Rev. Dr. Scott Peddie

Conjectures of an Eclectic Christian

A favourite short poem of mine was written during the Victorian era by William Ernest Henley. ‘Invictus’ is a classic blend of Stoicism, cultural and a biblical reference.  With respect to the latter, in the fourth stanza Henley alludes to Matthew 7:14, ‘Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto …

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For those who are interested, I have a second website dedicated to my role as a Logotherapist & Existential Analysis. Logotherapy was developed by Psychiatrist and Holocaust Survivor Prof. Viktor Frankl; its premise is that humans are motivated by the pursuit of meaning throughout their lives and in individual circumstances. In his book ‘Man’s Search …

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It was English poet Alfred Tennyson who wrote: “Hope Smiles from the threshold of the year to come, whispering ‘it will be happier’” And so we embrace that hope as we move inexorably towards a new year. For many though, it can be difficult to focus entirely on the future. The year gone by may …

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The question of how we best use our time, and the direction our energies are focused on, are not new. Yes, the pace of life has changed, but the core principles are the same.  The biblical narrative – in both the Old and New Testaments – bares witness to this.  There is, for example, the …

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Nativity Narratives: Realism & Transformation

December 25, 2017

suffering

It may seem somewhat maudlin to reflect on the topic of suffering on Christmas Day – a day of joyful celebration and expressions of togetherness. Christianity presses home the point that yes, suffering is real, but amidst that emotional, mental and  physical turmoil, there is transcendence and an encounter with a broader reality.

The joy of Jesus’ birth is brought into sharp relief by the inevitability, and the horror, of the crucifixion.   For example, in Isaiah 53:3  it was prophesied that Jesus would indeed be treated appallingly: “He was despised and rejected by men, a man of sorrows, and familiar with suffering. Like one from whom men hide their faces he was despised, and we esteemed him not.” One could say with validity that the shadow of the cross accompanied Jesus throughout his earthly ministry.

Jesus embraced suffering; he did not seek it out, nor did he attempt to avoid it. His life was a cogent memorial that we are all presented with myriad challenges, and that joy, and suffering, are often intertwined in the unfolding narrative of our existence. But crucially, God has the last word: suffering is transient, and through the incarnation, brought forth boldly into our consciousness by the nativity story, it is transformed. As we read in John 1:5, ‘The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it‘.

 

 

As a Logotherapist and Existential Analyst I’m often asked what my favourite Viktor Frankl quote is. Such a difficult question! There are so many profoundly moving and insightful words contained in his writings and now very firmly ensconced in his legacy. If I had to choose though, it would be a sentence I’ve clung onto …

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Here is the text of my sermon from today’s service at Cliftonville Moravian Church: Grounded in Reality; Transformed by Hope! On Wednesday evening, I was teaching dream analysis in Glengormley to a group of therapists and other interested individuals.  Here, in our church, I have spoken briefly about dreams as they occur in the Biblical …

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DREAM ANALYSIS COURSE Mirabilis Health, 7 Farmley Road, Glengormley, Co. Antrim, BT36 7TY First Workshop: 1 March 2017 (7-9pm) This 6 session dream analysis course is open to everyone. By understanding your dreams better, it is possible to live a more meaningful and purposeful life. The course tutors are Rev. Dr. Scott Peddie (Logotherapist & Existential …

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The text from the Holocaust Memorial Service held in Cliftonville Moravian Church on 29/1/17: In our Old Testament lesson, the prophet Micah brings to the fore a community that has suffered much hardship, but has brought justice and mercy to the forefront of their thinking.  Interestingly, there is a recognition that with such enormous injustice, …

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