Friday 7 June 2019

What I long to be

What I Long to Be.

We all go through some very difficult times one way or another. In one such time when I was giving much thought to my life and that famous word my," legacy." I wrote these words.

What I Long to Be.

I long to live as gently as I can,
Soft and worthy as a man
To face life daily good or bad,
To remember, for what it is I stand.
When failure comes as oft it does,
To take it by the hand.
To learn from moments such as these.
A better man to better, please.
To never give to shame or sin.
That I may be at peace within.
To stand for what I know is right.
And never fear to face that fight.
To leave some simple things behind.
That those that follow, have me in their mind.
To be at one as each day comes.
With earth and water, wind and fire
 the gentle man is my desire.
That some may look, consider me kind.
Give thanks for what I leave behind.

Legacy is one of those words that have taken so many meanings. How we will be remembered is what in the end really does matter and is worthy of some thought. 

Saturday 11 May 2019

Two Friends


There is a very ancient Hindu tale about two brothers. 

Once upon a time, there lived two boys, Madhav and Keshav, in a village. They both came from poor backgrounds and attended school together. Madhav used to chant the Name of The Lord regularly, and was intelligent, helpful and always happy. Keshav was a lazy and unhappy boy, and jealous of Madhav. He would be irritated with Madhav and wished for his downfall.
One day, Madhav was returning from school when he noticed a young boy lying wounded and unconscious in the middle of the road. He at once went to help and carried the boy home. Once home, he cleaned and bandaged his wounds. He then bought some new clothes by borrowing money from his mother and changed the torn ones with the new.
After some time, the boy regained his senses and learned about the timely help from Madhav. He told Madhav about the accident he had had when his horse went wild and threw him off. After he had eaten a good meal cooked by Madhav’s mother, he thanked them and left for home.
The boy was actually a prince. Upon returning to the palace, he described the incident to his father, the king. The next day, the king called Madhav to his palace and thanked him for the help. He showered him with many precious gifts, including fine clothes, money and a beautiful house to live in.
When Keshav heard of this, he was so jealous that he was unable to sleep that night. “I must please the king more than Madhav has done,” was the only thought he had! He wanted to have more and even better gifts than Madhav. He thought that if the king can be pleased with the simple clothes and food that Madhav had given the prince, then a royal robe and fine food would please the king even more.
The next day, Keshav pleaded for a large sum of money from his father. With all the money he now had, Keshav went straight to the market and purchased an expensive robe and fine food for the prince. Then, he went to the king’s palace and offered his gifts to the prince.
The king could not understand why a village boy had presented the gifts to his son, so he asked his wise minister to inquire and advise him on a suitable gift to be given in return. The wise minister had a chat with Keshav and found out that jealousy had prompted Keshav to present the gifts to the prince. He then went to the king and said, “My Lord, you gave expensive gifts to Madhav, the village boy, for the ordinary clothes and food he gave to the prince. So now you may give this boy some ordinary clothes and food in return for his expensive gifts.”
When Keshav saw his ordinary gifts, he was heartbroken and returned home sad and angry. When he asked his father why the king had treated him so unfairly, the father explained that the king had rewarded Madhav for his attitude of selflessness and not because of the things that Madhav had given the prince.
it is wise to see what you have and to hold on to it as precious never measure it against what another has. 
Have a good day.

Tuesday 7 May 2019

Out of the mouths of babes.

Oh, Deer.

My determination to do two things before I present myself at the hospital for my ankle operation was to get all of the article's thoughts and meditations written, for my latest book.  I am also aware that I will not be able to hit any golf balls for a few weeks after my operation, so have been trying to play a few extra rounds prior to my date.

Writing this book has taken me back in so many ways to my days as a minister. The subtitle of the book is, "Reflections from a Ministry," so it would do just that. 

This has not always been as simple as it sounds. It has been a bit of an emotional rollercoaster. Memories keep flooding back into my mind and I have had to be careful not to allow them to cloud what it is I am actually working on.

