Monday 29 April 2024

The Chicken Question


OK folks, we need your honest opinion on this. It is a question in three parts. Please try to answer and if possible give reasons for your answer.

You are at the supermarket. They have packets of fresh chicken pieces at half price. They also have a notice saying: THREE PACKETS PER FAMILY

FIRST SITUATION: You are with your spouse, and grown up child. You decide to take three packets each and pay for them at separate check-outs.


Remember, you have paid for all nine packets; so is it stealing?

SECOND SITUATION: The reason you bought so much chicken is because you need them to feed the homeless at the local shelter for the homeless. It is a charity with not much funds.


THIRD SITUATION: Here's another scenario. You buy the nine packets and keep three for yourself as a family, and the other six packets are for two other families you know; for example two friends with their own families.


Sunday 28 April 2024

Father Francis Sings


Friday 26 April 2024

Christian Fiction Books


The books shown here are a selection of short stories featuring Father Ignatius

HERE I AM LORD - ISBN: 9798868253072

A delightful selection of short stories featuring the amiable Father Ignatius in his daily tasks serving his congregation and following in Christ’s footsteps.

Each story contains a message to help you reflect on your Christian journey and your daily prayers. You can read the stories in chronological order or at random, each being a stand-alone vignette to treasure time and again.

​Written in the author’s inimitable style the characters come alive as real people you would like to meet and get to know in your life.

This book is an ideal gift to yourself or to a loved one. The stories and the characters remain fresh to be enjoyed many times over. Add it to your collection of other Father Ignatius books by the same author.


A series of short stories featuring the amiable Father Ignatius tending to his flock as he walks daily in Christ's footsteps. Faced with the many problems and difficulties of his congregation, the kind priest carefully dispenses practical advice with humility, compassion and love for his people. Imitating the Lord Jesus as best he can.

GOD'S SHEPHERD - ISBN-10: 1500683957 ISBN-13: 978-1500683955

Father Ignatius, the Parish priest at St Vincent Church is an amiable soul whose kind and jovial personality is well loved and appreciated by his parishioners and all those who know him. His is not a nine-to-five job where he can get home on time for his evening meal and a good evening watching TV, or playing golf. He is always “on-call” so to speak having to attend to his flock when in trouble and difficulties, or having to go to hospital at all hours of day and night when someone is gravely ill.

​This is a collection of short stories specially selected by the author as amongst his favourites. They tell of the day to day adventures of a gentle pious priest with a gift of dispensing good advice and wise lessons to a troubled world.

TAKE CARE OF MY SHEEP - ISBN 978 1727 675009

A priest’s life is not always mundane and pedestrian doing the same thing day in day out. His main responsibility is to take care of Christ’s sheep; the many people who throughout life are brought into his care as God’s servant and shepherd. There are times when unexpected events turn Father Ignatius’ day upside down and send him to unexpected activities he did not plan; all for the sake of his parishioners and all those he gets to meet in his vocation as a priest. This book is a collection of short stories in the life of a humble man trying his best to follow in his Master’s footsteps.

IN HIS SERVICE - ISBN-13: 979-8696 585475

A delightful selection of short stories featuring Father Ignatius; the main character in the books “Visions”, “The Priest and Prostitute”, “To Love a Priest”, “Don’t Let The Devil Win!” and many others by the same author.

Each story is a stand-alone vignette. In this book we see Father Ignatius dealing with numerous situations in his daily life as a priest with compassion, with love and with understanding.

Always there for his parishioners. Always following in his Master’s footsteps. Always In His Service.


Thursday 25 April 2024

Lessons on being helpful


It seems that all my attempts at being helpful backfire some way or another. But I just can't help to volunteer even when I have no cause to do so and it's better to stand aside.

In a restaurant once someone shouted "is there a medic in the house?" To impress the people I was with I jumped up and said, "Can I help?"

A waiter in the kitchen had slipped and hurt his foot. I did not know what to do. Mouth to mouth resuscitation was not an option. So I placed my hand on his forehead to take his temperature. I don't even know what the normal temperature is. I then checked his pulse by holding his wrist. Everyone around was amazed at my technique. I said, "It's important to check for vital signs!" I then said with authority, "I think you should call an ambulance!"

On another occasion in Paris someone fell in the river. You could say he was in Seine! I threw him one of those inflatable rings on sign posts nearby and it hit him hard on the head nearly knocking him unconscious. Two other people swore at me in French and jumped it to pull him out of the water. That's very rude of them. If it was not for me throwing the ring they would not know where he was drowning.

