Chapter 172 [Day 350]: Wednesday 3 March
Good morning all
The unseasonally mild weather of last week led many people, including some TV weather presenters, to proclaim ‘Spring has arrived’ and despite temperatures having since plunged below the normal for early March, the spells of sunshine seem to confirm it. Meteorological Spring occurred on 1 March whilst Astronomical Spring arrives on 20 March but whatever, there are evidences of Spring all around us. Last week daffodil bulbs were springing open and this week we have yellow flowers in our garden. For the past couple of weeks spring flowers have appeared around the park and in the woods and blossom buds on the trees are already beginning to open.
Spring is always a positive time as new life appears around us. We use the word ‘spring’ in a number of ways to signify hope and positive things – ‘springing into life’ or ‘he’s got a spring in his step’ and the words of the 18th century poet Alexander Pope, ‘Hope springs eternal’. Most of our readers will remember a song recorded in 1958 by Max Bygraves – ‘When it’s Spring again, I’ll bring again, tulips from Amsterdam’.
Remember it ?? >>> https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qPsq6flck2A
Since the dawn of time, animals, birds and humans have gone to springs and wells for fresh clean water and in our modern society, bottled spring water is often preferred to what comes out of our taps.
The Bible also refers to the encouragements of Spring season albeit perhaps not precisely worded for our English climate -
Look, the winter is past, and the rains are over and gone. Blossom has appeared and the flowers are springing up, the season of singing birds has arrived (Song of Songs 2:11-12)
Later this month we reach the anniversary of the first national lockdown. The last ‘normal’ Sunday service including singing and communion was 15 March and the last Coffee Morning on 17 March. The Chapel buildings then remained closed for 6 months until we were able to reopen for ‘limited’ services from 27 September but after only 6 Sundays, we had to close again. Now here we are in Spring 2021 wondering what will happen in the coming weeks/months?
Most of our Chapel members have now had their first ‘jab’ so there seems to be some progress but we must wait to see what happens to infection rates over the next month. We still can’t give definite dates when Chapel activities will restart and maybe when they do, things will be different from what we previously regarded as ‘normal’.
We have heard a Scripture verse being quoted many times over the past year and continue to wait with anticipation of how and where God will lead us through the coming months.
The prophet Isaiah saw new things springing up and today we need to keep looking for the new opportunities that will arrive.
Isaiah 43:19 - See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.
And then in the New Testament, Jesus promised –
John 4:14 - whoever drinks the water I give them will never thirst. Indeed, the water I give them will become in them a spring of water, welling up to eternal life.’
Hymnalong for today >>> FOR I'M BUILDING A PEOPLE
· Vivian has recently suffered severe depression and is struggling to make sense of the current situation with lockdown, shops closed and a big thing for her is the Chapel being closed for Sundays and Coffee Mornings etc. There are already several Chapel members chatting to her on a regular basis but if you would be willing to phone her for a brief chat from time to time, it would probably encourage her until she can meet with us again face to face. Her mobile number is 07305 562123. Of course even if you can’t call her, you can uphold her in your prayers.
· A reminder of the World Day of Prayer event on Friday 5 March at Holy Trinity Catholic Church, Lichfield Road. Chris Brookes has service booklets for anyone who is planning to watch online. The link for the online broadcast is >>> www.churchservices.tv/suttoncoldfield
· 3 big Thank You’s from Anne Roberts, Chris Brookes and Wesley for the loads of birthday cards received
MAKE YOU SMILE:
Some years ago, scientists at Rolls Royce built a gun designed to launch dead chickens at the windshields of airliners and military jets when travelling at maximum velocity. The purpose was to simulate the frequent incidents of collisions with airborne fowl to test the strength of the aircraft windshields.
American engineers heard about the gun and were eager to test it on the windshields of their new high-speed trains. Arrangements were made and a gun was shipped to the American engineers. When the gun was fired, the engineers watched in shock as the chicken hurtled out of the barrel, crashed through the ‘shatterproof’ windshield, blasted through the control console and snapped the engineer's back-rest in two and embedded itself in the back wall of the driver’s cabin.
The horrified engineers sent Rolls Royce the film of the disastrous results of the experiment along with the design spec of the windshield and asked the British engineers for suggestions.
Rolls Royce replied with this one line response......
..."Defrost the chicken first!".
Enjoy these Spring days despite the cool temperatures and we’ll be in touch again Sunday