Tuesday, June 30, 2020

A lot can change in a minute!

A lot can change in a minute. We all know the cliches about a week being a long time (in politics) and a lot can happen in a day but the truth is that life can change completely in less than a minute. 

For instance if you are in the wrong place at the wrong time something can happen that you never envisaged and suddenly everything changes. I’ll never forget when eleven year old Rhys Jones from my home city of Liverpool was in the wrong place at the wrong time. He lived in a respectable home in a decent area of the city. His mum worked in our local Tesco Store. He was just an ordinary boy enjoying life, loving his football and playing out, as boys do. But on that sad day he died in the crossfire between two rival gangs. For the Jones family the 22nd of August 2007 everything changed in a moment. His life was ended, his parents and family were devastated and his blood was on the hands of the young man who pulled the trigger and those who were involved in providing the weapon. 

I apologise if the recall of this tragic incident drags up painful memories for any who read this. I cannot express my sympathy enough for your loss and the lifelong grief that results from it. I’m not writing to try to explain why such horrible things happen - apart from the obvious fact that people are capable of doing evil things, as well as good, and that they will be held responsible for what they have done on the future day of judgment. I am writing to remind you of how life can change irrevocably in a moment. 

So, what are the lessons we need to learn and what difference can it make in our lives? There are many!

Enjoy the moment!
Value and cherish your relationships!
Don’t take people for granted!
Make the most of the time you have!
Things are not that important, people are!
Tell people you care and appreciate them while you can!
Try to live without regrets!
As much as depends on you live at peace with others!
Forgive and forget!

Sunday, June 21, 2020

Father’s Day

Father's Day first began because of a woman named Grace Golden Clayton from Fairmount, West Virginia in the United States of America.  The story goes that she was inspired to do this after a mining disaster killed 362 local men. Their deaths orphaned more than 1,000 children and Grace wanted to pay tribute to the children’s dead fathers - as well as her own.

Each year in the UK Father’s Day takes place on the third Sunday of June. It is one of those dates we really don't want to forget, but it is often shrugged off by us dads as a lot of fuss about nothing - an attitude which can, possibly, betray something of what we feel about the role itself. On Mother's day we tell mothers how great they are and on Father's day we tell fathers what they need to do to be great fathers - it's almost as if a mother "automatically" becomes great while a father must continually work at it! 

There are a number of "description" given of a father:-
a person who growls when he feels good and laughs very loud when he's scared.
a person who gets very angry when the school reports aren't as good as he thinks they should be.
a person who hurries away from the breakfast table, off to the arena which is sometimes called an office to tackle the dragon with three heads: weariness, work, and monotony.
a person who gives his daughter to a man who isn't nearly good enough so he can have grandchildren that are better than anyone else's.

Someone has said (and I believe it is true) that "A Boy loves his mother, but he follows his father." That places a tremendous responsibility on fathers.  God truly is the most wonderful Father of all!  The fact that He would love the unworthy, save them by His grace and adopt them into His family proves this.  Add to this the fact that He looks out for His children and takes care of them in spectacular fashion.  I am glad that He is my Father today!

Can we honestly say that we are saved by the grace of God?  Do we know that He is our Father and we are His children.  If we can’t say that, then we need to come to Him right now and call on Him. If we will, He will save us!  He can help us get all our priorities in their proper order.

If we have needs in our lives and need help; there is no better place to bring those needs than to God the Father Himself.  He invites us to come before Him and get the help we need right now.  If we want to know God as our Father and know how wonderful He is, we need to bow at His feet and tell Him just how we feel about Him.  I have a sneaking suspicion that He might like that!

Used with permission Messages with Meaning (21/06/20)

Thursday, June 18, 2020

Who would you ‘take the knee’ for’

The Foreign Secretary has said he would not "take a knee" in support of the Black Lives Matter movement, arguing that the protest is "a matter of personal choice".

Asked on Thursday whether he would take part in the symbolic show of support, Dominic Raab said on Thursday: "I take the knee for two people; the Queen and the Mrs when I asked her to marry me." The Independant Thursday 18th June 10:30

So here is my question. Who would you take the knee to? I understand the symbolism of ‘taking the knee’ to demonstrate disgust at how black people have been treated. I agree they we must all stand up for the dignity of every human being. Whether they are born and unborn, young and old, whatever their mental state, social status, colour or race we must do this. 

Saturday, June 06, 2020

Saving Lives - Describing a Hero

A plaque was unveiled in the waiting room near platform 6 at Carlisle Railway Station on 17th December 2009, in memory of a former signalman, Bill Taylor. While on duty on 1 May 1984 Bill realised that something had happened to prevent the brakes automatically stopping the rear section of a freight train from running away. Recognising that in the darkness the driver was probably unaware that the rear section of the train had become uncoupled, Bill knew he had only moments to act. The locomotive and the front part of the heavy freight train that was still coupled to it were allowed to run forward into Carlisle Citadel station. Still under the control of the driver, this part of the train was brought safely to a standstill.

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