I remember one day in the park in England some people were playing football. They hit the ball so hard it came towards me. In order to impress them I placed the ball on the ground, took a run at it, and kicked it back. Unfortunately I kicked it to the left and it went in the river. They too were rude about it. In English, not in French. 

Driving on a country lane one evening I saw a car parked on the side of the road with its bonnet up. A sure sign over here that the car had broken down. I stopped to help. It was an old couple. I looked under the bonnet and did not know what to do. It was all bits of engine and wires and cables and mechanical things. Why can't car manufacturers label each bit with a name and what it is for? The old man said, "Actually, the problem is a flat tyre, we are waiting for the car rescue service to arrive!" The old lady thought I was a thief and threatened to beat me with her umbrella.  

There was a commotion in town. Someone shouting, "stop ... thief ..." and running out the store. I jumped in and stopped him to the ground. He was the security guard chasing the real thief. I was accused of being an accomplice ... of the thief, not the security guard.

I think I'll give up being helpful. The good Samaritan did not have such troubles. Imagine if as he was helping the man onto his donkey the donkey had bitten him. He would have been accused of adding bites to assault, and charged for being the actual thief rather than the helpful Samaritan.

Wednesday 24 April 2024

Laughter is in the mind


A celebrity is someone who works hard all his life to become known and then wears dark glasses to avoid being recognized.

At every party, there are two kinds of people: those who want to go home and those who don’t. The trouble is, they are usually married to each other.

I never wanted to believe that my Dad was stealing from his job as a road worker. But when I got home, all the signs were there.

Evening news is where they begin with ‘Good evening’, and then proceed to tell you why it isn’t.

Why do dogs always race to the door when the doorbell rings? It’s hardly ever for them.

After finishing our Chinese food, my husband and I cracked open our fortune cookies. Mine read, “Be quiet for a little while.” His read, “Talk while you have a chance.”

My wife told me that I twist everything she says to my advantage. I take that as a compliment.

The key to eating healthy is not eating any food that has a TV commercial.

I ate a gluten-free, lactose-free, low-carb pizza for dinner tonight. It was a raw tomato.

I can’t believe I forgot to go to the gym today. That’s 7 years in a row now.

What do you get when you cross a dyslexic, an insomniac, and an agnostic? Someone who lays awake at night wondering if there is a dog.

I once shot a lion in my pyjamas. What he was doing in my pyjamas I’ll never know.

I’m going to stand outside. So, if anyone asks, I am outstanding.

I used to run a dating service for chickens, but I was struggling to make hens meet.

What do you call it when a snowman throws a tantrum? A meltdown.

Two peanuts were walking down the street. One was a-salted.

What's black and white and goes round and round? A penguin in the washing machine.

I found a book called How to Solve 50% of Your Problems. So I bought 2.

Monday 22 April 2024

All about me revealed


There are so many programs on TV about celebrities talking about themselves, their past, who they really are, how they made it good from a sad and poor start in life. 

So I thought, before the news media approaches me for such a sensational show or movie about me; let me tell you first, my loyal readers, all about myself and my past.


Sunday 21 April 2024

Everybody Hurts


If you are hurting right now
I am praying for you.
Hold on.
You are not alone.
God is only a prayer away.

Friday 19 April 2024

And then God created experts


Did you know that the very first consultant on earth was a snake? And see how that went!

And now, we have many consultants and experts on every subject you can imagine.

There are political and economic experts telling you why everything is so expensive and why life is so difficult.

You have health experts telling you why this and that is affecting your this and that and there is no real cure for it anyway.

Environmental experts are blooming everywhere telling us that we are harming the planet by our propensity to break wind and we should eat less meat but more beans and pulses instead to save the planet.

All kinds and manner of experts are everywhere. Although I'm curious to find out who appointed them as experts and where they got their expertise from.

These days there are marital and relationships experts as well as parenting experts. Did our parents or grand-parents need any of these considering the hardships and troubles they went through in the past one hundred years?

We now also have dog training experts. Hygiene and cleaning experts. Etiquette experts, de-cluttering experts and so on and so forth. How did past generations survive without them? Or without lifestyle experts telling them how to be fashionable and colour-coordinate their furniture with the wall paper?

