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Spirit of the Flame - 70 days following the Olympic Torch

DAY 60

Day 60:
Today, the Olympic Torch ended its day in Hastings. Famous for the battle on 14 October 1066, it is imaginatively known as "the battle of Hastings".

On that day in history, the Normans, under Duke William II of Normandy, beat the English, lead by King Harold II. It is notable because it is the last time England was defeated on its own soil by an invading country. And consequently, as the Normans spoke French, within time French words started slipping into the English language.

Duke William II of Normandy was crowned King of England on Christmas Day 1066.

It would be a quick link for me to now talk about a spiritual battle that has been going on since mankind was put on this earth. So why not?

My life goes through times when it feels like things are going against me. That there is a battle going on. A Pastor is not exempt from temptations and afflictions! I am very much aware of the spiritual battle going on to pull me away from my time with and faith in God. And it is easy to feel defeated by other decisions that have to be made.

1 Samuel 17:47 (NIV)
"All those gathered here will know that it is not by sword or spear that the Lord saves; for the battle is the Lord’s, and he will give all of you into our hands."

David was a young man, short, but full of the boldness of his faith in God. In front of his brothers, the Israelite army, and King Saul, who stood head and shoulders above all the other Israelites (but that's another lesson!), David taunted the taunter, and he taunted the taunters battle strong warriors.

David's message was simple; it matters not what the threat is, the battle belongs to God. He will give me the victory.

What a wonderful outcome of putting your faith in God. God will give you victory in your battles. If that is the criterion, and the outcome, what have you done to maintain your faith in God today? How are your facing your battles? Have you spent time enough with God so you can face every battle with confidence?

David still had to face his giant, but God promised the victory. And I believe God offers the same victory to everyone today. The good thing is, you don't have to learn French to be on the winning side!

-Pr Nathan Stickland
www.adventistyouth.org.uk

DAY 59

Fabric conditioner! What kind do I buy? I stood in the aisle this evening doing my mental arithmetic working out which one was the best price. Which one was on promotion. The most litres I could get for the fewest pounds spent. What kind do I buy? The cheapest branded kind!

DAY 58

Have you ever done something you haven't tried for years? I went roller-skating this evening. I was never too good, or confident, at roller-skating when I was a teenager. Ice-skating was the more regular mode of wrestling with gravity. And I wasn't much good at that either...

DAY 57

Hill View.

Today the Olympic torch went from Bournemouth to Southampton, via the Isle of Wight. Yesterday I mentioned about kids aged 6-8 years old, and I must have been about that age when I lived in Bournemouth. It's where my youngest brother was born. It's where I saw the QE II sail past Hengistbury Head, near Bournemouth, as part of the Queen's Silver Jubilee, with the Queen on board apparently; though at half a mile out from shore I have to take their word for it! And it is where I went to Hill View Infants School...

DAY 56

I've had a childish afternoon and evening...

DAY 55

I noticed a sign today announcing a road closure on a given date due to the Olympic Torch route. It is almost two weeks notice. A big yellow sign purposefully placed in a prominent public position. (A lot of P words in that sentence! Would have been funny if it was a petite purple sign.)

DAY 54

The Olympic Torch toured from Reading to Salisbury today. Nearing Stonehenge, but not going there today. It will go there tomorrow. Possibly the oldest object the torch went near today was Salisbury cathedral... 

DAY 53

Today the Olympic Torch finished up in a rainy Madejski Stadium, home of Reading Football Club. Oh, how I would love to have been there. My family have various connections with this town in Royal Berkshire...

DAY 52

Just after midday today the Olympic Torch spent time at the Stoke Mandeville Stadium, near the Stoke Mandeville Hospital, the claimed birthplace of the Paralympic Games... 

DAY 51

Hundreds, maybe thousands, watched at Wimbledon today to see if Andy Murray could win the men's final. And I went to Saint Albans to see the Olympic Torch Relay today...