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Tuesday, 30 September 2014

Life and Laughter

When I hear the chatter of the swallows giving each other last instructions before commencing their marathon migration, I smile. When I hear the cuckoo in spring, my heart is filled with joy. When I see the woodpecker knocking his beak on the larch tree in search of breakfast...when I hear the chaffinch chattering...when I hear the cows moo or the donkeys bray or see the horses canter through the fields, my heart is filled with joy.

When I hear the cries of my newborn granddaughter, or hear her suckling contentedly, I am overwhelmed with joy, love and peace.

Life is affirming. Life is wonderful. Life is such a gift. Such a gift. 

The news this morning carried a disturbing report about the 52% decline in numbers of animals throughout the world over the last 40 years. It is more than disturbing. It’s horrifying. The Lord has given us a world teeming with a diverse variety of life, and we have got to get hold of how to manage this better before it is teeming with nothing more than billions of our own species. 

The diabolical darkness shrouding the Middle East right now is snuffing out life. There must be very little laughter and joy under the cover of such brutality and terror. The reports of the wave of young western muslim girls being beguiled into joining in make my heart sink.

There is much in the news to shadow the joy of life, to threaten to extinguish any laughter we might once have enjoyed. Now is a time perhaps unprecedented in world history when the good news of Jesus needs to be proclaimed louder than ever and lived out in brave, uncompromising, joyful lives. 

Jesus is Lord over all the earth, King of creation, Lord of life and love, Prince of peace. He is the light of the world, and the darkness has not overcome it.

The darkness has not overcome it. Silence will not prevail in the end. It will be the exuberance and joyful chatter of love and life which triumph. And today Jesus triumphs again in me, in my life, in my heart, in my expectations.

Life is a gift. Such a gift. Unwrap it and enjoy it. And give thanks.

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