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Yay…My MS Society T-Shirt! 🤣

Yesterday my lovely wife Sarah came out on the trail with me, and she took some photos of me wearing the amazingly bright t-shirt the MS Society gave me to help promote their great charity during my trail marathon training! It was freezing cold and raining but that didn’t stop us…Until it proper chucked it down and we had to get home fast, lol! 💪🏼 😀 

One of the finest things in a complete Christian character

One of the finest things in a complete Christian character

(J.R. Miller, “Learning to Be Thoughtful” 1898)

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One of the finest things in a complete Christian character
, is thoughtfulness. It gives awondrous charm to a life. It makes one a blessing wherever he goes. It tempers all his conduct, softening all natural harshness into gentleness, and giving a spirit of kindliness to his every word and act, and to all his bearing.

A thoughtful person does not have to be asked to help others–he helps, as it were, instinctively. He is ever ready . . . 
  to do the obliging thing, 
  to say the encouraging word, 
  to show an interest in the life of others, 
  to perform those countless little kindnesses which so brighten the common pathway. 

In much home-life, there is a lack of thoughtfulness shown. Not always is the speech gentle–sometimes it is sharp and bitter, even rude. Without being aware of it, many of us are miserably selfish in our life among others. We practically forget that there are any other people, or that we ought to make any sacrifices, or practice any self-denials, for their sake. 

Thoughtfulness will seek always to say kindly words, never words that will give pain–but ever those that will give pleasure. We have no right, for the sake of saying a bright thing, to let loose a shaft, however polished, that will make a loving heart bleed!

We all know in our own experience, the value of sincere and Christly thoughtfulness. We do not like to come in contact with thoughtless people. We know well how it hurts and how unbeautiful, how unchristian, it seems when we see it in another–and when our heart is the one that suffers from its harsh, rude impact. We all long for thoughtfulness in others; our hearts hunger and thirst for it. It is bread and wine to us.

What we long for in others in their relation to us, we should be ready to give to them. What in others hurts us, gives us pain–we ought to avoid in our contact with others. Thoughtfulness is one of the finest, ripest fruits of Christian love–and all who would be like the Master must seek to learn this lesson and wear this grace.

It is not your work that He wants most–it is you!

It is not your work that He wants most–it is you!

(J.R. Miller, “The Glory of the Commonplace”)

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“Arise, My darling, My beautiful one, and come with Me!” Song of Songs 2:10 

“He said to them: Come with Me by yourselves to a quiet place” Mark 6:31 

G. Campbell Morgan tells of a friend of his who had a little daughter that he dearly loved. They were great friends, the father and daughter, and were always together. But there seemed to come an estrangement on the child’s part. The father could not get her company as formerly. She seemed to shun him. If he wanted her to walk with him, she always had something else to do. The father was grieved and could not understand what the trouble was. 

His birthday came and in the morning his daughter came to his room, her face radiant with love, and handed him a present. Opening the parcel, he found a pair of exquisitely made slippers.

The father said, “My child, it was very good of you to buy me such lovely slippers.” 

“O father,” she said, “I did not buy them–I made them for you!”

Looking at her he said, “I think I understand now, what long has been a mystery to me. Is this what you have been doing for the last three months?”

“Yes,” she said, “but how did you know how long I have been at work on them?” 

He said, “Because for three months I have missed your company and your love. I have wanted you with me–but you have been too busy. These are beautiful slippers–but next time buy your present, and let me have you all the days. I would rather have my child herself, than anything she could make for me.”

Just so, we are in danger of being so busy in the Lord’s work that we cannot be enough with the Lord in love’s fellowship. He may say to us, “I like your works, your toils, your service–but I miss the loveyou gave Me at first.” 

There is real danger that we get so busy in striving to be active Christians, so absorbed in our tasks and duties, our efforts to bring others into the church–that Christ Himself shall be less loved, and shall miss our communing with Him. 

Loyalty to Christ means first of all devotion. Has Christ really the highest place in your heart? It is not your work that He wants most–it is you! It is beautiful to do things for Him, it is still more beautiful to make a home for Him in your heart. 

A young man, at great cost, brought from many countries the most beautiful materials he could find, and built an exquisite little chapel as a memorial to his dead wife. Only a few men could do anything so rare, so lovely. But the poorest of us can enthrone Jesus in our hearts–making a little sanctuary in our hearts for Him.

“Yet I hold this against you: You have forsaken your first love!” Revelation 2:4

iReminisce: Group B

me and Sahar in front of the beautiful Corsican hills

Bonjour mes amis (Good Morning My Friends

No way we’re in Corsica! My lovely wife Sarah is going to kill me for ruining this post with another of my digressions…But my fave cars of all time raced here and i can’t contain myself….Yes it’s Group B rally cars!  

Awwww i can hear that ferocious engine sound (and the monster dump valve) of one of my favourite cars…The Lancia Delta S4. It had an Abarth-designed supercharged and turbocharged 500bhp 1.8-litre engine, it could hit 60mph in just over two seconds…And this was 1986! 

But…After a fatal accident (here in Corsica) Group B rally cars were banned and a FISA investigation later proved that drivers’ reactions were too slow to keep up with Group B cars, and drivers’ eyes could not adjust their focus between the fast corners, which caused tunnel vision. Now that’s fast…And insane!! 

They said the cars had so much raw power but with little containment…I have a wife like that, lol! Sorry Sarah! 🤣  

View our full day in Corsica

iReminisce: The Original Olympic Start Line

The start line…

I thought the heat was blistering already but it didn’t prepare me for the inferno when we walked underneath the archway and onto the track. 🔥🔥

Sarah said “Steve you’ve got to get a photo of me at the original olympic start line! I’ve only been out of my aircast for a few weeks and it would make a great photo…Zena (Sarah’s friend) will comment straight away and tell me off, lol (she did). 😀  

“Here goes” i said “No pressure at all for this shot…It’s only a one off picture” But it worked and Sarah looks fantastic! Sarah had gone for months with an aircast, and now seeing her on the start line looking like a true olympian was another emotional moment for me. She really is my warrior princess wife! ❤️❤️❤️ 

Sarah doing a

View our full day in Olympia

iReminisce: The Unimog

The 1961 Yellow Unimog…

Awww friends….Let me introduce you to this Yellow, 1961 Unimog…..have you seen the tires, lol! It threw us around like crazy and i still can’t believe that he didn’t slow down for anything. There is no way a vehicle can hit rocks, huge pot holes, climb cracked hills and go around tight bends whilst travelling at break neck speed, it would have destroyed anything else and left them in a pile of spare parts, lol. I’m not sure they issued these with brake pedals! 😎

Sarah & i infront of the yellow 1961 Uniog

View our full day (Sarah’s Birthday) at Bonaire

iReminisce: Surf & Smile

Back at the dock…🛳 

After a short boat ride back to the ship, we had enough time to get changed, leave our bags and have a well needed iced-coffee before heading out to explore as much as we can without getting lost before the ship leaves.

We walked up one street and turned right before Sarah stopped and said “Wow, she’s having her photo taken in front of that cool wall art/sign. Quick get one of me” “Ok my lovely, you’re wearing your new yellow Michael Kors t-shirt too, i hope i get everything in”. Sarah had bought this t-shirt for our holidays and couldn’t wait to put on the lovely bright colours and flowers.

Sarah stood on a surf board in her new yellow Michael Kors t-shirt.

 This is one of my fave photos as it shows Sarah’s smile is as bright as her t-shirt. 

View our full day at Aruba

iReminisce: The Coconut Cake

Speightstown, Barbados…

And speaking of lovely architecture and colonial towns, your first stop is at Speightstown. Here you’ll enjoy seeing historic buildings and beautiful tropical beaches.

