Friday, October 07, 2022

What is your fixed point in life?

All photos courtesy of Unsplash

I love books. I always have. And over the years I have accumulated quite a collection of books. I should say I 'had' accumulated quite a collection – until our last house move. As we moved from a house with three large bedrooms and downsized to a bungalow with two small bedrooms, most of the books had to go.

It reminded me of a story of two men talking together.  One of them, who like me was an avid book enthusiast was complaining to his friend.

"My wife has been creating about my books,” he moaned.  “She says that if I buy any more books, then she’ll leave me!”

“That’s a bit tough!” said his friend sympathetically.

“Yes!” came the reply. “I shall miss her!”

Now my interest in books was never quite that bad, but I have always loved reading.  It started  when I was quite small. My mum, wonderful woman that she was, taught me to read before I even started school, and the reading habit never left me.

But the real fascination came when I started secondary school.  When I was 11, I attended Dynevor Grammar school which was situated in the middle of Swansea City Centre, and there, during my lunch breaks, I discovered “Ralphs”.
Ralphs was a second hand bookshop on Dillwyn Street on the edge of Swansea City Centre. It was an Aladdin’s cave, for although on the outside it was a small dingy frontage, inside it was a two storey shop stacked high with books of every genre.  I spent many happy hours there browsing and occasionally buying a book.

In 1982 I moved up to the NorthWest of England with my work, and, although we made frequent trips back to see our parents, I rarely went into the city centre. In 2002 when I finally found myself living back in Swansea, I decided I would revisit my old haunt and see if it had changed at all.
It had changed.  It was now a fast food takeaway. I had seen many changes in Swansea on my return, but this was probably the one that hit me the most.

We live in a changing world and change can affect us in different ways.  

Sometimes change is longed for, such as when people are living under a tyrannical regime. More often change is simply tolerated such as when we see a change in the law or government.   But probably the hardest change to cope with is when we lose the old and familiar things – the things that remind us of former days.  I always used to smile at my parents when they said, “When I was your age.....”  Now I find myself saying the same thing to my grandchildren. 

It is good to remember.  We have so many times in the Bible where God gave His people things to remind them of their past.  This was not intended to make them sentimental, but to teach and guide them for the future.  The world in which we live is changing fast, and we ourselves change.  When surrounded by change and uncertainty it is good to have a fixed mark upon which we can rely.  

The Lord Jesus Christ is the One who is just that to me – he is the One  who is the same yesterday, today and forever. Since the day when I made Him my Saviour, He has been an unfailing friend and guide.  In a world of uncertainty, it is good to know the One who is totally dependable.

Messages with Meaning
Written by Stephen Treseder For 542Day

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