Thursday, 5 November 2015
I never knew my Grandad properly. Oh yes, we'd had fun together and made memories. But at eighteen you don't think you need to ask anything from an old man. You think you already know everything there is to know about the world. It never occurs to you that they have lived a whole life before you came along. You never ask them how they did life.
And so today, as I remember my Grandad with a mischievous twinkle in his eye and a fierce faith in his heart, I wonder what he would say to us today with the challenges we face. In the busy-ness of our lives full of heartache and joy, how I wish I could sit down with him now and pluck the wisdom that must have been oozing from his very being.
Then I think of the words of a hymn we sung at his funeral. And I realise these are the exact words he would be saying to us now, his grandchildren, his heritage.
Fight the good fight with all thy might!
Christ is thy strength and Christ thy right;
Lay hold on life, and it shall be
Thy joy and crown eternally.
Run the straight race through God's good grace,
Lift up thine eyes and seek His face;
Life with its way before us lies
Christ is the path and Christ the prize.
Cast care aside, lean on thy Guide;
His boundless mercy will provide;
Trust, and thy trusting soul shall prove
Christ is it's life and Christ it's love.
Faint not, nor fear, His arms are near,
He changeth not, and thou art dear;
Only believe and thou shalt see
That Christ is all in all to thee.
And these words, whispered to me as though he is sitting right in my kitchen, throw me back into the arms of the One I lean on. My Grandad is celebrating now. His fight is over. But ours continues and so we trust, we lean, we lift up our eyes and we run our race surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses cheering us on with the hope of our prize before us.