Faith at Work XLII

January 2008

I was talking the other day to people on the shop floor about the value of seeing the parts that they make in position within a finished product.  They are involved in fabricating chassis components that are vital for vehicle strength and integrity, but which are only usually seen during the assembly of the vehicle.  So a proposed site visit to an assembly plant has been greeted with a good deal of enthusiasm – they’ll see their products become an important part of a much bigger whole and they’ll think “we made that” with some degree of satisfaction and a sense that they are valued within the greater scheme of things.

It struck me that most of us are only engaged in a small part of something much larger and sometimes we yearn to catch a glimpse of the bigger picture. However much our effort is put into playing our part as well as is possible, it is affirming to know that the quality of the whole depends not least on our own contribution and it can be demoralising when that is not acknowledged.  I wonder how many of the products made in the Black Country over the last century or so have suffered from the same condition.  There’s nothing particularly glamorous about screws or locks or chains but they can play a very important part in what they are used for; miss one out and things soon fall apart.

It has been good to see the Black Country feature recently in its quest for Big Lottery funding – it played a major part in the beginning of the Industrial Revolution that changed the world forever as Toyah Willcox explained last month … and the exciting changes planned to rejuvenate the area will inject new life into a place that has already earned its place in the history books.  Now we are being asked to “see it in colour” and the 30-year plan to put the Black Country on the map includes making it greener, putting the canal system back to full working order and developing the Wren’s Nest underground caverns.  Exciting times ahead.

Another event that changed the world forever was the birth of Jesus Christ 2000 years ago ... and though he came as a Jew, he too was part of a much bigger picture.  We remember Him at Epiphany because at that time he was shown to the Gentiles as well and visited by the Wise Men who came from the East to worship him – that was their way of recognising the Light that had come into the world.  We need to find our way too, so let us pray, with Yvonne Morland:

God of many names revealed and hidden,
we welcome you in our midst.
Bring to our lives the oil of justice,
the lamp of truth.
Walk beside us in our darkness so that,
in You, we will not fail.

This site was developed to contain work by Mike Fox relating to the WMMTC course
and subsequent experience during ministry in the parish of Codsall and the BCUIM.
This page was last updated on 2007-11-26

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