I could not resist sharing these thoughts with you, some I think may have crept in before but they are worthy of a smile or two.

Some of the things children have said over the years in response to questions asked of them.

The first book of the Bible is Guinessis, in which Adam and Eve were created from an apple tree.

Noah had a wife, her name was Joan of Ark.

Lot also had a wife who could not have been much fun because she was a pillar of salt.

Samson was a mighty warrior who killed the Philistines with the axe of the Apostles.

Unleavened bread is very falt because it is made without ingredients.

Moses brought down the ten commandments from the mountain called Mount Cyanide.

Joshua let the Hebrew in the battle of Geritol.

Jesus was born because Mary had an immaculate contraption.

The 7th commandment is 'Thou shalt not admit adultery.'  

David fought the Finkelsteins, a race of people who lived in Biblical times.

Solomon has 300 wives and 700 porcupines.

The people who followed Jesus were called the 13 decibels.

The Epistles were the wives of the Apostles.

Paul preached holy acrimony, which is another name for marriage.

A Godly person should have only one wife. This is called monotony.

Have a great day.

Monday 29 April 2019

Vocabulary lesson.

Yesterday I played golf with my son. I am sure you know what golf is? It is a game that certainly helps you learn about a great many emotions and even some new words.

The last time I played  I came home feeling that I had played fairly well. That day I had played alone and that makes a great world of a difference. The odd bad shot can very easily be forgotten because nobody else saw it. When playing with my son every little misshit becomes something else. Now when your son turns up with a friend how very different the game becomes. Now it becomes competitive and every stroke is precious and has to be played well.

When you manage to hit a birdie, one stroke less than it is meant to take to play the hole you feel the excitement. When you take one or two more than ought to have been taken you experience frustration. So many emotions in one day.

A father was trying to explain this to his son and the son listened intently. He then asked his father, "What is the difference between irritation, aggravation and frustration?"

The father thinks hard but cannot find the correct explanation. He gets out his phone and puts it on speakerphone so that his sone can hear the conversation.

He dials a number and when it is answered he asks if Alf is there.

The person on the other end says that there is no Alf there and hangs up. The father tells his son, "Now that is an irritation."

He then dials the same number, again and again, asks for Alf. 

This time the person on the other end angrily responds. "There is no Alf here. If you call again asking for him I am going to report you to the police."

That says the father is, aggravation.

The son looks at him and tells his father he sees the difference but asks him, "What about frustration?"

The father again dials the same number. When it is answered he says, "Hello this is Alf. Have you had any calls for me?'

I will not share the response but I think you will understand.

If no! I advise you to take up the game of golf.

Have a great day.

Sunday 28 April 2019

Blast from the past.

One way or another in the past few weeks I have been thinking back to my time as a minister and the churches in which I was. I have also looked back at how it all began. No doubt the working on the book I worked on while I was a minister has played its part.

Away back to my first visit to church to meet a group of people who later formed a hymn writing and singing group called Group 96. Psalm 96 begins with the words, "Sing a new song to the lord."

It has been a bit of an emotional time and I am full of mixed feeling as I begin to reach the end of the work.

I suppose because of this I have found myself in many conversations with people about how it is doing.  Strangely enough at the coffee morning yesterday where I was helping out selling plants somebody I would never have considered interested in my writing was saying that he was thoroughly enjoying my second book. 

I spoke to somebody from my second church and there just might be a return visit in the offing, this will be another emotional moment. 

I was asked by another person if as a minister I had done any Christenings? Of course, my answer was no, but I had done hundreds of baptisms. A little discussion between what was the difference took place. Christenings happened in the Roman Catholic Church and baptisms in the Church of Scotland. That being the difference many still spoke only of Christenings. maybe this is because that is what all the card makers called it. 

This reminded me of the tale of Jack.

