Chaplain's Corner – Middle School

Recently I came across a prayer by Revd Austin Fleming titled Push my Buttons Prayer which encourages readers to reflect on how they interact with others post-COVID-19 lockdowns.

‘Lord, it's likely that sometime today, someone might push my buttons, perhaps challenge my good will, even misread my intentions, possibly try my patience, or go so far as to judge me in haste, test my kindness or do all of the above ... Give me the grace I'll need at such times, to respond with patience, to trust and accept, to listen carefully, to reach out in peace, to be fair and just, to anticipate goodness in all my words and deeds ... I know this is a lot to ask, Lord, but I need your help to do for others as I'd have them do for me. Amen.’
- Revd Austin Fleming

Hopefully the easing of restrictions has enabled each of us to reconnect, and with God’s help improve our interactions with others. A particular stand out moment for me in recent days was spending part of the Melbourne Cup public holiday watching a replay of the 2020 AFL Grand Final with my parents. While it meant sitting outside watching the TV through a flywire screen, this was the first time we have watched a game together this year and as passionate Richmond supporters it was a game we will all long remember. Truly 2020 continues to create many new firsts and gives us opportunities to appreciate all the good things God has given us that perhaps at times we might have just taken for granted.  

Looking ahead to the remaining month at school, Baptcare, which is the welfare sector of the Baptist Church, is seeking items for their annual Christmas appeal which will be passed on to those impacted by COVID-19. If members of the Middle School community are in a position to be able to provide unwrapped donations, they can be left under the Christmas tree outside the Middle School Chaplain’s Office until the 4 December. Baptcare has provided these guidelines for those who might be able to assist:

Age-appropriate gift suggestions:
0-2: Child-safe soft toys, brightly coloured rattles, toy mobiles.
3-5: Blocks, cars, dolls, thick crayons/chalk, age-safe toys, books, art/craft materials, jigsaw puzzles, dress-ups.
6-9: Lego, stationery, backpacks, sport items, books, musical items, dolls.
10-13: Board games, costume jewellery, board games, books, pens, diaries/journals, vouchers.
14-18: Books, bath/body fragrances, creams, board games, vouchers.

Finally, may the following prayer help guide your decision-making in the coming days.

Let us pray. God of hope, in those times when we experience change, surround us with the support of family and friends. Guide decision makers with your wisdom. Give us courage to overcome our fears, and listen to your son who told us how to build a future in which all may prosper and share. Amen.

Scott Bramley
Middle School Chaplain