“If we are calibrated to the wrong source, then every measurement is wrong”.

We agree that we need to help our young people to understand the world in which they live; they also need to understand history and the great future hope.

Simply giving our own subjective opinion is not helpful or valid; we need to be informed by something that is reliable and true. If there is no yardstick, some reference point, for our understanding and interpretation of things, then we cannot expect to approach accuracy, clarity or truth.

I have shared this story in a previous series; but it’s worth repeating. There is an old tale told about an owner of a clock shop in Manchester, England. The owner lived above the shop, and each morning, when he looked out of his bedroom window, he would notice the same person stop outside his shop. Eventually, the intrigued shop-owner decided to investigate. Early one Monday morning he exited his shop and asked the person why he stopped each morning at the same time.

“I have a very responsible job”, answered the man, “I have to set my pocket-watch by the large clock in your window, because each day I have the task of blowing the factory whistle on time to show the start and finish times of the work day.” The owner laughed. “All this time I’ve been setting the clock in my shop window clock by your factory whistle.”

Relativity does not give us accuracy. If we are calibrated to the wrong source, then every measurement is wrong.

If you visited a market in 12th Century England, it is likely you would find the market stalls selling cloth, were staffed by small and thin people. Why? Because the measurement of “one yard” was originally the length of a man’s belt! The smaller the seller, the smaller the amount of cloth.

To try to deal with the wide variations caused by this practice King Henry I of England fixed the yard as the distance from his nose to the thumb of his out-stretched arm. The problem, of course, was that King Henry was not present at every market.

It took the passing of a few more royal rulers, until Richard 1 declared a standard “yard” measurement and provided a metal rod to every market place in England so that the measurement was standardised. The birth of the “yardstick”.

Calibration to the right source is critically important. Thus, it is vital for us to clearly see the God of the Bible.

How are we doing this in our communities?


Back to Care Conversations