Radio Leicester Thought for the Day

John Denney 8 May 2003


Another tradition bites the dust.  Bingo at Butlins will never be the same again.  It seems that bingo players at Butlins are getting younger and don’t relate to the old number rhymes.  Out go Tom Mix – number 6, and Danny La Rue – 72.  Jump and jive – 35 has gone, and perhaps saddest of all, “Sweet 16 – never been kissed” will be heard no more.  Perhaps that’s not surprising, given the latest statistics from the 2001 Census.  Only 45% of people are married, compared with 64% 20 years ago.  And a quarter of children live with only one of their parents.  The fact that one in five girls and one in four boys under the age of 16 have had a sexual relationship also show the change that has come about in this country over the last 30 or 40 years.  “Sweet 16” just don’t ring true any more.


What is your reaction to all this?  Is it like the couplet from the hymn:

Change and decay in all around I see:

O Thou, who changest not, abide with me!

Or do you see change as inevitable – necessary, even?  I guess it’s the pace of change that is hardest to bear.  Products change their names at the drop of a hat – where have Spangles, Marathon bars and Jif cleaners gone?  And I’ve lost track over whether it’s Royal Mail, the Post Office, or Consignia.


But change is central to God’s plan for the world – to put things back how they should be.  I've come to change everything, turn everything right side up… said Jesus. [Luke 12:50]  And the change that Jesus was talking about was a complete life-change.  In the historical accounts of the first Easter and its aftermath, we read: that the disciples who had run away and hidden when Jesus was executed had a life-changing experience when they met Jesus, brought back to life.  Their timidity gave way to boldness.  Fear gave way to love.  People who denied knowing Jesus because they feared for their lives became preachers of the gospel, giving birth to the church that has come down to us.  Change isn’t always for the worse.  Sometimes it’s just what we need.


Now, eyes down!

71, J-Lo’s Bum; Number 8, Gareth Gates; 32, Jimmy Choo; 15, Stroppy teen; 73, Camomile Tea, 75, on the skive; 52, Chicken vindaloo …


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