Showing posts from February, 2014

Sochi stirrings & Archibald the Arctic

I've been enjoying the thrill of the Winter Olympics in Sochi along with millions of others around the world. It's stunning though to realise that it's warmer there than the average summer beach holiday in England! Whatever the accomplishments of these winter heroes, their exploits have reminded me of a true winter hero of the faith who has never been decorated with victors medals. I've written and spoken on him at length before, but the opportunity to honour him again is too great to miss.

Archibald Lang Fleming arrived amongst the Eskimos as a missionary in 1909. Ok, he was a hardy Scot from Clydebank, but nothing can have prepared him for the extremes of this kind of living. Remember,these were the days of Empire, when British explorer types set off up a mountain or into the Amazon armed only with a machette, a tweed jacket and a fine handlebar moustache!

Fleming needed more than a tweed jacket as he joined a people group who had maintained their existence for gener…

The protective place of prayer

Driving to the office this morning, along a rural country lane towards the town, a family of deer chose their moment to leap through the hedgerow and cross the road in front of the car. The first three made it, then the smaller deer skidded and swerved to a stop by the side of the road as I did likewise in the car! There was no collision, and all six deer hurried on their way, our admiring glances at their beauty and poise lost on them as they disappeared into the opposite foliage.

When we come to prayer, we have many purposes and motives in mind. Breakthrough, healing, momentum. All good and rightly sought after. However, the encounter with the deer reminded me of a comment by E M Bounds, which emphasises the place of protection and comfort in our prayer.

Bounds tells this story in his book, The Necessity of Prayer:
'Rising early one morning I heard the barking of a number of dogs chasing deer. Looking at a large open field in front of me, I saw a young fawn making it's way ac…