Sunday, 21 December 2008

Consider the lilies

I thought that when I started this blog lark I'd be a bit more regular...until flu intervened (are blogs like vegetables?). However, I've been out of it for the past few days, suckered by a really nasty bug.

I also stated that I hoped to get to get a bit more into the outdoors again.

Well, here's a strange sort of optimism (uncharacteristically) from me at this time of year: this volatile virus has actually helped me, by shedding around 5 pounds from my rapidly expanding waistline!

Sustained by Weetabix and soup, and for two of these past few days only water, I managed a rare smile when it occured to me that all those Chinese takeaways had, in fact, been a wise move. I'd cleverly stored up enough essential fatty matter for this "Rainy Day". And although I reckon I'm through the worst of it, I'm not back on solids just yet, so more pounds could disappear. It just gets better and better!

Consequently, this could be the start of the long road back to fitness and, hey presto, the great outdoors.

And here's a lesson I'd do well to learn - if I could aspire to scale the heights of regular life with the same degree of optimism, I reckon I'd be onto a winner.

So why worry, it's all in His hands.

Consider how the lilies grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you, not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today, and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, how much more will he clothe you, O you of little faith!
Luke 12 v 27,28

Or, for the more secularly inclined:

"Rise up this mornin',
Smiled with the risin' sun,
Three little birds,
Pitch by my doorstep,
Singin sweet songs,
Of melodies pure and true,
Sayin, (this is my message to you-ou-ou:),
Singin: dont worry 'bout a thing,cause every little thing gonna be all right".
Bob Marley

Thursday, 18 December 2008

Sometimes we get wee reminders of why we do what we do for a living:

Parents, grandparents and kids come to the community centre looking for "Christmas Stories". The storyteller tells tales of dragons and children, and sings about Mary's Boy Child -Christmas in the '70's.

The children sit agog, sometimes listening, sometimes joining in. They listen, learn, light up the room with their infectious enthusiasm. They smile, laugh, shout, sing. Christmas is near! Christmas is near!

The adults bring their children to the community centre. Whisper it - they bring themselves to the community centre. For, through the children's excitement, laughter and songs, the adults are fulfilled. Through the kids' joyful expressions they remember Christmases past, goosebumps and grenadier guards, colourful parcels and turkey, Morecambe and Wise on the telly and Grannies and Grandpas coming to visit.

And so now they experience it together, they learn together by sharing. It's a mellow mix of past and present, a warm glow on a dark night.

Santa is here to hand out presents for all, including adults (as excited as the kids) who bashfully come forward to accept their free gifts. Christmas is for all.

God gave a free gift for all because he loves you - his son, a priceless gift. His name is Jesus. He offers Jesus to all. All - that means you! The whole of Heaven has a massive party when someone accepts this gift.

Make this the most special, exciting Christmas you've ever had. Just look beyond the trees and tinsel, turkey and trimmings. Brush past commercialism and materialism, and discover what Christmas is really all about.