weeks was written by AWR's English Language Service Director,
Victor Hulbert. The full programme can be heard
in Real Audio on our web-site.
out of a plane?
For a rough translation in
your own language click here:
evening was eerily quiet.I
was out, taking my dog for his evening stroll around our estate and
the local park – and I did not meet a single person.I past McDonalds – usually busy at that time on a Sunday –
but there wasn’t a single car in the drive through.My student son, working inside, was very bored.
reason: 20.7 million Britain’s were staring at their TV screens,
cheering as England scored their first goal in Euro 2004 – then
groaning as they lost 2:1 to France in the final moments.
guessed – from my dog walking – that I’m not a close follower of
football – so I wasn’t distressed when our French engineer wore
his countries shirt to work Monday morning – nor did I need the
grief counselling being offered, tongue in cheek, by a Croatian friend
who called by the office.At
least his national team held of Switzerland to a goalless
you pushed me, I’d probably tell you I’m supporting Portugal.I have this deal with my Portuguese mother-in-law.She always supports England.I always support Portugal.It keeps things neat, tidy and balanced.
the choice though, I’d probably be outside doing something more
interesting then watching men kick a ball around a field. Which is why
the story that caught my attention Monday morning was not on the
sports pages, but rather, at least in the British press, tucked away
around page 5: former president George Bush senior, on his 80th
birthday, taking a tumble out of an airplane and having a go at sky
diving.There’s not too
many 80 year olds do that for the first time – but there have, over
the last several weeks, been a number of stories of older people doing
year old Fauja Singh set a course record for his age group at the London Marathon.Meanwhile, so I am told, a retired lady is taking on new life
hiking across Russia.Nor does it need to be amazing stuff.Since my dad died back last October my 81 year old mother has
decided to take up computer classes.I met another lady a few weeks ago.She’s had a hip replacement, walks with a crutch, has
recently lost her husband whom she had nursed through several years of
debilitating illness – but who was in the middle of organising a
family camp on a remote farm.Tremendous.
much that we can achieve when we set our minds to it – and if we
believe the health experts – people are increasingly living for
longer, so we both need to admire those who are moving on past the 70
mark, and allow them the space to run their lives with dignity and
of those roles is, perhaps, pointed out in the lead article of
an article entitled, “Sad Planet”, it points out that depression
has become a global disease afflicting some 150 million people from
poor villages in rural Africa to the richest of
results include lost days at work, increased suicide risk, alcohol and
drug abuse – or increased unprotected sex leading to illnesses such
as AIDS – and a vicious circle is started.
how to get out of the loop.Newsweek’s
Tara Pepper and Jaime Cunningham suggest that “Talk Therapy” and
particularly Cognitive Behavioural Therapy can be of benefit.And it’s a kind of therapy that is easy to learn and to share
– pilot projects in Uganda have been
a Western concept it seems to adapt well to Asian, Middle Eastern and
African cultures.But the
underlying principle is one that is as old as time.We need people that can listen, that can reflect with us, that
can help guide us out of a dark cave of emotional insecurity or lost
purpose, onto a road that gives meaning.
what Jesus did with a woman, despised by her own neighbours, that he
met by a well in Samaria, and offered her
hope (John 4).He did the
same with Peter (John 21), following his devastating denial of Jesus
at his trial.Weeks later,
by Galilee, Jesus takes time
to talk and listen to Peter – challenges Peter to love and to follow
him.Challenges him to
focus on the future.The
apostle Paul had his moments of depression.He also had some wise council.
not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and
petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.
great – for we have a God who listens – and who cares.But he took it a stage further – a stage that gives a
particular role for older people – but for the rest of us as well.
we urge you, brothers, . . .encourage
the timid, help the weak, be patient with everyone.
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