The tour guide kept talking about the PRC Bakery at our first stop, and said she was going in to get something for the trip. “OOohhhh maybe we could get a small cake for your birthday” “Yes let’s follow her and see what goodies they have?” As we walked in to the little bakery the guide said “Oh yes a lead pipe” as she picked one up and went to pay for it. “What’s a lead pipe?” i said to the guide “It’s a local cake but it can be used as a weapon too as it’s very heavy”. Sarah then passed me a bag with a cake in and said hold this “Wow this weighs about the same as a 16lb bowling ball” “everything is so heavy in here, nothing has fluffy cream like in England as it would melt instantly, lol”.

Sarah told the baker that we loved coconut and did e have anything with coconut in them? We only got 1 coconut slice as we didn’t know how sweet it was or even if we liked it?! 😋   

Me stood outsede the shop holding the coconut slice with my thumb sticking up and a big grin on my face!

 I never (ever) stop talking about this coconut slice as it’s the nicest cake i’ve ever tasted! The bell on the ‘Blind Sightseers Gastronomic Leaderboard’ was destroyed as this flew to the top of the cakes list! If i’d have known i would’ve stayed in the bakery and continued to eat every single last one of them! But we only had that one and we’ve never been able to go back since this monumental occasion. Oh yes…This monumental occasion is my lovely wife Sarah’s birthday! 🤣

View our full day (Sarah’s Birthday) in Barbados

Cut it off!

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Cut it off!

(J.R. Miller, “Daily Bible Readings in the Life of Christ” 1890)

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“If your hand or your foot causes you to sin, cut it off and throw it away. It is better for you to enter life maimed or crippled–than to have two hands or two feet and be thrown into eternal fire!” Matthew 18:8

Our life is so full of temptation and peril, that even its best things may become stumbling-blocks. Our very qualities of strength, may become fatal forces driving us to eternal ruin. 

Human beauty
 is a blessing from God–and yet beauty has proved a snare to many a woman, drawing her away from God. 

Ability to make money is a perilous gift, which has led many a man to spiritual ruin. It is better to altogether throw away the money-making ability, and go poor through life with the talent wasted and shriveled, and reach Heaven–than to exercise the ability and grow rich, and be lost forever! These are illustrations of our Lord’s meaning when He speaks of ‘cutting off’ the hand or the foot which causes us to sin.

The appetites, desires, and affections–are part of the glory of humanity; and yet, when they are unbridledthey have whirled many a noble life to eternal destruction!

A steam-boat came into port which had long been out on the sea. An accident had happened which caused delay. The coal gave out; then all that would burn–cargo, stores, furniture–had to be burned up, in order to bring the vessel home. At last she gained the shore, but stripped of everything of value. Yet it was better to burn up all her cargo and storesthan perish at sea.

Just so, some men can get to Heaven, only by sacrificing every earthly pleasure and crucifying every sinful desire; but who will say that the prize is not worth the sacrifice? 
The hand would be better chopped off
than steal or strike down another. 
The foot would be better cut off
than carry one into crime or sin. 
The eye would be better plucked-out
than by its lustful gazing set the soul on fire. 
A man on a wrecked vessel had better throw his bags of gold into the sea and have his life saved–than hold on to the gold and sink into the waves!

 

iReminisce: The St Maarten Necklace

The smell of the locals cooking on the market was amazing, but Sarah had found a sweet little craft stall. The lady created items from the coral found off the shores St Maarten. “Oooooh, i could have a necklace made from St Maarten”. I knew that to mean “i’m getting one, i just don’t know which one yet?!” 🤣  

close up photo of Sarah's neckolace she bought fromm a market stall in Marigot, St Maarten

⇧ Sarah’s St Maartens Coral Necklace ⇧  

Sarah really was starting to feel at home here,  but we had to get back to the bus! We enjoyed our stop in Marigot, and we said we’d love to spend a week here to investigate more! ☀️ 😀 

View our full day in St Maarten

iReminisce: The Blind Sightseers 1st Cruise

Sarah  i in Caribbean

⇧ Me & Sarah at St Kitts ⇧ 

From stunning, breathtaking views, horse riding in paradise, dancing with dolphins, River paddle boat trip, various island bus tours, 4×4 volcano ride, cable cars, OH…. and Sarah’s medical emergency in the middle of the Atlantic ocean, it’s been an unbelievable few weeks on our cruise holiday to the Caribbean, Azores & Spain (2015). 😲  

Please join us (The Blind Sightseers) on this incredible journey:

Transatlantic Sunset Tour: Day 1 ~ London – Jamaica

You shall love him!

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You shall love him!

(J. R. Miller, “Loving Your Neighbor”)

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“You shall love your neighbor as yourself.” Mark 12:31

What is it to love our neighbor? It is the loving that is hard. We could do almost anything else, short of loving unpleasant neighbors.

But love is the word–and no revised version changes it. No matter how disagreeable, unlovely, unworthy, our neighbors may be–still the commandment persistently and relentlessly says to us, “You shall love him!

Our neighbors are around us all the time, needing our love. Indeed, they touch our lives so continually, that we must guard our every look, word, and act–lest we hurt some sensitive spirit. 

Some people seem to forget that other people have feelings. They are constantly saying words and doing things which give pain. True love is thoughtful. We ought to train our hearts to the most delicate sense of kindness, that we may never, even jokingly, give pain to any other human being.

Our neighbors have hearts, and we owe to every one of them–the beggar we meet on the street, thedegraded wretch we find crawling in the mire of sin’s debasement, the enemy who flings his insults in our face–to every one, we owe the love that is thoughtful, gentle, and gives no hurt.

Our love ought also to be patient. Our neighbor will have his faults. But we are taught to bear with one another’s infirmities. 

If we knew the story of men’s lives, the hidden burdens they are often carrying, the unhealed woundsin their heart–we would have most gentle patience with them. Life is hard for most people, certainly hard enough without our adding to its burdens–by our criticisms, our jeering and contempt, and our lack of love.

iReminisce: Ilfracombe, Devon

A black and white photo of ilfracombe bay

A photo taken from our new years eve (Dec 2011) holiday with friends (Rob, Shelley, Tom, Abbie & Ella)  in Ilfracombe, Devon, England, UK. It was very windy and very wet! We had a fantastic time as the holiday home was overlooking this bay so we enjoyed lots of coastal walks and enjoyed local restaurants.

 Camera used – iPhone 4s (as it was raining i was too scared to take out my DSLR’s) 😨 

From The Archives: Draftin’

Draftin Logo

 My Thoughts 💭 

is your heart causing a ‘draft’ over people?
Are you the ice cold draft that puts a chill into people even before you meet? If someone were to say your name does it make them sigh and say “Oh no I haven’t got the energy.” Or does your name bring a smile to their face as they can’t wait to meet up again. 
 
Or…Are you a draft project?
Not quite finished or ready to be published yet, a broken toy forgotten on a shelf complaining because you feel your days are over. Are you sat waiting to bury your dead? waiting for your inheritance which you think will heal you. Then, and only then you decide to let Jesus walk alongside you…But NEVER in front!
 
Or…Do you create a backdraft?
Are you opening doors you know you shouldn’t be opening? Are you letting the flames consume you and pollute your mind??
 
Or…are you draftin’? 
Are you letting Jesus lead? Are you following really close behind as he pulls you along, while leaving you with the energy to help others and become your own draft? 🙏 😀 

iReminisce: Twinkling lights 😲

A whole building completley covered in sparkling blue lights

The twinkling lights on this department store in Florence, Italy were simply amazing to just stand and look at, but it soon became dark and we didn’t want to get lost on our first day! All of the streets were decorated beautifully with illuminated stars, borbals & bells so we quickly headed back to the hotel. What an amazing, exciting and tiring first day. 😀

View our full Tuscany Tour 

A great and noble army of holy women

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A great and noble army of holy women

(J.R. Miller, “Daily Bible Readings in the Life of Christ” 1890) 

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“And many women were there beholding from afar, who had followed Jesus from Galilee, ministering unto Him” Matthew 27:55

These were the earliest of a great and noble army of holy women–attached to Christ by deep, personal love, following and ministering unto Him. 