According to a weather expert if a butterfly somewhere far away flutters its wings then the air turbulence it creates will move a little more air, and that little air will in turn move more air, and more and more that eventually, several weeks later, a hurricane will develop somewhere else far away. 

Armed with this information I now kill every butterfly in sight. Imagine how many hurricanes and tsunamis I have prevented single-handedly.

Now with the Internet, you can easily find an expert to advise you on everything and anything. If you have a pimple on your nose just Google it and an expert on the subject will tell you all about it; and how to share on social media and be famous in the process. 

I've discovered all sorts of experts on social media informing me on so many things I did not know about or even knew existed. Like for instance how to make your own hair restorer lotion using chicken poo. I am all cock-a-hoop about it and I'm now a sex symbol for women with no sense of smell.

Another on-line expert suggested a mixture of raw eggs and flour to remove unwanted hair. I rubbed it on my beard and now I have birds feeding there.

I read an article recently written by an expert on how to weld metal plates together to make your own ship. It was quite riveting I tell you.

A fashion expert on TV was deriding the sartorial habit of wearing trousers right up to one's nipples and holding them there with a belt and braces. I always thought it made me look handsome!

A friend of mine, a medic, has specialised and is now a nostril expert. The left one to be precise. Ask him anything about the left nostril and he's your man! Ask about the right nostril and he's totally useless.

Are you an expert in any field or subject? Do you know someone who is? Tell us more here.

The world needs experts.

Thursday 18 April 2024

Faith is not enough



 In Hebrews Chapter 11 we read: To have faith is to be sure of the things we hope for, to be certain of the things we cannot see.

But what does that really mean? What is it like to have faith, and not only to believe in a living God, Creator of all and everything, but also to be certain in that belief? Without any proof, or evidence whatsoever.

It’s as if to have faith is to believe when your common sense tells you not to.

Often Jesus said to people He has healed: Your faith has healed you. Your faith has saved you.

He taught that if we had faith as small as a mustard seed we could perform miracles.

We read in Mark 9:24 that when a father asked Jesus to heal his son, he said: I believe, Lord; help my unbelief. Jesus took pity on him and realised that the man had some faith, perhaps not enough, but at least he had some; so Jesus healed the man’s son.

This leads us to ask: Is faith enough?

We may have faith, to varying degrees, depending on who we are. But is this enough?

After all, even the devil has faith. He believes in God all-right. He even tried to tempt Jesus often enough. This proves that he has faith, and believes in God. Perhaps more than we do.

So, if faith is not enough; what is missing in our relationship with God?


Let us consider trust for a moment. A little child does not question whether his parents care for him or not. It is intrinsically part of his nature to take it for granted that his parents love him and will take care of him. When he asks them for bread they will not give him a stone, and when he asks for fish they will not give him a serpent.

The child trusts his parents and will continue to do so as he grows up; until one day someone may betray that trust and then he’ll become more wary of those around him.

So how about us? Is our faith in God matched with an unshakeable trust that He cares for us, and no matter what happens, no matter how bad things are in our lives, He is there, beside us, all the time caring for us and ready to see us through whatever crisis we face.

Can you imagine the amount of self-control and concentration of thought we should have to believe, really believe, that not matter what happens, we trust that God loves us and cares for us enough to protect us from all evil?

Such level of trust may well be beyond what many of us can achieve; but it should not stop us from trying. Through gritted teeth even. We should pray, over and again, that we trust God that He will see us through this dark period in our lives.

Faith, no matter how great or small, as much as half a mustard seed even, may not be enough. It needs to be accompanied by an unfailing trust that our loving God will never ever let us down.

It is no point having faith in a Master who walks on water if we do not trust Him enough to follow Him.

Wednesday 17 April 2024



Dear Readers,

I would like to thank Manny, a frequent visitor to this Blog and an Internet friend just like you, for this wonderful article about Father Francis Maple and the song Imagine. Click HERE.

Tuesday 16 April 2024

Close encounter of the double kind

It was by far the most frightening experience of my life. I stayed overnight at an old stately home which is reputed to be haunted. I was all alone in the house.

That's when I heard someone coming in from the kitchen. Probably a burglar. I hid behind the thick curtains. I was frightened and must have cried a little because I could feel the tears trickling down my leg.

The door opened. It was the butler. 

Then from the window at the far end I saw a flash of lightening, then a bright light that would not go away. The butler remained in the room.

