Monthly Archives: June 2009

What I Learnt from a Mouldy Briefcase

BriefcaseI was carrying out much-needed clearance in our basement the other day and had reached the far end where stuff was piled high. Perched on the top was an old briefcase, that had been there so long is was gathering mould. I looked inside, thinking it could come in useful  for carrying some of my art materials.  It was  empty except for a sheet of paper. I turned it over to find a page of Oswald Chambers “My Utmost for His Highest” that had been typed out.

It was for February 4th “The overmastering majesty of personal power” and was speaking about Paul who said  he was overruled, overmastered, held as in a vice, by the love of Christ.  Ossie Chambers goes on to comment that very few of us know, what it means to be held in a grip by the love of God. Not our love for Christ, but Christ’s love for us!

All thought of clearance vanished as I read it over and over. It was as if this was a ‘God moment!’ Continue reading



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You’ve Gotta Laugh!

laughingI’m not sure whether the expression “You’ve got to laugh” originates from the north of England or is more widespread, but it’s often used when faced with a trying situation and means, “not sure what to do about this, but it helps to see the funny side!” In other words, a sense of humour can lighten things and help us see a situation in a right perspective.

My wife says jokingly, that one of the inscriptions on her gravestone will be “He made me laugh!” Surprising, as one of our small granddaughters once said that I have a sad face, but on the other hand  friends have said they like my smile! It seems then, that lurking somewhere in the melancholic/sanguine mix of my temperament, is a gift to make others laugh? Continue reading


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What Are You Thinking?

thinkingI was once asked “What do you think about most of the time?” I didn’t answer directly because I felt challenged, so went away and thought about it.

I am somewhat predisposed to turning things over in my mind, but when that goes on and on without closure, I call it worrying.

When I became an operations manager for our local water company I was on call 24/7 and found it difficult to switch off and let it all go to God. This was especially so during the longest and biggest drought in our area for decades. I didn’t know  where to go to get away from it all. Continue reading


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What is Normal?

All our young grandchildren are a delight, but there is one who is special. She has been diagnosed as being just within the ‘autism spectrum!’ That is the ‘label’ she has been given, as if to explain away her uniqueness. We refuse to accept such a label. She is who she is. For the first two or three years of her life her hearing was impaired. This disadvantage has been corrected and with encouragement and some heartache she is finding her own way through.

She is gifted and talented and we are proud of her. She has a vivid imagination and lives life to the full, can be very sensitive and often takes the lead in group play. But just now and again Continue reading

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The Greatest Gift

Most of us need someone to be there for us at some time in our lives and maybe, even be available to listen to others? Surely, this is the greatest gift we can give to another? To really listen.

I want you to listen.

You see …
I have an ache inside;
a sort of pain,
that really hurts.
It’s been there …
since I was a child.
I’ve tried to ignore it,
cover it over,
but it won’t go away.
It’s coming to the boil. Continue reading

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A Delightful Inheritance

My wife and I have just returned from a delightful week in a cottage shared with friends. We were in the heart of the Herefordshire countryside, which in my opinion is rural England at it’s very best. However, I’m biased as this was also the area where my family originated, going back to the 1600’s and earlier.

The amazing thing is that in some ways the countryside has changed little since those days. Continue reading

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Out on a Limb

I grew up in a small mill village, which some might today regard as an idyllic childhood. We were free to roam in complete safety in the streets, vast parkland and surrounding countryside and get up to all sorts of tricks. My mother used to tell people that I was ‘such a good boy!’ Little did she know!

One day we were playing on the outskirts of the village. Continue reading

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