In all the ages since, Christian women have shown similar devotion and constancy to Christ–and similar heroic love in serving Him. The record of women’s ministry to Christ, is one of the brightest in all the world’s history!

Women owe an incalculable debt to Christ. He has lifted them up from base thraldom and from degradation. Women have always been grateful too, and have served Christ with great devotion. 

Women are found in every sickroom, bending over the sufferer with unwearying solicitude, with matchless tenderness ministering to bodily comfort, and pouring the warmth of affection upon feverish spirits. They are found in the wards of hospitals, and upon battlefields, moving like God’s angels in blessed, loving ministry.

Faithful Christian mothers are following the Master and doing work which will shine forever in glorious luster! 

Faithful Christian Sunday school teachers are doing quiet service in lowly paths–which in God’s sight, is nobler than that of many of earth’s famous ones!

Everywhere, too, there is an open field for woman’s ministry. Christ is no longer here in person to be served, as He was served by these women who followed Him from Galilee; but in His needy and suffering followers, He is ever present; and whoever will, may minister unto Him! For He said that in doing acts of kindness to the least of His people, we do them unto Him.

Much practical teaching is in this picture, which is here held up before every woman, inspiring her to wholeheartedly follow Christ. 

Why do so many young Christian girls choose a life . . .
  of idleness,
  of love of pleasure,
  of aimless, purposeless existence,
  of mere dressing, promenading, and trifling–
when such a life of glorious service is open to them?

 

iReminisce: Sarah’s Favourite Seat

Sarah sat in the window of the lighthouse looking out over the sea

This photo of Sarah sat in the window of the Old Hunstanton Lighthouse is a lovely memory for us. We rented the lighthouse for our honeymoon (2007) and then for the next 5 wedding anniversaries, and this is Sarah’s favourite seat! 😀 

Sarah works in London where it is very fast paced, crowded,  built up and very grey, she always looks forward to escaping the stress and relaxing by the sea. 💪🏼 ❤️

The goal of living in this world

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The goal of living in this world

(J.R. Miller, “Things That Endure”)

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The goal of living in this world, is ever to grow into more and more radiant and lovely Christ-like character–whatever our conditions or experiences may be.

We cannot escape temptations–but we are so to meet them and pass through them, as not to be hurt by them; to come out of them with new strength and new radiancy of soul. 

We cannot escape trials and difficulties–but we are to live victoriously, never defeated, always overcoming. 

We cannot find a path in which no sorrow shall come into our lives–but we are to live through the experience of sorrow, without being hurt by it.

Many people receive harm from the fires which pass over them. Many fall in temptation and lie in dust and defeat, not rising again. Many are soured and embittered by the difficulties, the irritations, the frictions, the cares of life. But the problem of Christian living, is to keep a sweet Christ-like spirit amid all that might embitter us–to pass through the fires, and not have the flames kindle upon us.

We live in the midst of the countless dangers through which we must pass in this world. Danger lurks in every shadow, and hides in every patch of sunshine. There are tempters all around us. Only by committing our lives day by day into the hands of Christ, can we be kept in safety amid the perils of this world. He is able to keep us from falling, to guard us from stumbling, and to set us before His presence without blemish, in exceeding joy!

 

Joy

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“Joy is a choice. It’s a matter of attitude that stems from one’s confidence in God- that He is at work, that He is in full control, that He is in the midst of whatever has happened, is happening and will happen. Either we fix our minds on that and determine to laugh again, or we wail and whine our way through life. We determine which way we will go.” – Chuck Swindoll

Will worrying make matters any better?

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Will worrying make matters any better?

(J.R. Miller, “Daily Bible Readings in the Life of Christ” 1890)

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“Who of you by worrying, can add a single cubit to his height?” Matthew 6:27 

So it is useless to worry! A short person cannot, by any amount of anxiety, make himself an inch taller. Why, therefore, should he waste his energy and fret his life away–in wishing he were taller? 

One worries because he is too short–another because he is too tall; 
one worries because he too lean–another because he is too heavy; 
one worries because he has a lame foot–another because he has a mole on his face. 
No amount of fretting will change any of these things!

People worry, too, over their circumstances. They are poor, and have to work hard. They have troubles, losses, and disappointments which come through causes entirely beyond their own control. They find difficulties in their environment which they cannot surmount. There are hard conditions in their lot which they cannot change.

Now why should they worry about these things? Will worrying make matters any better? Will discontent . . .
  cure the blind eye, or 
  remove the ugly mole, or
  give health to the infirm body? 

Will chafing make . . .
  the hard work, lighter; 
  or the burdens, easier; 
  or the troubles, fewer? 

Will anxiety . . .
  keep the winter away, or
  keep the storm from rising, or
  put coal in the cellar, or 
  put bread in the pantry, or 
  get clothes for the children? 

Even human reason shows the uselessness of worrying, since it helps nothing, and only wastes one’s strength and unfits one for doing one’s best!

The Christian gospel goes farther, and says that even the hard things and the obstacles–are blessings, if we meet them in the right spirit. They are stepping-stones lifting our feet upward–disciplinary experiences in which we grow. 

So we learn that we should quietly, and with faith in God’s Providence, accept life as it comes to us–fretting at nothing, yet changing hard conditions to easier ones if we can. And if we cannot, then we must use them as means for growth and advancement.

 “So do not worry, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’  For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them.  But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” Matthew 6:31-33

From The Archives: The Finish Line

Hi all…This is my first post from my ‘From The Archives’ series, i hope you enjoy reading some of the classics, lol?! 😀 

The Finish Line…

As a blind gamer, i was excited to be recommended(by my brother) a brand new racing game called “Project Cars” for the PS4. I’m able to attempt to play a few racing games, If they include Grand Prix tracks, i can often remember each corner from my sighted gaming days, playing F1 97 etc. 

When i sat down to play for 15 minutes last night, i was surprised to be taught a lesson on being over zealous, while lacking wisdom! 🙂

A close up photo of the amazing Ford Capri Touring Car

⇧ Screenshot of my 1980 Capri (Group 5 – Team Zakspeed) ⇧ 

I chose the rather extreme Capri to drive and chose a familiar track. After leaving the pits i span off on nearly every corner as my tyres were cold and not up to race temperatures. An influx of thoughts filled my mind,….

Over Zealous…

It reminded me of when i first became a Christian and first had revelation of the Truth when reading the Bible. I couldn’t believe what i was reading, and how it described me…yes me! I then did what normally happens, and become over zealous like a screaming twin turbo engine and had to tell everyone, and point out the right and wrongs with everything and everyone around me! 

I was making a lot of noise and using a lot of power and energy,  but was lacking something vital, i failed to slowly warm up the tyres of Godly Wisdom!

As we mature, and grow in step with the Holy Spirit, we are given all we need to finish the race. And when we get the balance right, we can stay on track until the end, and if our tyres stay hot, even the storms won’t be able to slow us down! 🙂

Making Doughnuts…

photo of a racing sierra cosworth with smoking tyres doing doughnuts at Donington race track

⇧ Screenshot of my 1988 Sierra RS500 Cosworth (Group A) ⇧ 

After selecting “Donington”, my home town track in Derby, i decided to take the Sierra Cosworth for a ride. I stopped to make some doughnuts, and thought “Here we go again, all that power and energy…and i’m just going round in circles”.

🙏 I want to thank God for not leaving us in the pits! But instead He empowers  instructs and steers us towards the finish line! 😀 

These are the idols of the heart!

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These are the idols of the heart! 

(John Angell James, “Spiritual Idolatry“)

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The first commandment of the decalogue says, “You shall have no other gods before Me.” The meaning of this precept, which is the foundation of all religion, is not merely that we shall not acknowledge any other God besides Jehovah–but also that we shall treat Him as God! That is, we . . .
  must love Him with all our hearts,
  serve Him with all our lives, and
  depend upon Him for our supreme felicity. 

