The United Reformed Church Chesham
November 2006 Newsletter
I was trying to recall when I last went down a slide! It was many years ago when as an adult I took some young children to a park and they were hesitant to go down the slide on their own. It can be quite frightening to climb the ladder, to realise the height you have reached and then know you must let go to zoom down the slippery slide. But the thrill at the end and the sense of achievement sends you back for more!
The latest exhibition at the Tate Modern includes five giant slides. Visitors can literally dive feet first into art, taking a whirl down one of the slides, which fill the huge space of the Turbine Hall, turning it into a playground. Starting from the fifth floor and twisting and turning in an intricate pattern, the slides are as visually striking as they are fun to use. Carsten Holler, the creative artist, is well known for his slide exhibitions, exploring themes of freedom and release as experienced whilst sliding. This is definitely for adults as well as children. Watching the people sliding is nearly as much fun as taking part. We all can benefit from re-visiting childhood joys! When the children were brought to Jesus, he said that the Kingdom of Heaven is for such as these. Simply enjoying life and showing that enjoyment spreads happiness.
The Pharisees were critical of the disciples for not fasting or keeping to the strict letter of their laws. Jesus said that the disciples should be celebrating because Jesus was with them. Should we not celebrate too? If we look to God, we are promised the Spirit will be with us every day, every hour, every minute. There may be difficult times darkness in our lives, trials of illness or change, but through it all, there will also be moments to recognise and celebrate God with us. Times to let go and whizz down the slide. As we look around the world, we see many people struggling through poverty and yet we also witness how their faith in God can shine through the hardships, as they worship with great joy.
There are many times when we need to be solemn or serious in life, but letís also make room for sliding to freedom and release, to relax and experience God. Perhaps as part of our building plans we should build a huge slide and encourage people to 'let go and let God'!