Saturday, 27 March 2010

Leaving Home

It's been quite the week. Now it's nearly over. As week turns to week, there's nothing actually, physically starting over, except the names of the days. Still, it helps to think of each start of seven as a chance to begin, differently, better. Not starting over with things, instead applying whatever hard things we've been through to the new seven.

I'm leaving town for now. I'll finish with a few lines from a song that's playing, by the Avett Brothers.

"I can go on with my insecure nature, I can keep living off sympathy; I can tell all the people that all of the success is a direct reflection on me. But, watching You, makes me think that that is wrong. What is important? What's really important? Am I not to know by my name? Will I ever know silence without mental violence will the ringing at night go away? It's up to you, my father, call on me."

There's a lot to think about in the lyrics, and I may not agree with everything in the song...but there's a poignant truth to what I've quoted. I like it. A lot.

Friday, 26 March 2010

On a cloudy evening

It's easy to get confused between letting God handle things outside our control, and seizing the moment, the second, the hour, the day, or what have you. It's easy to make excuses one way or another. It's all too easy to make a statement, and when faced with any new revelation, let that go in favour of the more appealing prospect, however vigorous an effort must be made to procure it.

While I have in mind a specific emotion and situation, I do not think there is a person alive who has not been faced with this quandary, whether they made struggle in it or not. How can we know when God is giving us an opportunity to stand with what we feel He has led us to, or opening a door for us to act despite how we may have felt?

A puzzlement, and more. A test, of our trust in Him. The hardest part of this test, however, is that God gives us no direct indication whether we are being tested one way or the other. Do we let go and free-fall, hoping he will catch us before we are struck on the rocks? Do we try to catch ourselves, expecting him to aid our human efforts? It's too confusing for me to know the answer to.

But let me say this. However we may feel the need to take things in our own hands, however much we delude ourselves into thinking it's up to us now, self-delusion will never result in loosening His grip on our lives and future. God will not be thwarted.

Thursday, 25 March 2010


In life, I am convinced this is both the hardest and most important lesson to learn. It has nothing to do with not fighting for something "greater" and "different" from what you have, and it's so much bigger than being happy wherever you are. No man, on our earth, can master it, for it is a lesson that must be learned every day of our lives. Being content doesn't hinder or change our aspirations; on the contrary, it allows us to pursue what we want in a better, more prioritised way.

Contentment means, in the end, that God is put first, because once we stop wanting our own agenda and are ready to accept God's, then we are happy in the world he put us, and more importantly, under the circumstances he has set for us. Balance your own desire to be more, for whatever good reason you may have, with the truth that God has you where you are for a reason: maybe it's to learn something, maybe it's to teach you as simple a thing as patience, before you can continue on your journey. More, it's not so much spending all your time wondering, "What lesson can I possibly be meant to learn and how can I learn it so this will be over?" Rather, ask what you love best, and root out the selfishness found in your own being.


Wednesday, 24 March 2010

Of All

Of all that i've ever felt
love was the feeling most sure
and of all that i've ever had
you were the one most dear

Of the flowers in the forest
you've always been the prettiest
and no jewel in any crown
nor king on any throne
has anything on you—my very own.

Of all that's meant to be
you were the best to me
and in your eyes I saw
everything worth fighting for—
you're all there is, you see

Of all in life worth doing
there's nowhere i'd be going
happy without you

Of all the dreams I'm having
in them you're appearing
looking like a queen
and when you smile i shiver
it's love that makes me quiver
but it seems we're out of time

Of all the things I thought
this was the last that I'd expected
but it happened nonetheless
and now it's gone and fled

Of all the birds, you flew the highest
i did my best to try to catch you
but you'd just gone too far
and so I sat and watched you fly away.

Of all the clouds that drifted by
I see your face in every one
and in all the memories that die
you're there too, as if we'd just begun

Of all the hopes I shouldn't have
i let myself indulge in one
and maybe someday I'll regret it,
but even so I'm not done.

Of all the living dreams on high
i never failed to aspire
to catch you like a butterfly
and watch you flutter till forever.

Of all the verses that I've wrote,
this will be the last of note
i've run out of rhymes, you see,
but the rest of me, there's still plenty.

And that, ladies and gentlemen, is a poem of the highest degree, written in its earliest form in 1427, and altered in 1565.

Well Done, Miss Skirrow

This is a new blog I've begun, and sent the old far away. For a number of reasons, I'm making a new start at this, in an effort to turn it into what it was supposed to be to begin with: a draw for readers of my work, as author J. William English, by suggestion of my publisher. Not that I think many would be interested in seeking me out, but just in case, well, I'm here.

There's a fresher, lighter feel to this blog, and so I've given it a lighter, fresher name; still a title of one of my books (as yet unfinished), but this one a book suitable for Spring, the season our world has just begun.

Starting over, as the world does each year, we see new growth, new flowers in bloom. In fact, I spied on my walk today, though smelt before I saw, I must say, white and purple tree blossoms, heralding the green that is to come. How do I feel about Spring? I think that symbolically it is a way of saying, "Have another go," whatever may have happened the past year, through the dry summers and long winters of life.

So cheers, and have another go, my friends; you, and I, and our whole world, as the spring season sets in whether we yearn for it or not. Well Done, Miss Skirrow is a story of finding love in quite unlikely places, and so it is my hope for you, that you will find love, in the most unlikely of places, in the most unlikely of ways. There can indeed, my friends, be no pleasanter surprise than that of love.


No Future, No God? or No God, No Future?

There might not be a phrase in existence, but if not, there ought to be, and it goes like this: Without God, there is no future. This holds true for each and every one of us. Unless we have God, we have no future here on earth worth remembering, and certainly no future in the life beyond. Sadly, most of us find ourselves doing the opposite. Without Future, there is no God. We decide that if we can't have what we want, then we won't let God stay in our lives.

The irony, I think, with this sort of belief is that whether we really think God exists or no, our idea is that somehow we'll be spiting Him by rejecting him. Does God need us? No. He wants us, and loves us, and wants our devotion, but not because he needs it in any way. We, on the other hand, are very much in need of him.

There is something to be said in having a future torn away and knowing that God is still God, and that with Him, we still have a future, even though it might not look like we imagined it would. I don't think that there is any further moral or principle to this situation; but I would say that in time of our greatest need and weakness, we find that God is still there and cling ever closer to him.