Finding your handiwork displayed for all the world to see

Found on the web, one photograph of the West Shed points indicator at Tywyn Pendre. Lettered (in good old-fashioned Letraset) by yours truly some years ago. Still looking quite presentable.

These points used to be on lever 12 until the preparatory works for the (subsequently cancelled) Pendre signalling scheme made it desirable to reclaim the lever for other purposes and the points ended up worked by a rather nice LNWR foot-release lever by the shed door.


The smell of fish

Our house smells of fish. This is my fault.

Today was Harvest Thankgiving at St. Stephen’s and yours truly got to preach. We decided to switch the reading to John 6:1-13 – the feeding of the five thousand – after seeing the wonderful harvest loaf that was very kindly made for us by students at Birmingham College of Food, Tourism and Creative Studies, depicting the five loaves and two fish.

It occurred to me that I had rarely if ever seen a preacher use real fish as visual aids when preaching on this passage and, as this was an all-age type service, decided that something had to be done about this. Five mini mince pies and two fillets of rainbow trout. Now I know why most people use cardboard fish!

Where are you, Mackie?

Mackie is the name of one of our Lego figures. Today, No. 2 child (we think) hid him somewhere, probably in No. 1 child’s bedroom. We have yet to find him. Where are you, Mackie? But alas, Lego figures cannot speak.

The one good thing is that, thankfully, it was Mackie rather than Reuben that got lost. Mackie belongs to myself, whereas Reuben came with the Lego set that No. 1 child got for his 4th birthday yesterday. If Reuben had been lost…

I do wonder where No. 1 child gets these names from, though.

Coffee-haters unite

I dislike coffee. So, it turns out, does famous blogger Tim Challies. (BTW you too can learn how to become a famous blogger.)

The thing is, at Valley Church Centre (where I go from time to time to take services) they only serve coffee after the services. Once, I happened to mention in my sermon that I don’t like coffee. That Sunday, I was offered tea. Subsequently, coffee again. I am going there again on 25th November (Christ the King) so this is a chance to see if anyone at Valley reads this blog. (Pretty unlikely.)

A certain good friend (who may be reading, who knows?) apparently told his new colleagues, on his first day in post, “Oh no, I don’t like coffee – it doesn’t taste like tea”. I always knew he was a sensible chap.

FeedBurner email updates and Timezones

Over at The Parish of Elmdon we’re now using FeedBurner for our feeds. Good stuff, and the email updates are a nice touch for those who haven’t quite been converted to using a proper feed reader quite yet. (Sign up for our email updates!) Just one thing: the emails give the post timestamps in CDT:

Sample email from FeedBurner

Umm, I’m actually not in the US central time zone, I’m pretty close to the Greenwich Meridian. A glance at the source for our feed shows no CDT nonsense. Reading the FeedBurner fora, this has been a known issue for nearly a year.

Come on, FeedBurner! Some of us live outside North America. It’s true.

Favourite songs (2): When I was lost

Next up, When I was lost you came and rescued me by Kate and Miles Simmonds. This is one of the few songs that invariably causes me to hit my iPod’s “No, I want to listen to that again!” button.

When I was lost you came and rescued me;
Reached down into the pit and lifted me.
O Lord, such love:
I was as far from you as I could be.
You know all the things I’ve ever done,
But Jesus’ blood has cancelled every one.
O Lord, such grace, to qualify me as your own.

There is a new song in my mouth,
There is a deep cry in my heart,
A hymn of praise to Almighty God – hallelujah!
And now I stand firm on this Rock,
My life is hidden now with Christ in God.
The old has gone and the new has come – hallelujah!
Your love has lifted me.


Kate & Miles Simmonds
Copyright © 2001 Thankyou Music

It’s Psalm 40:1-3,5 but not, perhaps, in quite the musical style the Psalmist would have intended, and mixed with 2 Corinthians 5:17 and Colossians 3:3. It is very direct! Before knowing Christ, I was not merely “mistaken”; I was not simply full of unfulfilled potential. I was lost and in a pit and could not get myself out. This song pricks the bubble of my pride on that, and this is a good thing. And how can I respond to God’s initiative but by singing a new song that echos the deep cry of joy in my heart?

Notes on the song from Kate Simmonds.