It is obvious that whatever we love most, and are most anxious to retain and please–whatever it is we depend most upon for happiness and help–whatever has most of our hearts–that is in effect, our God! It does not matter whether it is friends, possessions, desires–or our own selves! 

These are the idols of the heart! 

SELF is the great idol which is the rival of God, and which divides with Him the worship of the human race. It is surprising and affecting to think how much SELF enters into almost all we do. Besides the grosser form of self-righteousness, which leads many unconverted people actually to depend upon their own doings for acceptance with God; how much of . . .
  self-seeking,
  self-valuing,
  self-admiration,
  self-dependence,
there is in many converted ones! 
How covertly do some seek their own praise in what they professedly do for God, and their fellow-creatures! How eager are they for the admiration and applause of their fellow-creatures! How much of self, yet how little suspected by themselves–is seen by One who knows them better than they know themselves, at the bottom of their most splendid services, donations, and most costly sacrifices!

In how many ways does self steal away the heart from God! How subtle are its workings, how concealed its movements, yet how extensive is its influence. How SELF . . .
  perverts our motives,
  lowers our aims,
  corrupts our affections, and
  taints our best actions!

How much incense is burned–and how many sacrifices are offered on the altar of this idol! 

“Little children, keep yourselves from idols!” 1 John 5:21

 


A lamp for my feet!

Grace logoA lamp for my feet!

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“Your Word is a lamp for my feet and a light on my path.” Psalm 119:105

God’s Word is represented as a lamp for the feet

It is a “lamp”–not a blazing sun, nor even a lighthouse–but a plain, common lamp or lantern which one can carry about in the hand. 

It is a lamp “for the feet,” not throwing its beams afar, not illumining a hemisphere–but shining only on the one little bit of road on which the pilgrim’s feet are walking.

The law of divine guidance is, “Step by step”. One who carries a lantern on a country-road at night, sees only one step before him. If he takes that step, he carries his lantern forward, and thus makes another step plain. At length he reaches his destination in safety, without once stepping into darkness. The whole way has been made light for him, though only a single step of it at a time. This illustrates the usual method of God’s guidance.

If this is the way God guides, it ought never to be hard for us to find our duty. It never lies far away, inaccessible to us–but is always near. It never lies out of our sight, in the darkness, for God never puts our duty where we cannot see it. The thing that we think may be our duty, but which is still lying in obscurity and uncertainty–is not our duty yet, whatever it may be a little farther on. The duty for the very moment is always clear, and that is as far as we need concern ourselves; for when we do the little that is clear, we will carry the light on, and it will shine on the next moment’s step.

Jesus said, “He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness.” Prompt, unquestioning, undoubting following of Christ–takes all the perplexity out of Christian life and gives unbroken peace. There never is a moment without its duty; and if we are living near to Christ and following Him closely, we shall never be left in ignorance of what He wants us to do.

Our daily prayer should be, “Direct my footsteps according to Your Word; let no sin rule over me.” Psalm 119:133

‘Steve’s Blindman Trail Marathon’ in memory of my mum Valerie ❤️

Hi all, this is the official release for my fundraising towards my brobdingnagian challenge…It’s exactly 7 calendar months until my trail marathon! 💪🏼 

‘Steve’s Blindman Trail Marathon’ in memory of my mum Valerie ❤️

I’m planning to step off the sidelines again soon… this time in memory of my wonderful mum, Valerie who died after a 14 yr struggle with Multiple Sclerosis, in the same month that I was registered blind.
I’ve always wanted to do something positive to celebrate her life and as you may know, my lovely wife Sarah has just started work at the MS Society. I can think of no better time or charity to make my fundraising in memory wish come true and I can finally add my mums name to the MS Society fight to stop MS. 💪🏼

I know I’ll be stretching myself past my limits for this challenge and so your encouragement and support would really help me to keep my training on track. Any donation you can spare would build my morale and endurance so I can smash this and reach my £1,000 goal to make my mum proud.

Together we can be a force for change and BEAT MS

1 MS Society Banner Marathon 001

Steve’s Blindman Trail Marathon
Fundraising for Multiple Sclerosis SocietyIn Memory of my mum Valerie

Story…

Hi, I’ve chosen to raise funds for MS Society and I’d love everyone who kindly decides to support me and this amazing charity, to take a moment to remember my lovely Mum Valerie!

She spent so much of her too short life giving to me and my siblings before MS took her independence and eventually her life. This is why I’ve decided to give something positive back. I want her name and face to join the fight so that she can live on through the tireless work the MS Society is doing to find treatments that will stop MS for good. 💪🏼

My beautiful mum passed away from progressive MS, after a courageous and tiring 14 year battle, in July 2000.

As you may know I’ve been registered blind since I was 25. My sight loss happened in the same month my mum finally lost her life and missing her added misery to my own struggle to come to terms with the isolation and insecurities of managing my new life as a blind man.

And so…….

My Challenge…Sunday 24th April 2022

I originally planned to take part in an MS officially organised event but quickly realised that with my sight loss walking an unknown route amongst so many people would create too much external stimuli on my senses and be too confusing for me to manage without serious injury.

I was worried I wouldn’t be able to do the challenge at all but I’ve finally found a safe(ish) trail about 2.5 miles long, in the woods and past a lake near my home. I am hoping this will work well as my walking route, (I’ve now learned it enough to be able to follow it without guided help). I think this trail will work really well for me to do my trail marathon challenge … if I can manage to make my way safely around this uneven, hilly, rough terrain about 11 times! 😰

I’ve begun to realise, as I write about this challenge during the start of my training, that I’ve only managed 2 laps each time so far, after which I collapse, needing water and food, lol! I have no idea how I’m going to continue for 11 laps non-stop but I’ve got seven more months to build up my strength and endurance… I hope. 🙏

It’s slowly dawning on me that this challenge is going to include around 8 hours non-stop blind walking… Ouch that’s going to hurt and take a lot of concentration, mental effort, strength, energy and discipline. And so before I get time to change my mind, I’ve decided to create a JustGiving fundraising page and I’ve notified the MS Society…so no backing out now 🤣.

Please help me complete what feels like an impossible challenge in memory of my wonderful mum… because Together we are strong enough to beat MS. 💪🏼

You can follow my training over the next 7 months on my Fitblitz blog and I will use my apple watch to count the steps, miles and elevation etc of the challenge, uploading the screenshots to let you know of my adventures and celebrate with me if I finish, lol! 🙌  

About Multiple Sclerosis Society

Over 130,000 of us in the UK have MS. It’s unpredictable and different for everyone. But it doesn’t have to be this way. We’re the MS Society. We understand what life’s like with MS. We’re here for you through the highs, lows and everything in between. Together, we are strong enough to stop MS.

Donating through JustGiving is simple, fast and totally secure. Your details are safe with JustGiving – they’ll never sell them on or send unwanted emails. Once you donate, they’ll send your money directly to the charity. So it’s the most efficient way to donate – saving time and cutting costs for the charity.

Click HERE for my JustGiving page.

QR Code for my JustGiving page: 

Please click of hold your camera at this QR code for my Blindman Trail Marathon JustGiving page

We should learn a lesson from the old heathen artist!

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We should learn a lesson from the old heathen artist!

(J.R. Miller, “Daily Bible Readings in the Life of Christ” 1890)

LISTEN to audio!  Download audio

(You will find it helpful to listen to the audio above, as you read the text below.)

“In the days of King Herod of Judea, there was a priest named Zechariah . . . and his wife Elizabeth . . . Both of them were upright in the sight of God, observing all the Lord’s commandments and regulations blamelessly.” Luke 1:5-6

This is a beautiful thing which God said of them. Yet, after all, that is the test which every life must endure. It is not enough to have human commendation. The question is: How do we stand before God? How does our life appear to Him? It does not matter how men praise and commend us, if God seesthat we are living wrong. The Pharisees were righteous before men; but if you would see how they stood in God’s eye, read the twenty-third chapter of Matthew: “You snakes! You brood of vipers! How will you escape being condemned to Hell!” (verse 33)

We are in reality, just what we are before Godnothing less, nothing more! The question we should always ask ourselves is, “What does God think of me?” If we would meet His approval, we must first have our hearts right–and then we must be blameless and upright in every part of our life.

