Prayer for the Day – Script 2

This is what I said on Radio 4 at 0543 this morning:

Good morning.

Today is the anniversary of the birth of AA Milne. That makes it the birthday of Winnie the Pooh as well.

Later on today, I’ll be marking this as Winnie the Pooh Day. I’ll pour myself a cup of tea and reach for a dusty and slightly battered copy of the House at Pooh Corner. The pages are yellowing now and some are in danger of dropping out and scattering all over the floor. Those of course are the best loved pages – the ones I’ll want to read most. Pages that remind me that tiggers don’t climb trees and that breakfast is best if it begins and ends with a honey pot.

I’ll also cast a glance in the direction of my own bear. He is looking slightly battered by the passage of time too. But there he sits on a high shelf and looks down at me on many a day when I forget that he is there.

It is a strange custom, making models of bears and giving them to children for comfort. The wildest and most dangerous animals of the forest being given in love. They provide comfort and security and offer small hands something to grasp hold of.

All the best bears are given with love, tenderness and delight. Gifts given like that remind us of all that is good about being human.

If Pooh and Piglet, Eeyore and Kanga and all the rest remind us of that, then Pooh Bear’s birthday is definitely worth celebrating.

Somewhere in an “enchanted place on the top of the Forest a little boy and his Bear will always be playing” And in some enchanted place deep with us, we all need to know that we are already loved.

Loving God,
hold us and comfort us though all that this day brings.
Help us to find enchanted places
and people to love. Amen.

You can hear it on the iPlayer for 7 days.

Comments

  1. So lovely and gentle. Oddly enough, not the first time I’ve heard a short address/thought on Winnie the Pooh! I once heard a preacher give a sermon from the following text:

    “They walked on, thinking of This and That, and by-and-by they came to an enchanted place on the very top of the forest called Galleons Lap, which is sixty-something trees in a circle. Being enchanted, its floor was not like the floor of the forest, gorse and bracken and heather, but close-set grass, quiet and smooth and green. Sitting there they could see the whole world spread out until it reached the sky, and whatever there was all the world over was with them in Galleons Lap.
    Then Christopher Robin, who was looking at the world with his chin in his hands, called out, ‘Pooh!’
    ‘Yes?’ said Pooh.
    ‘When I’m…when…Pooh!’
    Pooh waited for him to go on, but he was silent again.
    ‘Yes, Christopher Robin?’ said Pooh helpfully.
    ‘Pooh, when I’m…you know…will you come up here sometimes?’
    ‘Just me?’
    ‘Yes, Pooh.’
    ‘Will you be here too?’
    ‘Yes, Pooh, I will be really. I promise I will be, Pooh.’
    ‘That’s good,’ said Pooh.
    Still with his eyes on the world, Christopher Robin put out a hand and felt for Pooh’s paw. ‘Pooh, whatever happens, you will understand, won’t you?’
    ‘Understand what?’
    ‘Oh, nothing.’ He laughed and jumped to his feet. ‘Come on!’
    ‘Where?’ said Pooh.
    ‘Anywhere,’ said Christopher Robin.”

  2. Zebadee says:

    Cal The sermon is in the reading. I am deeply affected by this quotation and have been for many years. Theology/doctrine ‘go out of the window’. This is the wonderful world of mysticism and relationship. What more do we need other than to enter in. As Jesus said ” Unless you become as a little child—–“

  3. Elizabeth says:

    I love this! Thank God for Winnie-ther-Pooh and the Enchanted Place!

  4. Ruth Gillett says:

    how lovely to see this again! Thanks for posting it – a comforting memory for me. My mum & I listened to it together that morning and it’s a lasting happy reminder of all the moments we shared and enjoyed prior to her having a stroke in March that year. And it was one of the memories I called upon to try to help rebuild her ‘connections’ in her remaining years.

  5. The Rev Sr Helena Barrett, OSB says:

    Among my earliest memories is my parents reading me the Pooh books, and I’ve almost always been accompanied by a bear or two, most of whom have gone to bear heaven from having been loved literally to pieces or given up before entering the convent. Christmas Day a year ago I said Mass at a tiny village church and the congregation numbered 26 adults, one small girl, and her bear. This year she came decked out as a Disney princess (but with light-up reindeer antlers instead of a tiara), but if she feels too grown up to bring her bear to church, I pray that she hasn’t discarded him or her. Perhaps one day when she is old enough to hug her bear close again she will know that her little grey bear has been praying for her all the time whether in church or not.

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