touched by colour.

These photographs were taken at the wonderful Abbotsbury Subtropical Gardens in Dorset,England

The gardens were voted the HHA/CHRSTIE’S GARDEN OF THE YEAR 2012.

Alan Titchmarsh said of the gardens “One of the finest Gardens I have ever visited”

Each year during the autumn, the garden are floodlit given a totally different perspective on the vast array of trees and scrubs grown there.

Below is a small selection of my photos I took there on a recent visit.

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http://abbotsbury-tourism.co.uk/gardens/category/curators-blog/

Metal Giants

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The Pylons – Stephen Spender

The secret of these hills was stone, and cottages
Of that stone made,
And crumbling roads
That turned on sudden hidden villages.

Now over these small hills, they have built the concrete
That trails black wire;
Pylons, those pillars
Bare like nude giant girls that have no secret.

The valley with its gilt and evening look
And the green chestnut
Of customary root,
Are mocked dry like the parched bed of a brook.

But far above and far as sight endures
Like whips of anger
With lightning’s danger
There runs the quick perspective of the future.

This dwarfs our emerald country by its trek
So tall with prophecy:
Dreaming of cities
Where often clouds shall lean their swan-white neck.

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Sunset Shoreline.

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Hallelujah! You who serve God, praise God!

Just to speak his name is praise!

Just to remember God is a blessing— now and tomorrow and always.

From east to west, from dawn to dusk, keep lifting all your praises to God!

Ps 113;3 MSG

This photo shows a beautiful golden summer sunset shining on the Chesil beach, which forms part of the Unesco World Heritage Coast.

I particularly like the way the sun flare accentuates the silhouette of the fisherman and catches the crest of the breaking waves.

Countryside Colours

counrtyside colours

This photo represents to me the quintessential english countryside.

The rolling hills, the differing shapes and colours of the fields.

The natural stone walling.

The ancient St.Catherines Chapel nestles amongst the hill.

Jerusalem

And did those feet in ancient time
Walk upon England’s mountains green?
And was the holy Lamb of God
On England’s pleasant pastures seen?

And did the Countenance Divine
Shine forth upon our clouded hills?
And was Jerusalem builded here
Among these dark Satanic Mills?

Bring me my bow of burning gold!
Bring me my arrows of desire!
Bring me my spear! O clouds, unfold!
Bring me my chariot of fire!

I will not cease from mental fight,
Nor shall my sword sleep in my hand,
Till we have built Jerusalem
In England’s green and pleasant land.

William Blake (1757 – 1827)

The dorset countryside

Beautiful Bluebells

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The Bluebell

The bluebell is the sweetest flower

That waves in summer air;

Its blossoms have the mightiest power

To soothe my spirit’s care.

There is a spell in purple heath

Too wildly, sadly dear;

The violet has a fragrant breath

But fragrance will not cheer.

The trees are bare, the sun is cold;

And seldom, seldom seen;

The heavens have lost their zone of gold

The earth its robe of green;

And ice upon the glancing stream

Has cast its sombre shade

And distant hills and valleys seem

In frozen mist arrayed –

The bluebell cannot charm me now

The heath has lost its bloom,

The violets in the glen below

They yield no sweet perfume.

But though I mourn the heather-bell

‘Tis better far, away;

I know how fast my tears would swell

To see it smile today;

And that wood flower that hides so shy

Beneath the mossy stone

Its balmy scent and dewy eye:

‘Tis not for them I moan.

It is the slight and stately stem,

The blossom’s silvery blue,

The buds hid like a sapphire gem

In sheaths of emerald hue.

‘Tis these that breathe upon my heart

A calm and softening spell

That if it makes the tear-drop start

Has power to soothe as well.

For these I weep, so long divided

Through winter’s dreary day,

In longing weep–but most when guided

On withered banks to stray.

If chilly then the light should fall

Adown the dreary sky

And gild the dank and darkened wall

With transient brilliancy,

How do I yearn, how do I pine

For the time of flowers to come,

And turn me from that fading shine

To mourn the fields of home –

By Emily Bronte

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PEACE BE WITH YOU – WHAT DID JESUS MEAN?

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Jesus himself stood among them and said to them, “Peace be with you.”   Luke 24;36

Peace be with you but what did Jesus mean when he said this.

On Tuesday I went for a sermon prep walk, down to the coast guards cottages at Langton Herring on the Fleet in Dorset. It  was  so peaceful with an air of tranquility. It was so so peaceful, I cant really explain how I felt.Suddenly something spooked the birds and they started tweeting. In a field nearby a pheasant was calling and I suddenly became aware of the sound my feet were making as I walked along the gravel path  but this didn’t transcend the peace and tranquility. It was if the noises were God drawing my attention to the surroundings, say “hello, take a look, enjoy ,be inspired by the beautiful world that surrounds you”
I felt the sun on my face and just could’t stop but think what a beautiful part of the world, and how fortunate I am that God has placed me here.

His gift to me.

But it got me thinking ,what did Jesus mean. Was it just a greeting, Shalom, to his friends, is traveling companions or was it something deeper.

“Peace be with you” Those words are profound – through his gift of peace Jesus is healing their memories. They had vivid memories of their time with him, as fellow travelers on the road, but not all of their memories were good. There was the Garden of Gethsemane of course, the memory of how they had deserted Jesus, leaving him to face his trial and execution alone. And uppermost in Peter’s memory would have been the scene outside the high priest’s house when he had denied any knowledge of Jesus, and had sworn and cursed at the mention of his name. A memory that would have cut him to the quick, sickening him every time he thought about it, perhaps making him wonder whether he could go on living with himself. The sort of memory that only God’s forgiveness can heal.

And now the risen Jesus is with them, offering not anger at their betrayal, desertion and denial, but peace, healing and a new beginning. Their memories can’t be forgotten or wiped out; we know that in our own lives – yet they can be taken up, healed, and held in God’s peace. The power that bad memories have to blight and diminish lives is replaced by a greater power; the power of God’s forgiveness, won through Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross. That power, that peace, set them free and it can do the same for us today.

Then I thought about  Philippians 4:7 where we have a wonderful promise: “The peace of God, which passes all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” It is important to note the context of this promise, because that’s where we find the condition: “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God” God’s peace is promised to guard those who pray—with thanksgiving—about everything. This peace will transcend our ability to understand it.

The believer who places his or her full confidence in a loving God and is thankful in every circumstance will possess a
supernatural peace. An inner calm will dominate the heart. The faithful believer will know peace—his heart and mind are “guarded” by it—despite the tempest raging without. No one, especially those outside of Christ, will be able to fathom that peace. To most, it will remain a mystery how someone can be so serene in the midst of turmoil.

The peace that comes from being in a right relationship with God is not the peace of this world. The world’s peace depends on having favorable circumstances: if things are going well, then we feel peaceful; when things go awry, the peace quickly dissipates. Jesus made the distinction between His peace and the world’s vacillating peace: “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives” (John 14:27).

God’s supernatural peace surpasses natural understanding.

God’s supernatural peace is beyond our understanding.

God’s supernatural peace is personal to us all.

God’s supernatural peace is at the heart of out relationship with him.

God’s supernatural peace is for us all

Amen

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The Fleet, Weymouth ,Dorset