Moments later the door leading to the kitchen opened slowly with a creaking sound. Long bony fingers appeared on the side of the door. Then a long bony face with really big eyes. 

A diminutive humanoid type creature came in slowly. It was totally skeletal made of bones and covered in a pale grey skin. It looked like an alien from outer-space who'd just landed in the garden outside.

The alien talked. He said to the butler, "I feel a spiritual presence here. Is this house haunted?"

The butler replied, "In all the time I have worked here I have not seen a ghost."

"How long have you worked here?" asked the extra terrestrial.

 "About 400 years," replied the butler.

I started crying again.

"I notice you've only got one moon. We have seven on our planet," said the ET, "Now take me to your leader?"

"Which one?" asked the butler, "I don't have a leader. I just walk through walls and solid objects to frighten people."

"That's a neat trick," said ET, "but why the eye-patch?"

"One day I went through a key hole and someone put a key in at the same time. On another occasion I slid under a door and the maid sucked me into her vacuum cleaner while she was working. So now, it's only walking through walls for me," lamented the butler.

"We're not as versatile," said the ET fellow, "but we have tricks too. Because we move through space and time at quantum speed we can tell your future here on earth before earthlings experience it. Like travelling faster than the speed of light."

"That's clever," said the butler, "you can tell the future. Who will win the dog race tomorrow at 2:00pm?"  

"A greyhound!" affirmed ET.

"Which one?" asked the butler. 

I quickly memorised the name of the dog ET said. It was Cucumber.

The next day I rushed to the betting shop and there was a dog of that name at the 2:00pm race.

I bet £500 on Cucumber to win. It came last.

FOOTNOTE: Why are ghosts always in old haunted houses and ancient castles? Why aren't there ghosts at the supermarket, or your favourite fast-food outlet, or in a public toilet in the mall?  

Do ghosts always speak in English? Or can they speak other languages? If so, would you be scared of a ghost speaking a foreign language? 

What would you do if you were at home alone and you heard the toilet flush? I'd probably wet myself.

And what would you do if a ghost told you for certain that tomorrow you will die? I'd probably stop re-cycling. Recycling is so tedious, don't you think?

Anyway, some thoughts for you to ponder about, especially when you're at home alone. 

BOOOH !!! (I bet that made you jump).

Monday 15 April 2024

Bitten by bugs


Like many people, I am not immune from worries, concerns, doubts and some fears as to what may happen next.

The world is full of conflict at present. Global conflict amongst many peoples, conflict closer to home in one's own country, town or city, or even in one's family.

How many people have had a disagreement or serious falling out with another member of the family and as a result both vowed not to speak or see each other again. In doing so, not only have they built a great chasm between them preventing forgiveness and reconciliation, but they have also denied a future generation, their own children, from growing up knowing their cousins, uncles, aunts and other members of their families.

By taking entrenched positions that they are right, and the other person is wrong, they have sentenced their own offspring to a different life of not knowing their own extended family; and they have denied the older generation the joy and pleasure of seeing grand-children, nephews and nieces growing up.

What chance has the world to know peace if we can't keep the peace amongst our own families.

When conflict is great in the world we should recognise it for what it is. The continuous challenge of the devil against the Kingdom of God. It is by sowing conflict, fears and doubts that he surely draws us away from the path to eternal Heaven.

We make Satan's work easy for him by maintaining our point of view that we were right in our  disagreements with others. We do this without analysing how important the matter is compared to an eternity in hell.

Truly, the world will never know peace until it learns to forgive.

If we are to dispel our worries, fears and doubts about the future, let us start by making peace with God and each other.

Sunday 14 April 2024



Scars are a reminder to forgive again. 

Look people, we all have scars. We may try hiding them with a piece of Elastoplast plaster, or with mascara make-up paint that hide blemishes on our skin, or by wearing long sleeved shirts and blouses; but the scars are still there and will always remain there.

Especially those scars on our minds that remind us of hurts done to us in the past and the pain keeps re-ocurring with every reminder. They will also always be there. We may hide them with different camouflage, like humour, or shrugging of the shoulder and pretending all is well, or by convincing ourselves and others that we have moved on and its all behind us. 

But who are we kidding? The scars are still there and if we're not careful they'll affect our life, our progress and our future.

We must deal with our scars.

Jesus said, "I have come in order that you might have life--life in all its fullness." John 10:10  

He did not say that we should restrain life with scars, regrets and self-admonition.

