it's something about 4000 weeks - which is round about the number of weeks in an average lifespan.   The author, again I can't remember his name - it was a library book, in my defence, and I am not going to use a search engine - was seeking to jolt us into reflecting again on the preciousness of each week.   His thesis is that every book on time management is a waste of time, unless it is about how we use well the length of a lifetime.   He doesn't use this phrase, but in the end, he ends up talking about the sacrament of the present moment.


That is how do I, how do you, use this week, this day, this moment well, because it might be your last, and one day it will be, so best practice would be to practise today.   A lifetime is made up of moments.


Mary Oliver, a poet whose name I do remember, puts it another way, "Attention is the beginning of devotion."   And Jesus says the same thing in the Sermon on the Mount when he says, in reverse order, do not worry about tomorrow, consider the lilies of the field, and look at the birds of the air.   May we do so today.


Maybe He was looking at magpies - and buzzards and stonechats.


One with you in the love that unites us all,




Canon Peter Greenwood


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