Steely resolve

In the run-up to making our planning application on Solar House we have been in protracted discussions with the planners at Barnet. At our initial meeting, they made quite a few suggestions as to what would be acceptable and what we would need to modify. We took these recommendations very seriously and modified our plans accordingly. Then we went back for a second meeting. At the actual meeting, with the new plans laid out, it appeared that the planners didn't have further objections. But the meeting is followed up with a formal report and that turned out to be quite another matter. It reminded me a bit of when Paul said "For some say, 'His letters are weighty and forceful, but in person he is unimpressive and his speaking amounts to nothing.'" (2 Corinthians 10:10). The demanding written report usurped the previous more relaxed face to face meeting. So now, when we had thought we were almost there, a new critique of our plans that plunges in all sorts of previously untackled details need to be urgently addressed.

Today has been a great day for British sport, with Andy Murray winning the men's singles at Wimbledon and Lewis Hamilton winning the British Grand Prix at Silverstone. What these two sporting superstars have in common is a ruthless determination to win, which by contrast was so absent in the lacklustre English football team. Gone was the renowned British reserve, so commonly embodied by our heroic failures of late. This new breed of champion are characterised by tireless and fearless grit. Great champions are rarely nice.

Often Christians lack that killer instinct of a worldly winner, wanting to espouse gentleness, love and kindness and other fruit of the Spirit that make us like Jesus. However, we may need to have a bit more of that steely resolve, which we see in great sporting champions, if we are to achieve Go and Grow success. "Who is it that wins the victory? Only the one who believes" (1 John 5:5 abridged)

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