One of the old heathen artists was chiseling the back part of his marble statue with great pains. “Why do you carve the tresses on back of the head of your statue so carefully?” asked one; “it will stand high in its niche against the wall, and no one will ever see its back.” “The gods will see it!” was the reply.

We should learn a lesson from the old heathen artist! We should do our work just as honestly, where it will be covered up and never seen by human eyes–as where it is to be open to the scrutiny of the world. For God will see it! We should live just as purely and beautifully in secretas in the glare of the world’s gaze! 

There really is no such thing as secrecy in this world. We imagine that no eye is looking, when we are not in the presence of men. But really, we always have a spectator–we are living all our life in the presence God Himself! We should train ourselves, therefore, to live for the Divine eye in all that we do–that our life may stand the Divine inspection, and that we may have the approval and commendation of God Himself!

“Nothing in all creation is hidden from God’s sight. Everything is uncovered and laid bare before the eyes of Him to whom we must give account!” Hebrews 4:13

 

The God of the broken-hearted

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The God of the broken-hearted

(J.R. Miller, “The Beatitude for the Unsuccessful” 1892)  LISTEN to audio!  Download audio

(You will find it helpful to listen to the audio above, as you read the text below.)

“The Lord is near the broken-hearted.” Psalm 34:18

The God of the Bible is the God of the broken-hearted

The world cares little for the broken hearts. Indeed, people oftentimes break hearts by their cruelty, their falseness, their injustice, their coldness–and then move on as heedlessly as if they had trodden only on a worm! But God cares. Broken-heartedness attracts Him. The plaint of grief on earth, draws Him down from heaven.

Physicians in their rounds do not stop at the homes of the well, but of the sick. So it is with God in His movements through this world. It is not to the whole and the well–but to the wounded and stricken, that He comes with sweetest tenderness! Jesus said of His mission: “He has sent Me to bind up the broken-hearted.” Isaiah 61:1

We look upon trouble as misfortune. We say that the life is being destroyed, which is passing through adversity. But the truth which we find in the Bible, does not so represent suffering. God is a repairer and restorer of the hurt and ruined life. He takes the bruised reed, and by His gentle skill makes it whole again, until it grows into fairest beauty. The love, pity, and grace of God, minister sweet blessing of comfort and healing–to restore the broken and wounded hearts of His people.

Much of the most beautiful life in this world, comes out of sorrow. As “fair flowers bloom upon rough stalks,” so many of the fairest flowers of human life grow upon the rough stalks of suffering. We see that those who in heaven wear the whitest robes, and sing the loudest songs of victory–are those who have come out of great tribulation. Heaven’s highest places are filling, not from earth’s homes of glad festivity and tearless joy–but from its chambers of pain; its valleys of struggle where the battle is hard; and its scenes of sorrow, where pale cheeks are wet with tears, and where hearts are broken. The God of the Bible is the God of the bowed down–whom He lifts up into His strength.

God is the God of those who fail. Not that He loves those who stumble and fall, better than those who walk erect without stumbling; but He helps them more. The weak believers get more of His grace, than those who are strong believers. There is a special divine promise which says, “My divine power is made perfect in weakness.” When we are conscious of our own insufficiency–then we are ready to receive of the divine sufficiency. Thus our very weakness is an element of strength. Our weakness is an empty cup, which God fills with His own strength.

You may think that your weakness unfits you for noble, strong, beautiful living–or for sweet, gentle, helpful serving. You wish you could get clear of it. It seems to burden you–an ugly spiritual deformity. But really it is something which, if you give it to Christ–He can transform into a blessing, a source of His power. The friend by your side, whom you envy because he seems so much stronger than you are–does not get so much of Christ’s strength as you do. You are weaker than him–but your weakness draws to you divine power and makes you strong.

“He heals the broken-hearted and binds up their wounds.” Psalm 147:3

✞ Eileen’s Funeral & Seeing Family ❤️

Eileen Funeral Service

⇧ Photo of Eileen on the front of the funeral service booklet ⇧ 

Yesterday (Tues 14/09/2021) me and my lovely wife Sarah travelled to Derby and back (in same day), to pay our respects at Eileen’s (my step mum) funeral at the Derby crematorium. Although it was a sad occasion for everyone…It was also a wonderful time as i’d not seen some of my family for 14 years…Even more in some cases!😲 

The service was a lovely tribute to Eileen and my Dad was amazing as it must have been so hard for him during this difficult time! Afterwards Eileen’s sisters Pam and Ann had prepared a buffet meal at Ann’s home which was fantastic…Thanks Elise for a lovely coffee! ☕ Sarah & i even got to meet some more of the family here too…Like chatting about cars (obviously) with uncle Colin who i’ve not seen since 2006 in Hunstanton, Norfolk. 

As it’s almost impossible for me and Sarah to know who is around…I don’t know all who were there?! So i was probably with more family than i knew about, lol. 🤣 It’s gatherings like this where me and Sarah seem the most ignorant, as we simply don’t see who is there, and unless they introduce themselves we have no idea?! 😨 

Funeral Family1

⇧ From left: Me, Sarah, Dad, Jahan (nephew), Saira (Niece), Charlotte (sister), Kam (friend), Ambber (sister), Zain (nephew), Saffy (niece), Amy (niece), Taylor (niece), Chloe (niece) & Zelaiya (niece) ⇧ 

I couldn’t believe how tall all of my niece and nephews were!! For example Taylor was 1 year old when we last saw her at our wedding…She’s now 15! 😲  Jahan & Zain (nephews) are now over 6ft tall! Most of them drive (including Amy who very kindly picked us up) and all of my nieces are lovely young ladies…It was fun tying to guess who’s who by the sound of their voices as i can’t see them at all! 🤣 I could do a post for each one of them…I’m so proud! 😲   

It was such a blessing to meet them all again and spend some time with them. They made the day run so smoothly even during this difficult time. ❤️

Ben (not in photo) kindly gave us a lift in his new Audi RS4 4.2 V8 to the train station to get back home…I’m writing a new post just on this experience as you know i love cars!! 💪🏼

Our words and deeds are irrevocable

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Our words and deeds are irrevocable

(J.R. Miller, “Devotional Hours with the Bible”)  LISTEN to audio!  Download audio

(You will find it helpful to listen to the audio above, as you read the text below.)


“But I tell you that men will have to give account on the day of judgment for every careless word they have spoken!” Matthew 12:36 

We cannot recall any word we have spoken. It may be a false word or an unkind word–a word which will blast and burn! Instantly after it has been spoken, we may wish it back and may rush after it and try to stop it–but there is no power in the world that can unsay the hurtful word, or blot it out of our life!

It is just so with our acts. A moment after we have done a wicked thing, we may bitterly repent it. We may be willing to give all we have in the world to undo it, to make it as though it never had been. But in vain. A deed done takes its place in the universe as a fact, and never can be recalled. 

We should be sure before we speak a word or do an act that it is right, that we shall never desire to have it recalled–for when once we have opened our lips, or lifted our hand, there will be no unsaying or undoing possible.

Our words and deeds are irrevocable. We cannot recall anything we have done, neither can we change it. But by other words and deeds, we may in some measure modify the effect of that which we cannot blot out. Paul could not undo his persecutions of Christians–but by a life to devotion to Christ’s cause–he could in a sense make reparation for the terrible harm he had done. 

Just so, we cannot undo the wrong things we have done–but we should strive to set in motion other influences which may at least compensate in some sense for the harm they have wrought. We cannot unsay the sharp word which wounds our friend’s heart–but we can by kindness and loyal devotion, yet bring good and blessing to his life.

