It’s good to reminisce now and again. I was just sitting here putting together the strands to various blogs and interspersed in all the writing and sorting I looked back on some of the earlier blog entries on this blog. It’s quite something reading about how I introduced my family and some social justice issues. Man, back in the day I could write. That’s not to say I’ve dropped the ball, it is to say I have hope to continue writing when I read stuff like that.
I was thinking about combining two strands of thought and making one blog, but on further consideration I thought it better to just leave it to two separate blogs so I can get on with the series on fasting on a different trend to keeping you up to date with a couple of things worth mentioning.
First it’s worth mentioning that as you read in yesterday’s blog I really began to take fasting a bit more seriously when I loved in London. During that time I had my first real spiritual mentor. Previously I was more or less left to my own devices in terms of being grounded in a relationship with God. It was Ritson Shields who took me under his wing and supported practically as well as in other ways to help me grow in my relationship with God. He helped me to get excited about some of the things of God and there’s no doubt that he helped me have a greater appreciation for exploring the things of God and taking my teaching passion seriously and wider than the denominational setting.
I say all this because today is his birthday. (OK it was today when I wrote even if it’s yesterday when I blog it!) Not quite sure how old he is, but I’m sure that’s completely irrelevant. This blog allows me to publicly declare my appreciation and love of him. There are times I wish we were physically closer as for all the benefit of modern communications, nothing beats intimate personal contact.
So on this his birthday I trust he had a good one and if you don’t have other followers of Christ that you can count on to help in your journey, please find them because they are worth their weight in gold. We were never meant to do this journey solo and ideally our local church is meant to be that expression of intimacy and grace that allows us to grow together closer to Christ and each other. I know realistically the ideal remains a challenge, but it is still possible to have close relationships in the Lord that echo Paul and Barnabas, Peter and John and other famous double-acts and group settings.
I thank God for you Ritson and trust that others will come to know the benefits of being mentored into growing in love with Christ as you have mentored me, sir.
I also thought I’d use this entry to again promote some of the other blogs to which I contribute. All year long my reading has increased a great deal and I’ve enjoyed that fact with one or two books standing out above the rest. I may have made private notes about them here and there, but I am looking to begin reviewing the books a lot more as there are so many values and other things of interest to gain from them. So where pertinent I’m putting up book reviews together, some on this blog and some on the sister blog Among Friends. Recently I finished reading the biography of Billy Joel by Bill Smith called I Go To Extremes and it gives me great pleasure to commend to you the review I’ve written on it. Look out for more reviews from time to time.
In terms of settling at home, I’m a lot closer than I was two months ago, but it’s still a longer process than I thought. Things at work are picking up slightly and I feel a bit better for that. One outlet of that will be greater activity on the web from me on the North Staffs YMCA site, so be sure to check it out as and when stuff changes. As well as all that I’m going through some challenging times personally in terms of getting focussed only on what God wants me to do. I’m sure I’ll blog on that sooner or later. Speaking of blogging later, there’ll be more on the current series of fasting very shortly. As ever thanks for your time in reading.
For His Name's Sake