This truly is a meadow in an old fashioned sense; rarely seen these days with clover and harebells et al. Although rarely seen, I am treated to this view of beauty from my kitchen door. Today it was therapeutic ‘marmite for my soul’ as I pulled ragwort from the grass by the door. Insects filled the field with sound. They were surprisingly loud.
I was soon accompanied by two herds of peaceful beasts who came to see what I was up to. One herd, curious but also comforting, wanted to be with me and it wasn’t long before they started dozing by the door.
The other herd were a bit skittish as the black and white spotty dog decided to try his paw at being a collie but thought rounding-up meant scatter. The dozy ones brought me peace, as did the meadow and the verse that came to my mind in a moment of prayer, today.
John 14:1 “Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God; believe also in me.”
I had been troubled and while there seems to be a lot out there to trouble us, my troubles were fairly trivial. Remembering to believe and trust in Jesus was all I needed to refresh my hope and re-right my focus again. Sometimes troubled hearts engulf us and are so overwhelming, it’s like being in the belly of a whale with no way out. My worries were not so, though. They were small and simply around how I think my book might be received and if anyone (who doesn’t know me) will be interested enough to want to read it. They might have been troubled thoughts but they injected a good dose of realism into me, as did this conversation I had yesterday.
“Hey! Rich Tea Boy (aged 14) would you write a quick review for my book?”
“Sure Mum. Do you want me to do it now?”
“Yes please. You don’t have to write much.”
Two minutes later…
“I can’t think of the word I’m looking for.”
“Do you want a thesaurus?”
“Yes, please” He looks in the thesaurus, “Ah tranquil. That’s it.”
He finishes writing and says to me, “You do realise some people are not going to enjoy it, don’t you? Especially if they like a fast-paced, action packed read.”
“Yes, son! I realise that. I think of it being like ‘marmite for the soul’. People will either love it or hate it.”
Pulling ragwort, today, I was remembering this conversation and with the comfort of the ponies standing by, the warm sun on my back, the beauty and insect song of the meadow beside me I wondered. I wondered if perhaps in the troubles of today our youngsters might appreciate a tranquil read, like a meadow to lose themselves in. I wondered if they might like something that reads peacefully without grit and gore and helps them escape to words of safety and hope. I wondered if they might like something that is gentle. I wondered if they needed comfort like the unassuming acceptance of a pony. I wondered if it would be like a balm or simply ‘marmite for the soul’. They will either love it or hate it! But do they need it?