Something to ponder
“There is no surer characteristic of a sincere lover of Christ, than a habitual desire to be like Christ, and an ardent zeal to promote His glory!” Archibald Alexander, 1772-1851

Do we love the Word?

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Do we love the Word?

(Thomas Watson, 1620-1686, “The Godly Man’s Picture Drawn with a Scripture Pencil“)

A godly man is a lover of the Word of God. Christ is the fountain of living water, the Word is the golden pipe through which it runs! 

A godly man diligently reads the Word of God. The noble Bereans “searched the Scriptures daily” (Acts 17:11). Apollos was mighty in the Scriptures (Acts 18:24). The Word is the field where the Pearl of Great Price is hidden. How we should dig for this pearl! A godly man’s heart is the library to hold the Word of God; it dwells richly in him (Colossians 3:16). By diligent conversing with Scripture, we may carry a Bible in our heads!

A godly man frequently meditates on the Word of God. “Oh, how I love your law! meditate on it all day long.” (Psalm 119:97). A pious soul meditates on the truth and holiness of the Word. He not only has a few transient thoughts, but leaves his mind steeping in the Scripture. By meditation, he sucks honey from this sweet flower, and ruminates on holy truths in his mind.

A godly man delights in the Word of God. It is his recreation. “When your words came, I ate them; they were my joy and my heart’s delight” (Jeremiah 15:16). Never did a man take such delight in a dish that he loved, as the prophet did in the Word. And indeed, how can a saint choose but take great pleasure in the Word? All of his eternal hopes are contained in it. Does not a son take pleasure in reading his father’s will and testament, in which he bequeaths his estate to him? “I delight in your commands because I love them! (Psalm 119:47) 

A godly man hides the Word of God. “Your word have I hidden in my heart” (Psalm 119:11)–as one hides a treasure so that it should not be stolen. The Word is the jewel; the heart is the cabinet where it must be locked up. Many hide the Word in their memory–but not in their heart. And why would David enclose the Word in his heart? “That I might be kept from sinning against You.” As a man would carry an antidote about him when he comes near an infected place, so a godly man carries the Word in his heart as a spiritual antidote to preserve him from the infection of sin. Why have so many been poisoned with error, others with moral vice–but because they have not hidden the Word as a holy antidote in their heart!

Do we love the Word? 
When we need direction, do we consult this sacred oracle? 
When we find corruptions strong, do we make use of this “sword of the Spirit” to hew them down? 
When we are disconsolate, do we go to this bottle of the water of life for comfort? 
Then we are lovers of the Word! 

“I love your commands more than gold, more than pure gold!” (Psalm 119:127)

 

I belong to the church; I suppose I am a Christian

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I belong to the church; I suppose I am a Christian

(J.C. Ryle, “Are You Born Again?“)

Are you born again? This is one of life’s most important questions. Jesus Christ said, “Unless a man is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God!” John 3:3

It is not enough to reply, “I belong to the church; I suppose I am a Christian.” Thousands of nominal Christians show none of the signs of being born again which the Scriptures have given us in the First Epistle of John.

“No one who is born of God will continue to sin” 1 John 3:9 

“We know that anyone born of God does not continue to sin” 1 John 5:18

A person who has been born again, or regenerated, does not habitually commit sin. He no longer sins with his heart and will and whole inclination. There was probably a time when he did not think about whether his actions were sinful or not, and he did not always feel grieved after doing evil. There was no quarrel between him and sin; they were friends. But the true Christian . . .
  hates sin, 
  flees from sin, 
  fights against sin,
  considers sin his greatest plague,
  resents the burden of sin’s presence,
  mourns when he falls under sin’s influence, 
  and longs to be completely delivered from sin. 

Sin no longer pleases him, nor is it even a matter of indifference to him; it has become the horrible thing which he hates. However, he cannot eliminate its presence within him.

If he said that he had no sin, he would be lying, 1 John 1:8. But he can say that he hates sin, and that the great desire of his soul is not to commit sin at all. He cannot prevent bad thoughts from entering his mind, or shortcomings, omissions, and defects from appearing in both his words and his actions. He knows that “we all stumble in many ways,” James 3:2. But he can truly say in the sight of God, that these things cause him grief and sorrow, and that his whole nature does not consent to them. What would the apostle say about you? Are you born again?

“No one who lives in Him keeps on sinning. No one who continues to sin has either seen Him or known Him. Dear children, do not let anyone lead you astray. He who does what is right is righteous, just as He is righteous.” 1 John 3:6-7 

 

A poor shoemaker in his dreary little shop

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A poor shoemaker in his dreary little shop

(J.R. Miller, “The Wider Life” 1908)  LISTEN to audio!  Download audio

(You will find it helpful to listen to the audio above, as you read the text below.)


“Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day.” 2 Corinthians 4:16

“For our perishable earthly bodies must be transformed into heavenly bodies that will never die!” 1 Corinthians 15:53

The lesson of the imperishable life, has a special application to those who suffer from sickness or from any bodily affliction. It will help us to endure physical sufferings quietly and unmurmuringly, if we will remember that it is only the outward man that can be touched and affected by these experiences, and that the inward man may not only be kept unharmed, but may be growing all the while in beauty and strength, being spiritually renewed through pain and suffering.

A poor shoemaker in his dreary little shop in a great city, one day noticed that there was one little place in his dark room, from which he could get a view of green fields, blue skies and faraway hills. He wisely set up his bench at that point, so that at any moment he could lift his eyes from his dull work–and have a glimpse of the great, beautiful world outside. 

Just so, from the darkest sick-room, and from the midst of the keenest sufferings, there is always a point from which we can see the face of Christ and have a glimpse of the glory of Heaven. If only we will find this place and get this vision, it will make it easy to endure even the greatest suffering.

“For we know that when this earthly tent we live in is taken down–when we die and leave these bodies–we will have a home in heaven, an eternal body made for us by God Himself and not by human hands. We grow weary in our present bodies, and we long for the day when we will put on our heavenly bodies like new clothing.” 2 Corinthians 5:1-2

Sickness is discouraging and is hard to bear. But we should remember that the doing of the will of God is always the noblest, holiest thing we can do any hour–however hard it may be for us. If we are called to suffer, let us suffer patiently and sweetly. Under all our sharp trials, let us keep the peace of God in our hearts. The outward man may indeed decay, but the inward man will be renewed day by day.

 

They play with fire, and wonder why they are burned!

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They play with fire, and wonder why they are burned!

(J.R. Miller, “The Way of Safety“, 1912)  LISTEN to audio!  Download audio

(You will find it helpful to listen to the audio above, as you read the text below.)

“Who can understand his errors? Cleanse me from hidden faults. Keep back your servant also from presumptuous sins; let them not have dominion over me. Then will I be blameless, innocent of great transgression.” Psalm 19:12, 13

Here the Psalmist prays to be kept from committing presumptuous sins. He knows the danger there is in such sins, and so pleads to be held back from them–that is, from willful, conscious, high-handed sins.

Mark the teaching, too, that these presumptuous sins spring out of the minute hidden faults. From hidden, obscure, undiscovered faults–come presumptuous sins. 

A slight moral weakness–grows into an evil tendency; 
and the evil tendency indulged–develops into a loathsome vice; 
and the loathsome vice–ripens into a presumptuous sin! 

We need to guard against carelessness concerning ‘little sins’. 
The hidden fault lurking in the nature, may grow into a presumptuous sin!

   Sow a thought–and you will reap an act; 
   sow an act–and you will reap a habit; 
   sow a habit–and you will reap a character; 
   sow a character–and you will reap a destiny!

The course of sin is terrible! The little beginnings of sin, grow into appalling consequences! Be afraid of little sins and temptations.

There are some people who are always courting danger. Sin seems to have a fascinationfor them. One of the petitions of the Lord’s Prayer is, “Lead us not into temptation.” To expose ourselves needlessly to temptation, is presumption! Yet there are many who do this. They play with fire, and wonder why they are burned! They dally with ‘little sins’, and end in shameful degradation at the last! They pay the penalty in moral and spiritual ruin. 

