A Christian’s heavenly journey with his feet on the ground. Treasures shared that are discovered along the way.
Please note that this blog has now moved to: "Senior Eagle walking with Father"

Monday, August 03, 2009

"walking with Father" has moved

A reminder that I have moved "walking with Father" to WordPress and combined it with my other blog.
You will find it on
Senior Eagle walking with Father and look forward to meeting you there.

Important: Blogger readers may find it helpful to update the 'Following' list on their dashboard with my new WordPress URL, as I will be deleting this Blogger blog very soon.

So click on Senior Eagle walking with Father where you will find a welcome.



Monday, June 15, 2009

Who 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 she will ask a question or do or say something a bit quirky, outside what would normally be accepted as the social norm for the given situation.
But who are we to dampen the tremendous spirit she has, there could be a potential genius in the making. In reality, it's often the sort of thing she does, that many 'normal' adults may wish they could do or say, but keep quiet in case they may offend - or feel shamed?

This makes me wonder, what is normal, who is normal?

In many group situations whether, business, office, club and especially in some church and Christian fellowships, there is an expected way of behaviour and way of doing things. But sometimes this expectation to conform can be confining and stunt progress. Daring to be different may rock the boat and there will be pressure - real or perceived - to conform. I once overheard a conversation regarding a club member, "she's not really one of us!" I don't know, but perhaps 'she' was just a bit different and some were finding that 'difference' embarassing or maybe it revealed their own longing or inner pain.

Most of us in some way or another are 'dysfunctional, and haven't yet realised the full potential we have in Christ. We are instructed in the Bible to lay down our lives, for the sake of the wider 'community', but before we can lay down our lives we need to 'get a life.' It's Father who shows us who we really are, if we ask, and as we are all work in progress, we need to accept the differences in our midst.

So I urge us to do two things:

Go all out to follow the individual path God has for us and discover what we are made for even if this means living with other's misunderstanding.


accept and embrace the differences in those around us.

"For the body itself is not made up of only one part, but of many parts. -- As it is, however, God put every different part in the body just as he wanted it to be. There would not be a body if it were all only one part! As it is, there are many parts but one body. So then, the eye cannot say to the hand, "I don't need you!" Nor can the head say to the feet, "Well, I don't need you!" 1Co 12:14-21 New International Version


Thursday, June 11, 2009

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.

Can you listen and
put your agenda to one side?
Give me your attention,
and be there for me?

I don’t want you to fix it
or make it better.
I just need to know
I’ve been heard,
and just possibly ...

I need to know
I’m safe with you,
that you won’t tell,
because I’m afraid
and ashamed
of what may come out.

But ...

You’re looking at your watch.
Your gaze is elsewhere.
Am I boring you?
I know you have problems.
Perhaps another time?


"If the person you are talking to doesn't appear to be listening, be patient. It may simply be that he has a small piece of fluff in his ear." - Winnie the Pooh

“Remember this, my dear friends! Everyone must be quick to listen, but slow to speak and slow to become angry.” James 1: 19 New International Version


Tuesday, June 09, 2009

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. The country lanes, often lined with ancient oaks, on the whole are the same, except the dirt surface has been replaced with tarmac. Some old farm buildings are still standing including timber-framed houses in various states of repair and even older churches.

It was a really good feeling to soak in these pastoral scenes, including cattle and sheep grazing in lush green meadows by the side of a meandering river, all bathed in brilliant sunlight. It was idyllic, but don’t be deceived. That was the rural setting then, but the realities of living in those times for most were hard and come the industrial revolution the working conditions were often appalling. My ancestors were God-fearing, hard working, stoical artisans, but life was hard and they were used to ever-present poverty and grief. I am thankful for and welcome the former inheritance - which, together with my upbringing has helped shape me - but have sought freedom through Jesus from the latter.

It’s good to look back and be thankful, but I was reminded that as Christians we have an incredibly delightful inheritance. We have a new home with Father that is as old as the hills, but lasts for ever. What’s more we don’t have to wait for our inheritance, we can experience this life-changing ‘gift’ right now, giving us a taste of what is to come. There have been difficult times when I have thought my lot was far from being a ‘pleasant place’, but am learning that God only allows what He can use to bring us closer to Him and prepare us for our everlasting future with Him.

I find that just to think and meditate on this touches me to the core.

“Lord, you have assigned me my portion and my cup; you have made my lot secure. The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; surely I have a delightful inheritance.” Psalm 16:5-6 New International Version


Saturday, June 06, 2009

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. In the middle of the field we discovered a scruffy apple tree and there on a high branch was just one apple. I was dared to climb up and get it and not to be outdone I started to clamber up, cheered on by my friends. It was higher than I thought and felt a bit unnerved as I gingerly wrapped my legs around the branch. I really felt out on a limb as I inched my way along the bough, which was beginning to bend. Just then the farmer appeared, striding across the field. He looked angry! The other boys ran off, but I had my eye on that apple. Just as I grabbed it the branch broke and I fell to the ground on my stomach, winding myself. The farmer was fast approaching, so I ran off, but forgot the secret way across the boggy stream and was soon up to my knees, with the farmer standing on the edge, waving his stick. I extricated myself and made my way home wondering what my mother would say about the state of my shoes and socks.

I can look back now and see how significant that episode was. As a child I had a sense of adventure that somehow, over the responsibilities, trials and pressures of my adult years got dimmed. However God, in His infinite love and wisdom saw into my heart and wasn’t going to let it stay that way. He didn’t want me to stay in my ‘comfortable nest,’ so He allowed circumstances to come along to bump start me into ‘risky living!’ Whether it was trying to find my way through very trying circumstances or in stepping out on a project that was on my heart, I have often found myself out on a limb. It was fine at first, especially with friend’s encouragement, but as the going got tough that support tended to evaporate. I then felt all alone, going where I hadn’t been before - into the unknown. Holding onto that branch was scary, even frightening. I looked behind, but could see there was no going back. I looked down, but that made me feel panicky, so I fixed my gaze on that apple and somehow, in a way I don’t understand I finally had my hands on that fruit - and sometimes I didn’t!

I believe God wants us out on a limb, trusting in him. We may feel unsafe out on the ‘branch,’ but remember it is connected to the solid dependable tree of life. We may even fall, but we ‘fall up’ into His arms and in our journey we will have moved on, ready for the next time. He will never ever let us down.

Let’s go for that golden apple.

“Do not be afraid, for I am with you;” New International Version