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Sunday, 19 April 2020

Challenge for the week

Have you seen something beautiful and lovely today?

“The heavens are telling the glory of God; and the firmament proclaims his handiwork(Psalm 19: 1)

In an evening prayer service lead by Canon Marcia Wall she said “I hope you have seen something beautiful and lovely today. Canon Marcia had been speaking about how nice it was to see all the different birds drinking and washing in the birdbath her family had inherited from her mother-in-law.  It led me to think about what I had seen that was nice and beautiful and lovely.

The first thing that sprung to mind was the walks I have had with my grandson since the lockdown. It is no easy task trying to work from home whilst keeping children entertained at the same time. This where I come in. I have temporarily moved in with my daughter, her husband and my grandson, Archie who is 20 months old. One of my greatest pleasures has been to take Archie for a daily walk.

He is very much an outdoor sort of little boy and our favourite walk is only a short distance from where he lives.  We walk there most mornings. As we walk along the lane people call out and greet us, Archie always responds with a wave and a smile. We collect sticks and stones as we go and enjoy playing Pooh sticks or hearing the “sploosh” of the stones and they hit the water in the stream. On picking up one of the stones Archie caught sight of a worm, the first one he had ever seen. He squealed with joy as he watched this little worm wriggle around, he even dared to pick it up. Nana was not too pleased when he wanted me to do the same!

It was quiet and still as we walked further up the lane. Goats were basking in the sunshine whilst keeping an eye on their kids. Sheep could be heard bleating on the hillside, two or three fields away. Birds were twittering in the hedgerow and one or two horses were whinnying as they cantered around a field. We stopped and I encouraged Archie to listen to all the different sounds that we could hear.

Further up the lane as we approached a smallholding the gentle harmonious sounds we had just listened to, were drowned out by ducks and geese making a real cacophony of noise. It was as if they were trying to outdo each other with all the noise they were making.  As we returned down the lane, Archie continued to be fascinated by all manner of things, from ant’s scurrying along the pavement, to seeing airplanes high in the sky leaving a trail behind.  We desperately tried coaxing a cat to come a little nearer so that he could stroke him. He looked wistfully at a slide in a garden and saying “Archie slide, Archie slide.

As we got nearer home, I encouraged him to look and smell all the different plants and flowers that were springing up on the roadside and in gardens. He watched with great fascination as he saw the bin men empty the bins. He became really excited when he saw a policeman who had stopped his car, to wave to Archie and then gave him a display of car’s flashing light. He was even more excited to see a tractor trundling up the lane with lots of logs on a trailer. When we got home, we walked into the back garden and saw a wood pigeon hopping around the flower bed. Archie watched with great intensity as the bird finally found what it was looking for. It picked up a stick almost bigger than itself and flew off with it in his mouth. We could hear the birds singing, bees buzzing happily around the flowers and squeals of laughter from other children playing in their own back gardens.

None of what I have described is anything new. I have seen and heard it all before on various other walks. The difference is, previously I probably didn’t stop and pay enough attention to all the details of life that surrounded me and how much pleasure can be derived from the beauty of the simpler things in life

“I hope you have seen something beautiful and lovely today”.

Not only had we seen something beautiful and lovely but we had also heard. Walking with my grandson is a good reminder that sometimes I need to slow down and breathe in the beauty of God’s creation. Maybe you need to as well.

I wonder, what have you seen that is beautiful and lovely today? In Revd Lyn’s own words “my challenge to you this week is to find something beautiful and lovely in each and every day and give thanks to God.



  1. Thanks for this Chris, it was beautifully written and on reading it for the second time this morning, I realised how much I needed to act on it.

  2. Thank you Revd Chris, great way to start the day

  3. Thank you Chris. I am so lucky to be able to see and hear the wonders of this world.