Thought for the Week, by Tony Kendall, October 9

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Space exploration has always fascinated me. Our world has been well and truly explored, and the next great frontier is the universe. So I was excited to hear Buzz Aldrin, the second man to walk on the moon in 1969, predict that humans will land on Mars by 2020 and colonise it 20 years later. What a prospect - scary but sensational!

The concept of living in endless physical space set me thinking about the contrast with our lives on earth today. When the digital age started to change society 50 years ago, it was thought we would all enjoy more personal ‘space’ in which to think, read, reflect, take stock and pray. There would be much less paperwork, less time spent on routine matters which could be done by computers and more opportunities for creativity.

But, in my experience anyway, this hasn’t come about.There seems to be less ‘spare time’ than ever before. Is this just part of growing older and knowing that our days are numbered? Is it the result of too much TV or the explosion in digital technology? In public it seems that personal conversation has been largely replaced by the need to fill every moment in using iphones for texting, emailing, accessing social media or using Google to find an immediate answer to everything.

How do we begin to restore more space into everyday life? Christians believe that God our creator became a man 2000 years ago in the person of Jesus Christ to show us what he is really like - a god of compassion and forgiveness. During his intensive 3 year ministry, followed by crowds inspired by his teaching but opposed by religious leaders who valued legalism and ritual above the need for love, Jesus found space to communicate with his heavenly father by withdrawing to lonely places to listen and pray for strength and guidance to do his will.

When things are getting on top of us and we don’t know where to turn for comfort or direction, putting aside as little as 10 minutes a day, whether at home or on the move, to place our concerns into the hands of God and thank him for his many blessings can work wonders in improving our whole outlook on life. In rugby terms, it’s well worth a try!