It is never safe to make pets of tigers!

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It is never safe to make pets of tigers! 

(J.R. Miller, “The Story of Cain and Abel” 1908)  LISTEN to audio!  Download audio

(You will find it helpful to listen to the audio above, as you read the text below.)

 

“Cain was very angry, and his face was downcast.” Genesis 4:5 

“Cain attacked his brother Abel and killed him!” Genesis 4:8

See here, the fearful growth of the evil feeling in Cain’s heart. It was only a thought at first, but it was admitted into the heart and cherished there. Then it grew until it caused a terrible crime! We learn here, the danger of cherishing even the smallest beginning of bitterness; we do not know to what it will grow! 

Some people think lightly of bad temper, laughing at it as a mere harmless weakness.
But it is a perilous mood to indulge, and we do not know to what it may lead.

“Sin is crouching at your door; it desires to have you!” In His reproof of Cain, the Lord likens his sin to a wild beast lying in hiding by his door, ready to leap on him and devour him. This is true of all sin which is cherished in the heart. It may long lie quiet and seem harmless, but it is only a wild beast sleeping!

There is a story of a man who took a young tiger and resolved to make a pet of it. It moved about his house like a kitten and grew up fond and gentle. For a long time its savage, blood-thirsty nature seemed changed into gentleness, and the creature was quiet and harmless. 

But one day the man was playing with his ‘pet’, when by accident his hand was scratched and the beast tasted blood. That one taste, aroused all the fierce tiger nature, and the ferocious animal flew on his master and tore him to pieces!

So it is, with the passions and lusts of the old nature, which are only petted and tamed and allowed to reside in the heart. They will crouch at the door in treacherous lurking, and in some unguarded hour they will rise up in all their old ferocity! 

It is never safe to make pets of tigers! 

It is never safe to make pets of little sins!

We never know what sin may grow into–if we let it abide in our heart! 

“Cain attacked his brother Abel and killed him!” That is what came of the passion of envy in Cain’s heart! It was left unrebuked, unrepented of, uncrushed–and in time it grew to fearful strength. Then in an evil moment, its tiger nature asserted itself!

We never know to what dreadful stature, a little sin may grow!

 

🙌 Sarah’s New Job At MS Society! 😀

MS Society Logo

Yay…A huge (and very proud) congratulations to my lovely wife Sarah for starting her new job managing the legacy team at MS Society today! 🙌 For all the years i’ve known her, she’s been passionate, enthusiastic, knowledgable, driven, fun, caring, loving and…always looking to overachieve! 😀   Now she has a new job managing a new team, which means she has many more new goals to smash…Go big or go home, lol! 🤣
My Mum & MS (Multiple Sclerosis)…As you may know, my mum died, the same month that I was registered blind, after a 12 year debilitating and demoralising struggle with progressive MS. So you’ll understand why I am so pleased she will be working for this charity, which is close to my heart…and my families hearts too. ❤️
And as would be expected I have already been enlisted to think up some fun ways to raise funds and support MS Society and their wonderful work…. Any ideas for new fundraising challenges would be very welcome……..🤔 

❤️Love At First Sight…Village – 17 Years On!!!

Red Love logo with reflection

 Today i’m celebrating a brobdingnagian 17 years since i met my lovely wife Sarah at “Sight Village, Birmingham, UK” 🙌  

This is a major Sight Village show in Birmingham which is held in July each year. Exhibitors throughout the world take part and welcome many thousands of visitors, including people who are blind or partially sighted, professionals, business people and family members.

I was there (from Derby) working for a charity called LOOK and Sarah was there (from Surrey) working for RNIB. She came to my table as she had a magazine which she had just published an article about LOOK and wanted to show me. Sarah opened the magazine and said here are the pictures and the article, i said “Wow, Mmmm, Awww and fantastic…It all looks great” which made Sarah quite proud of her work. I then said while laughing “you know i didn’t see any of what you’ve just shown me, as i’m blind!”. Then as always, a brief pause as Sarah tries to check out my eyes to see if i’m joking, then Sarah laughed and said “No way, me too!”. We both approach blindness in a similar way and love blossomed from that point. ❤️💪🏼 😀 

Our Photos Throughout The Years….

Sarah  i 2005

 ⇧ 2005 ⇧ 

Sarah  i 2006

Me Sarah  Bruce 2006

 ⇧ 2006 ⇧ 

Sarah  I Wedding photo

 ⇧ 2007 ⇧ 

Me Sarah  Bruce 2009

⇧ 2008 ⇧ 

Sarah  i 2009

⇧ 2009 ⇧   

Valentines heart

 ⇧ 2010 ⇧ 

Steve sarah at friday street1

⇧ 2011 ⇧  

Sarah  i 2012

Me  Sarah in Church

 ⇧ 2012 ⇧  

Sarah  i holding hands 2014

 ⇧ 2013 ⇧ 

Me  Sarah at the river Arno

 ⇧ 2014 ⇧ 

Me on the left in my bright orange shirt hugging Sarah on the right with the beautiful panorama of volcanic hills and blue sea behind us

 ⇧ 2015 ⇧ 

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 ⇧ 2016 ⇧ 

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Me  Sarah

 ⇧ 2017 ⇧ 

Sarah as my Backpack

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 ⇧ 2018 ⇧ 

Sarah & i infront of the yellow 1961 Uniog

1 Me and Sarah gugging at room 112

 ⇧ 2019 ⇧  

1 Sarah snow walk

Me Winners Trophy

 

2020 ⇧ 

1 Sarah Doughnut

Me Engand Shirt

21 ⇧ 

📖 Bible Verse

Ephesians 5:25 Easy-to-Read Version

Husbands, love your wives the same as Christ loved the church and gave his life for it.

🤔 My Thoughts… 

This is one of my favourite Bible verses that i try desperately  each day to live up to. As soon as i first read this verse it convicted me straight away and i knew i wanted to be a husband like that!

🙏 Prayer

Holy Spirit, thanks for being a constant guiding presence in my life. Give me the faith to take practical and radical action to keep in step with You, so that You can love my spouse through me in a way that will sustain a fun, loving & trusting relationship. Amen.

God-pardoned, God-reconciled, Sin-delivered, God-arrayed, Heaven-entitled souls!

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God-pardoned, God-reconciled, Sin-delivered, God-arrayed, Heaven-entitled souls!

(Archibald Brown, “What Christ Has Done for Me!” 1872)  LISTEN to audio!  Download audio

(You will find it helpful to listen to the audio above, as you read the text below.)


“Come and hear, all you who fear God, and I will declare what He has done for my soul!” Psalm 66:16

No one word can fully express all that God has done for my soul, though in general it may be described as savedSaved! Ah, that is a grand word worthy of being written in letters of gold! A saved soul includes many things–I can only mention them:

1. A saved soul is a God-pardoned soul. All its sins are forgiven, and its iniquities are drowned in that deluge of pardoning love that rises high above the topmost peaks of all its mountain sins!

2. A saved soul is a God-reconciled soul. Once at enmity, God and the sinner are now at peace. All differences are at an end. The prodigal sinner has been embraced and kissed by the father. The rebel has thrown down his weapons, and bent his knee to the Monarch–and the Monarch has raised him up, and with a smile of love, has put him among His children. If I may so express it, God and the sinner have met and shaken hands beneath the shadow of the cross! They are at at-one-ment there.

