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Tuesday, 26 August 2014

Past times.

We recently went along to the annual Morval Vintage Rally and saw the two cars displayed. they immediately brought many memories flooding into our minds. The top car is an Austin A30 which was my first car. It was a 1953 model for which I paid the grand sum of five pounds. It needed the engine to be re-furbished and so after removing it and stripping it down we set about a re-bore of the block, new piston rings and shell bearings along with new valves etc. All of this achieved before my 17th birthday upon which I learned to drive in this little 800cc car. It was a great experience but it caused me to remember the inspiration behind the project. My dad wanted me to know all about cars and this was a good grounding. as I looked at this little car my mind was filled with so many things, happiness and sadness mixed together, it reminded me of dad who I have missed so much for the last 38 years.

The second car is a mark 2 Singer Vogue, just like the one that I inherited from my father when he died in 1976.The colour is the same and as I looked at it I remember all of the great times we had with that car, it was in mint condition and an absolute beauty. but again I was plagued by mixed emotions, I have such great memories of him who made my ownership and understanding of these great cars possible. the Singer was something of a sacrifice in that it became mine because he died. 

There were many other blasts from the past in the rally, old steam engines which of course I do not remember but there were also road rollers which I do remember, Ford Zodiacs, Green Goddesses, mini's, Triumph heralds and e-type Jags etc, etc. It was a great day out and we enjoyed it with the family. It was good to see Riley with a Riley car, Nathaniel on the slide and Olivia as always enjoying her food. It was equally good to see Jo & Jim together along with Marie but of course Elaine and Niklas were missing. We had a precious day that was made even better by Donna (my niece) John and Issy being there. 

But the memories would not go away but I also could see that because my father lived then there is a whole family of great individuals that are his legacy and I am proud of them all. One day I will "pop off" myself and will leave behind a legacy for the future. I can only pray that for whatever reason my input might be seen to be helpful as my father's certainly is.

Of course human fathers are simply an echo of our Heavenly Father who has given so much more than we can ever imagine. All that we have and are and ever will be is due to His grace and favour! I certainly praise Him and thank Him for that. Do you????

Friday, 22 August 2014

Red Arrows air show.

I just happened to hear the other day that the Red Arrows were about to pay an annual visit to Fowey (pronounced Foy) on Thursday evening. The local farmers of Polruan open their fields to visitors for a small donation to the charity box. From this superb vantage point it is possible to view the most incredible display by what I unashamedly claim are the very best pilots in the world.

Nine red jet planes come into view and from that moment on delight the crowds of onlookers with a display that truly amazes all that are there.

It seemed that every vantage point was filled with adoring fans of this most amazing team. The incredibly accurate and perfectly timed display left us all thrilled and full of pride that our lads are capable of such skillful flying. One friend even said that it was one of the most emotional experience that she had ever experienced. But it was only a few aeroplanes! 

Or was it??????

This was a display of working at the limit of his ability and thrilling an audience that is in need of great encouragement in days when everything else seems to be so sterile. I am sure that if the concept of a display team was suggested today that there would be so many different objections for some perfectly valid reasons but also for totally trite reasons also that there would never be a Red Arrows team today.

We are so grateful to our forefathers who started this wonderful Great British institution and long may it continue!

Well done the RAF I am proud of you!

Wednesday, 13 August 2014

Do I love Looe?

I have a problem when my Christian friends tell me that I must love Looe because I am really not too sure what they mean by that! There is much about the town that is very pleasant but do I love it?

There is much about the hustle and bustle of people but is that something that i should love?

There are also many things about Looe that are quite unlovely, there is drunkeness and violence on the street especially on Friday and Saturday nights. That is ugly and quite unlovely. 

Seagulls!!! Do I need to say more when the thieving and violent birds are swooping ripping food out of our children's hands?

There are so many things that enter into the equation and so it is worth considering some of the things that are good about Looe . It is said that every picture tells a story and so here are some Looe snaps that try to put into perspective what my thoughts are:

Reflections in the lifeboat station window. A time to reflect!

New Years Eve fireworks are a good reminder that we need not only to reflect but to celebrate and look forward.

The warning light on the Banjo Pier reminds me that a right direction is needed however old we might be. The seagull is simply a reminder that the enemy is always in attendance!

Not the prettiest table or the best china cup but the coffee within is superb from the best coffee shop in town! Larssons if you want to know. We all need something that wets our appetite.

