I just looked back. A year ago today I wrote about this old ‘Two Ronnies’ sketch.
Ronnie Corbett arrives at Ronnie Barker’s house with a bird in a cage. The man down the pub had sold him an ‘Argentinian racing-pigeon.’ The gullible Corbett believed him. Barker can see that this bird is no racing-pigeon – it’s a duck! Eventually, after arguing for several minutes, Corbett accepts ‘It’s a duck!’
If it looks like a duck, swims like a duck, quacks like a duck then it’s a duck.
Sometimes we must face our world as it is… not as we wish it was or how would like it to be.
I look at friends having to face up to big, tough stuff in their lives – cancer, long-covid, hospitalisation, bereavement, apparently insoluble family problems. It’s too easy for me to say ‘face up to your world’.
I look at my life. I like to think that I’m the Argentinian racing pigeon… I’ve won races; I’m a champion! In the end I can’t ignore, cover over, or disguise the fact: I’m a fake racing-pigeon. I’m a quacking, flat-footed duck.
I’m continuing to enjoy reading Nadia Bolz-Weber. Former stand-up comic, now Lutheran pastor she’s incredibly honest about her feelings and failures… being a disappointment to herself, others and her God…
She writes about Jesus feeding the 5000. Jesus asks his disciples what they have to feed the people; they say ‘nothing’:
‘The disciples…forgot that they have a God who created the universe out of “nothing”, that can put flesh on dry bones “nothing”,….let’s face it “nothing” is God’s favourite material to work with. Perhaps God looks upon that which we dismiss as nothing, insignificant, and worthless and says, “Ha! Now that I can do something with.”’
I return to my life. I see ‘It’s a duck’; I think it’s ‘nothing, insignificant and worthless’.
My God likes my nothing-duck. He says it’s OK. ‘Ha! Now that I can do something with.’