When we let our scars hold us back we are doing Christ a disservice and insulting the great sacrifice He endured for us on the Cross.

He has scars too on His hands, feet and side. When He sees them He asks His Father to forgive once again.

We too, should use our scars as an opportunity to forgive once again and move on in God's grace and love.

Saturday 13 April 2024

Father Francis Sings



Thursday 11 April 2024

My Dear Atheist Friend


My Dear Atheist Friend,

I really am not able to convince you that God exists; some would say I should not even try. This is because you are probably well-educated, logical and clinical in your thinking, and analytical in search of proof and evidence in your research. 

Either that, or you probably never gave God a thought and are not likely to start doing so now. 

Either way, I am advised that it is better not to engage in conversation and try to change your mind, because your mind is made up, and you are right, and it follows that everyone else is wrong in their beliefs.

The thing is, I admire your Faith. You are sure, certain even, that God does not exist. 

I sometimes wish that believers in God had as much Faith as you. But they often doubt, hesitate, wonder and analyse what they believe. To them, nothing is 100% certain. They just believe in blind Faith; without tangible measurable proof that your intellect would require and insist on. 

But then, is that not what Faith is about? To believe when your common sense tells you not to?

Some believers, like me, would say that they have proof that God exists, and that Jesus is His only Son. 

They would say that God proved it to them personally. Their stories may differ as to how and when they were assured by God of His existence. How they came to believe. But the thing is that whatever they say, it will lack the evidence and proof that an analytical searching mind would require.

Others would say that Faith is a gift from God. We are given Faith by His grace. That is true, but we must take the first step. We must want to have Faith. We must want to believe. God does not force Himself on anyone. No one is sent to Heaven against their wishes.

There's one thing, however, I would ask you my Atheist friend. Have you considered the possibility that in one chance per million you are possibly wrong in your belief?

I shall pray that one day you may consider that possibility.

God bless.

Wednesday 10 April 2024

Much Ado About Laughter

"Outside of a dog, a book is man's best friend, and inside of a dog it's too dark to read." (Groucho Marx)

MUCH ADO ABOUT LAUGHTER is not a book for dogs. 
It is a book of short humourous stories and anecdotes, some heard here and there over the years, others originating from the deep recesses of my mind. They have been carefully selected by me and my loyal readers as amongst our favourites to hopefully make you smile when life is dark and miserable, or even when a bright light shines inside your dog.

My English teacher used to say never split an infinitive. So he will not be happy with “to hopefully make you smile”; but then, he did not write a book like this did he?

He also told me once “Your grammar stinks!” Which was very hurtful I think, especially since my grandma always smelled of lavender perfume and eau de cologne.

MUCH ADO ABOUT LAUGHTER is available in Paperback and KINDLE from HERE

A 2 minute trailer advertising MUCH ADO ABOUT LAUGHTER
From the moment I picked your book up until I laid it down I was convulsed with laughter. Someday I intend reading it. (Groucho Marx).



Tuesday 9 April 2024

Time to Smile


Wife, “Honey, soon there will be 3 of us here! Isn’t that great?”
Husband replies excitingly, “Oh darling, that is simply wonderful!!!”
Wife, “I’m so happy you react that way! I did tell my Mom you won’t mind her moving in!” 


Grandpa’s last words will stay with me forever: “Quit rattlin’ the ladder ya little hooligan!”


An elderly man was on the operating table, about to be operated on by his son, a famous surgeon. Just before they put him under, he asked to speak to his son:
"Don’t be nervous, boy, just do your best and just remember, if it doesn’t go well, if something happens to me… your mother is going to come and live with you and your family."


A new boss is appointed in an office, and he has a really fierce reputation.
He’s walking through the office for the first time when he spots a guy just leaning against a door frame, doing nothing just staring in mid-distance.
The boss decides to show everybody how things are going to be from now on. He approaches the guy and asks him sternly, “What is your monthly salary?”
“£1500,” replies the man, a bit surprised.
The boss whips out his wallet, thrusts £3000 at the guy and yells, “There’s your two months’ pay, now get out of here and never show your face again!”
The guy takes the money and leaves. The boss, feeling good he’s shown everybody how idle hands are dealt with, asks, “So what was that lazy jerk doing in this place?”
One clerk shrugs, “He just delivered our pizza.”


A wife calls her husband at work, “Robert, have you ever experienced this piercing pains all over your body? Like as if somebody had a voodoo doll image of you and was sticking pins into it?”
“No…” he replied confusedly.
“Alright, hang on… and now?”