Grotty steps can never take the beauty out of the flowers however hard they try. A reminder that we all live in a fallen world that can never take the beauty of the Saviour from us.

The Banjo pier, a dangerous walk if you do not watch where you are going. One step off the path and disaster, how this speaks of life!

Lovely sunshine, coffee (French) feet up and a relaxing time taking in the beauty of the view. Who said life is a drag?

People enjoying themselves and worshipping the sun, pity that it is not the Son!

Carnival time and the band is out gladdening the hearts of the people. The gospel clarion call needs to be made loud and clear.

"The heavens declare the glory of God" very loudly. Psalm 19:1

The stage is set for man to display his ability, all need to consider the works of God.

Each to his/her own dwelling place which reminds me of the place in eternity being made just for me>

The bridge that was built to unite two divided towns reminding me of the need of the gospel which unites man to God.

A calm and peaceful setting, peace with God is accomplished for us in Jesus Christ.

Reflect on these things.

There is much to love about Looe but there are also the things that are difficult: The seagulls, the brawling drunkeness, the noise but that is simply due to people having fun. In have decided that Looe brings fun to many people, it is the place of holidays and memories but most of all it is home to us and as such I am more than happy to belong. 

Do I love it?

I suppose I probably do but I need something to fulfill me and then I will not only live here but will truly belong. Looe needs a gospel presence it is the gospel that will make the difference but how can that happen?

They need a preacher but who is willing to go?

Tuesday, 5 August 2014

The Two Shall Become One.

You may be wondering what the title has to do with this particular bridge. The bridge was built in 1853 with much opposition. The residents on both sides of the water did not want a bridge simply because the river separated to groups of people who hated each other. At that time there was Looe which was situated on the East bank of the river and Port Bigham on the West. Looe was the larger but poorer community but had the sunshine whereas Port Bigham was more wealthy but was largely in the shade.

It may be of interest to you to discover that I learned this vital information at the regular Male Voice Choir concert in the Lifeboat Station. Tonight's guest choir was the Polperro Fishermen's Choir who were excellent and well worth going to hear. 

Local choirs are an excellent way of learning something of the history of the locality and tonight's concert was in no way an exception. As the MC was telling of the meaning and reason for one particular song he was telling of the hatred that there was between the Eastern and Western communities. This caused my mind to wander to issues in the world with the problems in Israel and Palestine etc.  There is clear hatred from one side to the other but can there be a uniting factor???

For Looe that is where the bridge came in!

The two communities did not want it but it was exactly what they needed. The stone was brought down from the moor and the authorities in spite of violent protest built the bridge and the two communities became linked and eventually became one town.

There are still issues between East and West, the West is wealthier and the East is poorer but it does still have the sunshine. The acrimony is gone because a bridge was built. The town is now Looe East and West one people paying taxes to one authority simply because they have been joined together by a bridge. How amazing is that!!

It makes me wonder what bridge is required to bring warring factions together. 

Choirs performing at the lifeboat station are a reminder to me that the summer season has begun but there was also another reminder to me this morning as I walked along the prom. The holiday makers were starting to take up their places on the beach, deck chairs placed and the very British windbreaks corralling families into their own sacred space. 

This was only part of the reminder it was a particular group of people on the beach that caught my interest. They come to Looe faithfully for 3 weeks every year with a specific purpose.

Their purpose is to build a bridge. The bridge is the gospel and so this group of Christian volunteers give of their holiday to try to reach families with the good news that changes an important relationship.

Due to our sin we are on the wrong side of a divide with God. the bible actually tells us that we are all enemies of God and that the situation cannot be changed. We are separated from him and our sin is odious to Him and therefore there is no way that we can do anything about it. 

But just as the authorities made a bridge to unite Looe God has done all that is necessary for the gulf between us and Him to be bridged. For this to be accomplished sin had to be dealt with, God cannot turn a blind eye to it it must be punished. the appropriate punishment for sinners is eternal death. The bridge is a sacrifice made in order to pay the price, naturally there is no one good enough to do this and so God Himself  stepped in. The Lord Jesus Christ who is God the Son became a man but was without sin and so He was able to pay the price by dying in the place of all who will trust Him and turn away from sin and to trust God for salvation.

The beach team are here to declare the truth that the Lord Jesus Christ is the bridge that we need to  become united to God.