3. A saved soul is also a sin-delivered soul. This is something more than pardon, or reconciliation. It is a higher blessing. Pardon remits the punishment of sin, but leaves the guilt of sin. But justification acquits the person of every charge. Believer, your sins are not merely forgiven–but they are done away with, put out of sight, removed from you as far as the remotest east is from the extreme west! In the eye of God, you are as guiltless as His spotless Son! “You are altogether beautiful, My love; there is no flaw in you!” Song of Songs 4:7 

4. A saved soul is also a God-arrayed soul. This is higher still. The former blessing was a negation of guilt, this is a possession of righteousness. A righteousness, mark you, that is not capable of improvement, but a righteousness that is superlative in its quality–it is the righteousness of God Himself! A saved soul, even to the omniscient eye of Deity, is not only without spot or wrinkle or any such thing–but it is altogether lovely and glorious, robed in the splendor of “Jehovah Tsidkenu”–“The Lord our Righteousness!”

5. A saved soul is a Heaven-entitled soul. This crowns all. Not merely am I delivered from Hell, but in my hand is placed a title-deed to eternal glory! This is no fiction or flight of imagination, but a blessed fact. Possessed by every saint, is a title to Heaven that God Himself will declare to be valid to all eternity. 

Now believer, if all these things are included in what God has done for our souls, then did I not say rightly that many words were necessary to describe the work? Let us then, as God-pardoned, God-reconciled, Sin-delivered, God-arrayed, Heaven-entitled souls–call on all, far and near, to come and listen to our joyous tale.

God looks upon His redeemed people as the masterpieces of His love and power; and He will before assembled worlds exhibit us as the grandest trophies Heaven contains!

❤️ Yay…It’s Our 14th Wedding Anniversary! ❤️ “Sunny Hunny”

1 sarah i wedding day

Hi all! Each time our wedding anniversary comes round, i can’t believe how much our marriage has grown more and more fruitful. Our love keeps blossoming through every season and i thank God for Sarah.! ❤️

Sunny Hunny…☀️ 🙌 

For our 14th wedding anniversary we decided to visit Hunstanton, Norfolk, and stay over for one night in the Golden Lion hotel. This was ‘The Blind Sightseers’ first trip away from home since Jan 2020 so we were ready, lol. 

As you may know Hunstanton is where we had our honeymoon (and then 5 consecutive anniversaries) in the Old Lighthouse, so we were interested to see if anything had changed?! 

After leaving home at 7am we knew it was going to be a long day, especially after a 5 hour journey…A taxi, train, underground train, another train and a bus we arrived at Hunstanton a little past lunchtime! 💪🏼 

NO WAY THE DOUGHNUT VAN IS STILL HERE!!! 

1 Sarah Doughnut

DING…DING…DING…BOOM!!! 😋 

The sound of the ‘Blind Sightseers Gastronomic Leaderboard Bell’ exploded as we quickly devoured the doughnut. 

We managed to get 1 each of the consistently perfect doughnuts…And it was even the same lady who’d served us 14 years ago on our honeymoon! 😲 As we walked up to the van she said “Your usual?” 🤣

After eating the best doughnuts in the world we started our walk around Hunstanton. We only walked about 200 yards when we found??? 🤔 

Willy The Wash Monster L.A.R.C. XV…

This beast is a 1967 Landing and Recovery Craft and is ex USA Army and used in Vietnam. It now gives sea tours in Hunstanton Norfolk and is classed as a ferry…Oh and it’s also powered by 2 Cummins 920 V8 engines! 💪🏼 😀

We had been on this beast years ago and knew it went up to the lighthouse and back…And since we can’t go on a cruise ship, this was the nearest thing, lol.  

1 lighthouse

⇧ View of the lighthouse from the wash monster ⇧  

 The boat ride didn’t disappoint and shortly after we needed to check into the hotel. There was only 1 room left and it was at the rear of the hotel…But the shower was hot and powerful (rips the skin off) so all was well, lol! 🤣

Now i’d dropped off my heavy backpack it was time to explore to see if anything had changed?! No…It was all exactly as it was 14 years ago, the only thing (our fave shop) Surface had closed. This was our place to buy surfer clothes each year…Well i say we, Sarah used to but i was always too big…But i’d lost 5 stone now so was looking forwards to finally buying a top…Oh well, lol! 🤣  

After a long day of walking around the place about 5 times, drinking coffee, eating chips, doughnuts and scones we were sipping a glass of red wine and watching the sun set over Hunstanton.

sunset looking out over the beach and the breakers

The walking…

I have no idea how we managed it as Hunstanton is a very small town…But we’d managed to walk around 10 miles over the afternoon and evening! This was a blessing after what we’d eaten on our mini holiday…Now it’s time to rest after a full day as we only have the morning to go!

The next day…

After a small breakfast we were excited to go for another walk. As it was also early there was hardly anybody else around…And as this walkway is one of my fave places to walk in the world (empty and very wide), it was a good start to the day. 

IMG 3637

 As i was walking up and down on my own unaided and free, it felt fantastic to just pretend i could see where i’m going for a while, lol! 🤣

The funny face???

Not sure what i’d just heard (maybe you could leave me a funny comment with your suggestions) but i just had to give you a comedy moment! 🤣   

IMG 3667

 Ooohhh a helter skelter…

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 More walking… 

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 Wow i think Sarah is going to bless us with one of her stupendous panoramas…

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IMG 6843

 The chips…

DING…DING…DING…BOOM! 😋 

Now these are the best chips anywhere on earth! Seriously i’m not using any hyperbole. It really is a good job i don’t live here as these chips are dangerous! 🤣 

1 Me and chips

 After another coffee and a quick walk around some souvenir shops, it was time to say goodbye to Hunstanton and catch the coast hopper bus. Wow what a ride, time has just flown by on this short 14th wedding anniversary holiday.

Striving to be a Godly husband…

There is no more lovely, friendly or charming relationship, communion or company, than a good marriage. – Martin Luther

I strive daily to love Sarah biblically and extravagantly, but to love her biblically i always first ask “What is God’s love for us like?” 

God’s Word…..

Husbands, you must love your wives so deeply, purely, and sacrificially that we can understand it only when we compare it to the love that Jesus Christ has for His bride, the church..

“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It is not rude, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails…” —1 Corinthians 13:4–8

I thank God for sustaining our marriage in Purity and Truth. And look forwards to more years on this Brobdingnagian adventure!

Sarah & i in Love Heart

#3 What’s Happening To Me? – “Size XXL to a Medium” 😲

Me Engand Shirt

Hi all!

Yay…My early 14th wedding anniversary (post coming on Wednesday) present from my lovely wife Sarah!! I’ve been wearing it for every game so far and it seems to be working lol! 🤣 

 

Size XXL to a Medium… 

 

Since losing 5 stone over this last year, i’ve also gone from a size XXL t-shirt to a size medium. I have never been a medium throughout my whole adult life. I’m loving having to get a new wardrobe and ordering a medium size and it fitting like a glove…Not much beats this feeling! 😀

 

The rose taught me a lesson

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The rose taught me a lesson

(J.R. Miller, “Miller’s Year Book–a Year’s Daily Readings”)  LISTEN to audio!  Download audio

(You will find it helpful to listen to the audio above, as you read the text below.)


“Turn my eyes from looking at what is worthless.” Psalm 119:37 

We must be always turning–if we would keep our life true and according to God’s commandments. 

There are some flowers which always turn toward the sun. There was a little potted rose-bush in a sick-room which I visited. It sat by the window. One day I noticed that the one rose on the bush was looking toward the light. I referred to it, and the sick woman said that her daughter had turned the rose around several times toward the darkness of the room–but that each time the little flower had twisted itself back, until again its face was toward the light. It would not look into the darkness.

The rose taught me a lesson: never to allow myself to look toward any evil, but instantly to turn from it. Not a moment should we permit our eyes to be inclined toward anything sinful. To yield to one moment’s sinful act, is to defile the soul. One of the main messages of the Bible is, “Turn from the wrong, the base, the crude, the unworthy–to the right, the pure, the noble, the godlike!” We should not allow even an unholy thought to stay a moment in our mind–but should turn from its very first suggestion, with face fully toward Christ, the Holy One.

“I will set before my eyes no vile thing!” Psalm 101:3

“Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable–if anything is excellent or praiseworthy, think about such things!”Philippians 4:8

 

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