A jellyfish has existed as a species for 500 million years, surviving just fine without a brain. That gives hope to quite a few people.


A chemist walks into a pharmacy and says, “Do you have acetylsalicylic acid, please?”
“You mean aspirin?” wonders the pharmacist.
“Ah yeah, aspirin, I can never remember that name!”


I went on a date with a chess player to an Italian restaurant with chequered table cloths. It took him maybe half an hour to pass the salt.

Monday 8 April 2024

Old Masters


1 - Ok Folks, once again I need your help. In an attempt to appear learned I have been studying old masterpieces and wondering what was in the artist's mind when he created such a work which is so admired years later. The first is a sculpture by Rodin called The Kiss. As you can see, I have renamed it "I can see right up your nose!"

Can you think of a better or more amusing title for No. 1?

For fun, no prizes, can you rename the masterpieces below, and for an extra point, do you know who the artist is?  





Sunday 7 April 2024

Doubting Thomas


John 20:19-31

...  Now Thomas, (also known as Didymus), one of the Twelve, was not with the disciples when Jesus came ...

... A week later His disciples were in the house again, and Thomas was with them. Though the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them and said, “Peace be with you!” Then He said to Thomas, “Put your finger here; see my hands. Reach out your hand and put it into my side. Stop doubting and believe.”

Thomas said to Him, “My Lord and my God!”

Then Jesus told Him, “Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”

How do you feel about that? Don't we too have our faith going up and down from time to time? Sometimes we are so sure in what, or Whom, we believe, and at other times we're confused, our head is in a spin, and we wonder what's it all about.

Before judging poor Thomas who, with the other disciples, had gone through a horrendous period seeing Jesus, their leader, arrested, tortured and crucified, let us for a while consider things from his viewpoint.

Remember, the other disciples too did not believe when the women gave them the news that Jesus had risen from the dead. So they have nothing to be congratulated for.

They were all in a trauma; until they saw Jesus with their own eyes and He showed them His wounds and spoke to them.

Unwittingly, Thomas did us all a favour. Because he did not at first believe, Jesus appeared again and the event was witnessed and written about by John. Had Thomas believed the disciples this event would not have happened and written about for us to read and believe.

A sober thought when we too sometimes hesitate in our faith. 

I believe Lord, help my unbelief.  Mark 9:24

Friday 5 April 2024



Right folks, I need your help with this. We were having a discussion at a family gathering over Easter and the subject was the most popular tourist attraction in the world. Someone suggested the pyramids, or Niagara Falls, Disney World, or the Eiffel Tower.

Personally, I don't agree about the Eiffel Tower and would not recommend it. It is not authentic. I went there some years ago and it does not lean to one side as in the photos. We bought a small model of the tower and when we got home it too was as straight as can be. I had to put some chewing gum under two of the legs to make it lean sideways. Only we did not know whether it should lean to the left or the right. Someone suggested it depends on which way you approach it. But when you're at home you can only approach it from the door as you enter the room. They should give you instructions with the model as to where you put the chewing gum - not included.

I suggested a great tourist attraction is the screwdriver museum. I think it's either in London or Edinburgh. I've never been, but I read it contains all kind and size of screwdrivers over the ages. Some have different tips like a cross rather than a straight line, others have a tip that looks like a star. Others have a magnetic tip so that the screw does not fall off. You could be there all day marvelling at all the exhibits.

Also, another great tourist attraction is the cross-junction between Acacia Avenue and Acorn Drive. It is visited by thousands of tourists every year, but has never been mentioned in tour guide magazines or brochures, despite its many visitors and it being near the local airport. There's also a nearby fast-food restaurant there in case you're a bit peckish whilst watching the passing traffic.

I heard that somewhere, can't remember where, there's a pencil museum. It contains all sorts of pencils of different sizes, colours, hardness of tip, and graduation of the graphite it contains. They have there a pencil used by Shakespeare when he wrote his plays. It's graded 2B, or not 2B; can't remember exactly which.

There's also a famous museum containing glasses/spectacles of famous people over the ages. Including the ones that Van Gogh dropped when he cut off his ear.

Anyway, how about you? What do you think is the most famous tourist attraction?

Thursday 4 April 2024

The innocence of youth


I wonder what advice you would give to your younger self. Think back to your late teens or twenties and the things you did then; what would you like to have done differently? What advice would you give to you the teenager or twenty something?

