Monday, 10 October 2011

The Swing’s False Impression

Every time our young grandchildren visit they head for the swing set in our yard. Each child enjoys the sensation of being pushed, or being self propelled. There is something relaxing, mesmerising even in going backwards and forwards on a clear sunny day. When grandad wears out or they think of doing something else the swing stops. They get off and the swing becomes still. It hasn’t moved. After all the energy exerted, all the time spent, enjoyable or exhausting though it be, nothing has advanced.

I thought how much of a parable the swing is of so much we do. Whether it is in our personal life, business scene or church work we exert so much energy, maybe enjoy the movement and the moment, but end up getting nowhere. The swing gives the impression to those on it that something is being done, possibly achieved. In reality the person or committee is simply filling in time for no real movement or gain.

I’m glad Jesus didn’t say “come join me on my swing!” Although I have to admit that is the impression often presented by some! The Lord speaks to the heart and says “Come follow me…!” He is on a journey. He has a mission to complete. He has a destination in mind. He has work to achieve and He calls us to join Him in His walk.

To be honest there are times when I would have liked to exchange the stepping out for the swing. It would have been less demanding, costly, or emotionally draining. But then I would never have discovered the grace of our Lord or the depth of His word’s wisdom or the joy of accomplishing the task set before me.

The swing is a great temptation for its false impression of activity. It is an illusion for achieving something. It becomes an even great worry when those on the swing want God to do the pushing. Sorry. He is on the outback track or the city pathway or the suburban side street.

There are many swings set up along the roads of life. They tempt us to stop and have a go. The trouble is too many of us once settled rarely want to get off. Fortunately the Lord doesn’t abandon us to the futile motion of the swing. He calls, warns or even pulls down the swing we are on. Why? So that we might get back on track to follow Him in the task He has set for us.

Anyway, walking is much more beneficial to physical and spiritual health!

Ray(with his walking shoes on) Hawkins

Ray is presenting a workshop on writing devotions at The Word Writers Fair in Queensland on November 12th. There is still time to register for this great weekend for writers.

As well as other great workshop electives to choose on the Saturday, Mary is also presenting a workshop for anyone who is seriously considering writing a novel. See details of the weekend on the website. She  is also one of the mentors for the Friday programme. Of course, the CALEB Award dinner on the Friday evening will be a nail-biting time when the winners - especially for the fiction book award as Mary's Justice at Baragula is a finalist! - are announced.


  1. Great analogy Ray. Swinging is fun, but yeah, I want to go somewhere! Thanks. :)

  2. Good morning Amanda
    Thanks for your comments. Having the heart to go somewhere keeps the feet moving and in the realm of writers keeps the pen (key board)going rather than simply wishing (swinging).