Don’t poison your disciples: Get a pro to do a passover of your oven

Sjesus bbqummer is well and truly here, and even though Easter is now a distant memory in our collective Christian consciousness, I can’t help but think of Jesus’ last supper. Passover is a special time for many faiths. The eating of Christ’s body and drinking of his blood with the people you love and care for is replicated in any meal. Its essentially why we say a prayer before any meal; we give thanks to Our Lord for giving us the chance to eat such wonders with the people that are most precious to us. His passing gave us the chance to do such things, so it only follows that when BBQ season hits us in the summer time, I get to thinking about grilling in a theological light.

Conceptually, they are confusing. Take the image of a group of people gathered around a metal structure, ritualistically charring meat for eating and the act cleaner manalmost sounds pagan. At the very least, thoughts of Satanism are conjured and that’s almost enough to put one off their dinner entirely. In reality though, the tradition is one of community and sharing, more akin with our ancestors way of eating than any dark art. There are still negative connotations that the British, especially, associate with BBQs. The under cooking of pork products is something particularly feared, almost to the level of the Hasidic. As a result, sausages are often burnt beyond any recognition, leaving no doubt in any of the consumers’ mind that they will be saved from the horrors of food poisoning.

The preparation of meat is something that should always be handled with the utmost care and attention. For most people, separating cooked from uncooked, preparing before use by date and keeping meat refrigerated is enough. But often, one of the most important factors overlooked is the cleanliness of the BBQ or oven. Something we never to think to clean, unless we’re moving house, the oven can often to be the source of great illness. After mulling this over, I recently ordered in a professional to clean both my BBQ outside as well as the interior and exterior of my home oven. For someone who often breaks bread with friends and family in his own home, I knew that no prayer or grace could save my guests fro food poisoning, if the grill was dirty.

Although, in Jesus’ time, they did not have knowledge of such things as bacteria or salmonella. I’m sure they knew that cooking in filth would not be good for the health. As the saying goes: ‘Cleanliness is next to Godliness’. So don’t let your BBQ or oven be your Judas this summer. Keep your disciples healthy and get your oven cleaned professionally, so that your next BBQ won’t be your Last Supper!

Noah way of knowing!

Doom and gloom is abound! Our glorious British Summer Time is being invaded by the rains again, and its on these rainy days that I’m inclined to get a little bit mopey. Waking up to grey skies and witnessing storm clouds on the horizon is hard to do in late June, but if we look back to Genesis – we know of one chap who probably had to deal with a lot worse. Noah is, of course, the man I’m talking about. God gave him decent enough warning ahead of time, months in fact – so he was more than aware that he’d be spending a whole forty days in the rain and muck. The upside to this is that Noah knew to embrace each beautiful day that he was given. Whilst building the great Ark and collecting all the animals (a leviathan challenge unto itself) Noah could at least do so happily, cherishing each and every day under the wonderful sun that God had gifted him.

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‘Uncertainty and doubt clouds our future, like the rain cumuli scudding across the landscape…’

In a way, we can almost be a little envious of Noah. His was a grueling ordeal to be sure, but being given a glimpse into what would be the certain future is something that us, people of the 21st Century, have yet to be gifted. Uncertainty and doubt clouds our future, like the rain cumuli scudding across the landscape that I witnessed this morning on my awakening. Bu there are ways to steady ourselves against this tide of possibilities. By taking control of the physical properties in our immediate vicinity we can ground our sense of calm and better prepare ourselves for what is to come. One way of doing this is to keep a clean and organised home. I know this sounds like rather basic advice to give, but a tidy, decluttered house really does help to settle the mind. By mastering and owning our physical spaces, we can hold better dominion over the spaces in our mind.

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‘…a tidy, decluttered house really does help to settle the mind.’

So if you’re feeling a tad down – don’t! Remember Noah and give your house a tidy, declutter your kitchen, get your garage sorted. Let your mental space become a reflection of the peace and serenity that is all around you, and watch your worries and doubts disappear.

Terrence

A freelance writer and lifestyle guru who is feeling much better for tidying his bathroom cabinet.

Jesus Laminates

Its a well known fact of the Bible that Jesus was a carpenter. Although there’s more words devoted in the good book to his more fantastical miracles, such as the feeding of the five thousand and walking on water, we often overlook his more common place miracles that go unmentioned. Talk to any modern day carpenter and they will tell you why the act of carving wood is an almost miraculous process. Taking a God-given material such as wood and transforming it using such simple tools as a chisel and hammer, transfers the power of creation to the humble man. With just his hands and his own mind, the carpenter can create items such as beds and chairs that can provide the most simple yet precious comfort to those who need it.

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Parquet or Laminate?

Take more trees from the forests of God’s Earth, strip them down and set a team of designers to work on the base materials. Now, with the power of cooperation and the miraculous leaps of technology (that have granted man more control over the planet’s resources) these teams of men can take the bare earth and clad it in beautifully polished laminate flooring. Suddenly, what was once a raw and powerful creation of God is now a refined, smooth surface with real purpose. On these floors a house can be built and, within that house, a family raised. This family, raised with the God-given and man-made comforts of the carpenter can go forth with the resilience and energy necessary to master more of God’s resources.

If Jesus was born and grew up as a millennial, do you think his day job would still consist of working with wood?”

For what is a carpenter, but a miracle maker? Taking an organic material and transforming it into something of use for the rest of the world. If Jesus was born and grew up as a millennial, do you think his day job would still consist of working with wood? There are many natural resources that we transform for our own devices, he could be a metalworker attending to the smooth body of a high powered-sports car or even a humble plastic surgeon taking a chain of silicon-oxygen molecules and reshaping a person’s image, both physical and mental. In a very real way, we can all attempt to reach out to Jesus’ vocation as miracle worker. Transforming our ideas, turning them into actions, and releasing the results to the world to germinate more ideas in the minds of others.

Connecting With People

It feels like these days we have a hundred and one options for contacting people, but few for making a real connection. It’s hard to tell whether the internet is a blessing or a curse for genuine human connection – it’s much easier to say that back in the day we wrote letters, called round each others’ houses, and knew each other well.

But weren’t we just socialising with the same people over and over? Did we really make more connections than now, or were we just forced to interact with the same type of people?

communication

Like many things, it can go either ways. Certainly the internet has been bad for some people; leading them into gambling addictions, losing them money through phishing scams, even losing real-life relationships because of too much time spent in front of the monitor. But it’s also been an amazing way for people to meet likeminded individuals, through interest sites, social media and chat rooms.

Some people have found a lifeline they would never have had without the internet, and it’s opened their eyes to new opportunities and horizons. It’s allowed the disabled, the anxious, and the timid to find other people like themselves. Heaven knows how many suicides it’s prevented.

fist bump

But that doesn’t mean we should stop connecting with people on real terms – we shouldn’t lose our ability to talk face-to-face, or make important physical connections like touching a shoulder or hugging.

That’s why I would suggest that we each try to take some time out in the next week to make a genuine, human, IRL connection with someone.

 

It could be someone you’ve never met, but wouldn’t usually talk to, like a homeless person who might have been blindly ignored all day. Or you could make a point of forming eye contact with a friend or acquaintance you’re usually too afraid to. Or even take the plunge and meet an online friend (only if you absolutely know who they are, and you are capable of looking after yourself, and you meet in a public place – there’s no need to be reckless) you might have known for years but never dared to really meet.