I would tell my younger self that sometimes some women, or ladies, can be very unreasonable. This happened to me when I was dating a beautiful fellow worker. I was about 22 and she was the same age. We'd been out together once or twice to the cinema and we were in the early stages of getting to know each other.

So I invited her to my place for a meal. I looked forward to it all week; and she said so was she. On the Saturday she turned up looking the most glamourous I'd ever seen her. She was wearing a brand new red dress which she had bought for the occasion and matching red earrings and red shoes. She reminded me of the song Lady in Red by Chris de Burgh. Do you know the song? I'll never forget the way she looked that night. My Lady in Red.

Then she spoiled it all by point blank refusing to cook. There was a football match on TV I wanted to watch and she refused to cook. Don't you think she was being unreasonable? It's not every day my favourite team is on TV.

She got angry and started crying. She said she looked forward to a romantic candle lit dinner and I don't know what else she wanted. I searched for a couple of candles from the cupboard under the kitchen sink, and she cried all the more.

I suggested I phone for pizzas; but that didn't help either. She wanted to leave and asked me to phone her a taxi.

I offered her a packet of potato chips to pacify her and she threw it back at me crushing all the bits inside. 

She would not stop crying whilst the game was on TV until the taxi came. She left slamming the door behind her.

On Monday at work she'd told all her friends and they gave me a hard time as if it was my fault.

If I could I would advise my younger self to get it in writing what my girl-friend expects when invited for a romantic dinner.

Don't you think she was unreasonable?

Tuesday 2 April 2024

Have you been to Emmaus?


Just after Christ’s Resurrection, two of His followers were going to Emmaus. (Luke 24: 13-35).

They were totally distraught about Jesus’ death, and even though there was now news that His tomb is empty and that Christ is alive, they were still down-hearted and confused.

Jesus appeared to them on the way. They did not recognize Him. They spoke with Him and told Him their news. They said that their Lord and leader had been crucified, and there were rumours going around that He was alive again.

Jesus did not tell them who He was but explained to them the prophets’ predictions about Him. He walked with them all the way to Emmaus, but still they did not recognize Him. It wasn’t until He broke and blessed the bread that they recognized Him.

Why? I ask myself.

Why did they not recognize Him when they first saw Him, or when He took the time to explain to them the writings of the prophets?

Could it be that their minds were more pre-occupied with their problems and their dilemma rather than listening to Him?

You can just imagine how their mind worked and how concerned they were about their predicament.

Their leader is dead. What are they to do now? Is it all over? Every thing He said and taught comes to nothing? And what of the future? What are His followers to do now?

But aren’t we just the same.

How often do events touch our lives and turn it upside down. Events perhaps of our making, or events that we did not contribute to but they affect us all the same.

And we panic. What are we to do now? What will happen next?

We fear the future, we fear matters getting out of our control and we turn our attention to our problems and our dilemma. Just like those two on the way to Emmaus.

Yet, all the time we are panicking Jesus is there. Walking beside us. Quite literally. Waiting for us to recognize Him, hold His hand in the full knowledge and trust that He will see us through our darkest hour.

It is our doubts, our fears and our worries which prevent us from seeing Him.

Tell Peter


When they entered the tomb, they saw a young man dressed in a white robe sitting on the right side, and they were alarmed. But he said to them, “Do not be alarmed. You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified. He has risen! He is not here! See the place where they put Him. But go, tell His disciples and Peter, ‘He is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see Him, just as He told you.’”Mark 16:5-7

This passage is described in all four Gospels. Mark specifically said, "go tell His disciples and Peter ..."

Why did he single out Peter in this way? No such emphasis in the other Gospels. Look them up.

Let's now consider this. 

"Jesus answered (Thomas), 'I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.' " John 14:6

This is one of the most controversial and unpalatable quotation of Jesus.

You have to make up your mind. Is Jesus a liar, or is John 14:6 true?

Remember that just before the Crucifixion Peter had denied Christ three times. Basically, he put himself away from the path to God. Jesus had said so clearly in John 14:6.

Peter must have been in total despair. It is no wonder he did not follow Judas' example and hanged himself.

That is probably why the "young man dressed in a white robe", (an angel), specifically said go to Peter. To reassure the man that he is forgiven.

And so are we forgiven, no matter what we have done, if we confess and repent genuinely.