Each Friday, after work, weather permitting jack had a barbeque. He liked nothing more than cooking a venison steak on the grill and sitting in the sun with it and a glass of beer.  All of jacks neighbours were Roman Catholic and in those days they did not eat meat on a Friday so the smell began to get to them. They finally could take it no longer and spoke to their Priest. 

The priest eventually persuaded Jack to become a Roman Catholic. After some classes, Jack was Christened in the church.

The priest sprinkled him with holy water and said, "You were born a Baptist and raised a Baptist, now you are a Roman Catholic.' The neighbours were delighted until the next Friday night came along. 

The aroma of cooking Venison could be smelled all over the place. The priest was called and came in haste. 

As the priest rounded the building and into Jacks back garden there was jack clutching his rosary beads. The priest ready to give him a ticking off watched and listened. 

Jack had in his hand a small bottle of Holy Water, which he was carefully sprinkling over the grilling meat and chanting,  "You were born a deer, you were raised a deer, but now you are a catfish."

it was permissible to eat fish on a Friday.

Have a great day.


Friday 26 April 2019

The Kings Seeds.

I have spent some time in the past week and more in one way or another thinking about plants. Maybe it is because last Friday and tomorrow have been the planting up of the summer seedlings. Or maybe it is because I have had all the bushes removed from the back garden. They were becoming almost unmanageable, and the fence behind was falling apart. So after today, I will have a new fence but hardly any plants in my back garden.

So one way or another my thoughts have turned to plants.

As I walked yesterday I was wondering about what I might do short and long term with my back garden? Short term is one thing but at my age what is long term?

I remembered the tale of the King who was growing old and wondered how to select his successor for training. He announced a competition. Every boy was to collect and seed from the palace and the boy who grew the best plant would succeed.

They all collected their seeds and went home. Each boy prepared his pot and planted his seed and began watering. 

Soon there was much talk about leaves and shoots appearing and who was managing to grow the biggest plant.

Haun had taken great care of his seed and how he had planted it. But nothing was growing.

On the day when all the pots were to be brought to the palace, his was still empty.  His mother told him to take his pot as it was and show it to the king.

On the way to the palace, he saw so many beautiful plants and he had nothing. he wondered why he was going at all.

As they all stood before the king he wandered among them until he came to Haun. Here is the winner he declared.

They all looked amazed. The King then said that to be a king you had to be honest and upright. All of the seeds that had been given out had been heated in an oven and so none of them could have grown. All the others had obviously planted other seeds while Haun had been honest about his.

Have a marvellous day. Honesty is not always easy but it is always best.

Thursday 25 April 2019

Coffee and chips.

I met a man on the golf course yesterday on three different occasions.  Each time we passed he stopped and spoke. The first time he complained about the wind and how he was not managing to hit his ball as far as he normally would.

The second time we met he complained about how cold it was. He just could not get heat in his hands at all and so was not playing a good round.

The thirds time we met he complained about how dry and hard the ground was after all the dry weather we have had. It is almost impossible to predict the roll of the ball.

At this point, I bit my tongue because I almost said why do you not just give up a go and sit in the clubhouse and have a nice warming bowl of chips and a warm cup of coffee. I am sure he would not have appreciated my comments at all. Probably the coffee would be too bitter.

There was once a man lived in a village. Everybody in the village avoided him because all he ever did was complain about how bad everything was.

Then all of a sudden the whispering around the village changed. People began to say that something had happened he was telling funny stories and making people laugh.

Somebody decided to go and speak with him and ask why the change?  He did just that.

The man said, "I have been chasing happiness for almost eighty years and never found it. The other week there I decided to stop looking and just take life as it comes. Would you believe I have never been happier in my life."

There are some people who it seems are born to be complainers and those who take life as it is and are happier for it.

How good it was to meet a friend at the car park who said, "Was that wind when it was at our back not marvellous how far the ball travelled. The dry ground also took the ball further. Now I am going to get a warm cup of coffee and I might even get a bowl of chips."

Have a marvellous day.