Dear Friends

As parents, Charlotte and I always encouraged our children to explore hobbies that they felt drawn to and enjoyed. One activity that both our children loved to do  was dancing which started at the age of three. As they both progressed, dancing soon developed into more than just learning a new skill, it became a big part of their lives. What it instilled into them both was self-discipline, team work, purpose and goals. There were many times when the pressure was on when exams were looming or dance show rehearsals required their attendance. It was their commitment and perseverance that meant that they exceeded in all that they set out to do. For us, as parents it gave us great pleasure to see the joy that they gained from their experiences.

When we put our minds to exploring those areas of life that take us outside our comfort zone, the skies the limit, even when we think we are not capable. Being a keen viewer of Strictly Come Dancing and Dancing On Ice, it is good to see the celebrities, some with little or no experience, progress week on week. However, with any advancement to further one’s skill to the next level, time has to be given to practice, practice, practice!

In this year’s Dancing on Ice, one particular celebrity that has demonstrated and overcome their disability is the Paralympian and Gold Medalist Libby Clegg. As a sprinter who suffers with a degenerating eye condition, she requires a tethered sighted runner to guide her during her given event. There has to be extreme trust in the person guiding to ensure that she remains safe and on track. Having to learn a new skill on the ice and at times act independently to her partner, has meant a real leap of faith. Her pro partner and her have had to develop a coded methodology that enables them to communicate with each other during the routine. It demonstrates an aptitude that again requires trust in the person guiding and keeping her from danger. It is remarkable to watch her; a real determination to succeed in her goal to learn to ice skate. A skill which is difficult enough for a fully sighted person!

For those of us who follow Jesus and put our faith in him, this may strike a familiar chord. Paul’s words speak a lot of ones calling as believers to focus on the goal on walking through life that honours God and reveals God to others. Paul was no stranger to dangerous journeys, said; ““However, I consider my life worth nothing to me; my only aim is to finish the race and complete the task the Lord Jesus has given me—the task of testifying to the good news of God’s grace” Acts 20:24. As we walk in relationship with Jesus, we need to be in tune and recognise what we know about our purpose and goal for our journey and press on to the day we’ll come face to face with our Saviour and Lord.

To quote C.S Lewis; “You are never too old to set another goal or to dream a new dream.”   

Shalom

Martin