OK so I finally managed to carve out a little bit of time to start work on this new book which I’ve been asked to write, A Beautiful Day. I’ve literally just finished the introduction and so I thought I’d post it up here on the blog to gauge your opinions. I might do the same with each chapter (publisher permitting) Just to give you a heads-up, it’s an evangelistic book that will be short (20,000 words or so) and that will appeal to the unchurched/non-bothered, especially blokes in the 18-30 age bracket. (Think bloke down the pub who you’ve had a good chat about God with and you want to give him something to read before you go. ) It’s based on the story of the lame beggar in Acts 3.
I’m not easily offended so please feel free to comment critically and honestly – so long as love is your motive I’ll welcome all feedback.
Thanks and God bless.
(PS – the picture obviously won’t appear in the book – it’s just there to beautify the blog slightly!!)
Poor old Humpty Dumpty.
There he was just chilling on his wall, minding his own business when in one life-shattering moment the little eggy fella fell!
Did he jump or was he pushed? We’ll probably never know! However, it matters little as either way the consequences were severe! Blue lights flashed and sirens wailed as all the king’s horses and all the king’s men rushed to the scene, but it was to no avail. Humpty lay in a shattered heap on the floor – completely shell-shocked. Despite the best efforts of the emergency response team, they couldn’t put him back together again. He was just too messed up.
Humpty was broken for life!
While the story of Humpty Dumpty’s tragic fall from grace is purely fictitious (and slightly comical) I can’t help but feel that for many of us, we have more in common with Humpty than we’d like to admit. Now I’m not saying that we’re all a bunch of wall-warming egg-heads. That would just be weird. Rather what I’m suggesting is that just like Humpty we’re fragile. While our wall and the nature of our fall may vary, the truth is that to some degree or other we have all made a mess of our lives.
- The bloke who seems to have it all, yet is torn apart by shame and self-hatred born out of a savage addiction to illicit sex and internet porn.
- The girl who whose life is a relational train-wreck as she recklessly pursues the love and security that she never knew, yet so deeply craves.
- The young thug for whom a clenched fist is the only sure-fire ways to earn respect and make himself heard.
- The student who is paralysed by fear and anxiety as she constantly strives and fails to attain the unreasonable standards set by over-bearing parents.
The reality is that we are all broken people.
If we’re being brutally honest, we must surely acknowledge that things in our lives aren’t as they should be and that each of us has a deep-down longing for things to be put right. We need fixing and we know it. But just like poor old Humpty, no matter how hard we or other people try, the pieces just won’t fit back together.
We’re damaged goods!
So what hope is there for us? If we’re looking to Humpty Dumpty for insight into our fractured world then surely the end of the story is quite depressing for all of us – cos he was a mashed-up omelette on the floor and that how he stayed! Don’t worry though, because we’re going to leave Humpty Dumpty alone now and turn our attention to another story – one that I believe offers genuine hope and encouragement to fragile, broken people.
People like you and me.
Unlike Humpty’s tale, this is a true story about a real man, who really lived and who really did experience the kind of radical, life-changing transformation that we all so desperately need. His story is found in the Bible and the rest of this book is simply going to consider exactly what happened to this man, and celebrate the amazing truth that there is a God who is more than able to put a bunch of busted-up Humpty’s like us back together again.
Here’s how the story goes:
“Now Peter and John were going up to the temple at the hour of prayer, the ninth hour. And a man lame from birth was being carried, whom they laid daily at the gate of the temple that is called the Beautiful Gate to ask alms of those entering the temple. Seeing Peter and John about to go into the temple, he asked to receive alms. And Peter directed his gaze at him, as did John, and said, “Look at us.” And he fixed his attention on them, expecting to receive something from them. But Peter said, “I have no silver and gold, but what I do have I give to you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk!” And he took him by the right hand and raised him up, and immediately his feet and ankles were made strong. And leaping up he stood and began to walk, and entered the temple with them, walking and leaping and praising God. And all the people saw him walking and praising God, and recognized him as the one who sat at the Beautiful Gate of the temple, asking for alms. And they were filled with wonder and amazement at what had happened to him.”