Sunday, 21 January 2018

1,2,3, Wheeee!

It’s January, the start of a new year. People like to bring some appropriate words to this season. Perhaps remind you of the King’s Christmas Broadcast of 1939, where he famously quoted that passage by Minnie Louise Hastings “I said to the man who stood at the gate of the year ‘give me a light’... But he told me ‘put your hand in the hand of God’ etc..” But whilst that was an apposite and well chosen piece as our nation stood trembling on the brink of WW2, it didn’t feel quite what I want to say now. 
One of my delights over Christmas was time with all my family. We enjoyed a whole week with our darling Rosie, and on New Year’s Day, we all drove up to the Norfolk coast and walked along the beach. We took lots of photos!

For part of the walk, Liz and Jon played the game which our family call “1,2,3,wheee!” You know it I’m sure. The child walks along between her parents, holding hands, and then they count and start to run, lift her up and swing her in the air, then let her down again, and the walk continues. Rosie adores this activity.It struck me that if I am honest about the year ahead of me, I don’t really think my journey will be like that of Miss Haskins, tentatively stepping forward into the darkness, hanging on bravely. It will be more like Rosie's walk on the sand at Holkham – sometimes walking, sometimes running, sometimes my feet will leave the ground, but always with my loving Father beside me.
I watched Rosie, she was happy, and confident, then anxious, screaming with excitement, exhilarated... Overcome with joy, giggling with happiness. But above all, confident and secure in the knowledge that Mum and Dad would keep her safe.

If you visit Spurgeons College, where Bob trained, you will see, above the main staircase, a lovely stained glass window bearing the college’s Latin motto “Teneo et Teneor” – I both hold and am held. 
Like Rosie, we can be sure that as we enter this new year, with its ups and downs, uneventful days, or scary nights, joyful times, unexpected blessings or disappointments, and those moments of breathless excitement when our feet don’t touch the ground... Whatever 2018 brings, we can be confident that just as we hold the hand of our Loving Father, so He has us firmly in his grasp. And Scripture promises that none shall pluck us from His Hand. 
So let’s move on, confident that He is beside us, let us be faithful and fearless. As Rosie says, 1,2,3... Wheeee ! 


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