A story read at the White Eagle Family Service on March 4th 2018, written by Jenny Bateman

It was early morning when Kit awoke. He knew it was early because he couldn’t hear any noise except the birds, all singing different songs with great enthusiasm. Kit smiled in contentment. You didn’t hear them like that in the winter, it was when the spring came that they sounded so joyful. Kit was happy too now he had the whole of spring and summer to look forward to. It was just light and, as Kit pulled back the curtains, the golden disc of the sun was already climbing up the sky. He was excited as he had arranged to go walking with his friend, Mark, up on the moors, his absolutely favourite place to go. He washed and dressed quickly, putting on his thick walking boots, and then went downstairs to help himself to some breakfast just as his mother appeared.

‘You’re an early bird!’ she laughed.

‘Yeah!’ he responded. ‘We’re going up to explore Black Crag Hill today. Do you remember, we’ve seen it sometimes from the car, that huge rocky place high up on the moors. You must be able to see for miles from up there.’

‘Well, have a lovely day with Mark. Have you got your sandwiches?’

‘Oh yes’ replied Kit, ‘and a map too. We’ve never been as far as that before so we’re not quite sure how to get there.’

He called for Mark and together the two boys set off. Very soon they left the little village behind, at first using tracks that they knew well. However, as they explored deeper, climbing all the time, the paths and tracks became unfamiliar and much of it was just open moorland. It was beautiful wild country with many sheep grazing on the new spring growth of grass. There was masses of heather which, later in the year, they knew would form a stunning purple carpet stretching out away into the distance. A couple of times they heard the beautiful song of a curlew as it flew overhead, easy to recognise with its long distinctive beak.

The morning passed quickly and eventually they came to the gigantic ridge of rocks known as Black Crag Hill. It was quite a climb up to the top and, as Kit had imagined, they could see the glorious moorland spread out for miles in every direction. They even thought they could see their own village in the distance but couldn’t be sure, as it looked very different from so high up. They sat on a large flat slab of rock, already warmed by the sun, and ate their lunch admiring the view all around them.

One or two clouds were creeping slowly across the sky and for several moments the sun disappeared. Then a wonderful thing happened. The rays from the sun pierced the clouds and they could see streams of light coming right down to the earth.

‘Look at that!’ exclaimed Mark.

They both fell silent, fascinated by what they were seeing. Then there seemed to be a great stillness all around as if time itself had stopped. And, as they watched, they saw that the rays of the sun were made up of beautiful colours, all moving and almost dancing. It was as though there were beings of light bringing the beautiful rays to the earth in a kaleidoscope of glorious colour. Every part of the earth was being touched and both the boys were suddenly aware that these beings of sunlight were stimulating the new growth everywhere on the earth. They were penetrating the buds on the trees, helping the tiny new leaves to burst out; they were warming the earth itself bringing the spring flowers into bloom; they were waking up the tiny creatures which had hibernated through the dark, cold winter. The birds had already had felt the touch of these sun-rays and Kit remembered noticing how joyfully they were singing that morning, knowing that, at last, the spring was here.

They were suddenly aware too that tiny beings of light, already on and in the earth were responding to these sun-ray beings and that all were working together in harmony.

The boys felt as though they were balanced between two worlds, one the everyday world of moorland and rocks and the other a world of beautiful light and colour which somehow interpenetrated and was a part of everything. It brought to them a feeling of such happiness and contentment, an inner knowing that, whatever happened in their lives, this other world which they had been privileged to glimpse, was always there. A realisation came too that a magical ray of light from that glorious sun enfolded each of them as it did every other person in the world. No-one was left out; everything and everyone was enfolded in this light and this light was God.

Kit went to church with his parents but it seemed to be a bit of a bore when he so much wanted to be outside. But now he knew that you didn’t have to be in a church, that God was everywhere, in everything and he, Kit, a boy from a tiny village in the middle of the moors, was actually part of God too. It was a strange but wonderful thought.

Suddenly, the clouds disappeared, the sun shone down again and the ‘other world’, which had been so real, vanished. However, the feeling of it didn’t go away and both the boys knew in their individual ways that something very special had happened to them which they would never forget.

‘Did you have a nice day?’ asked his mother when Kit eventually arrived home, his boots covered in mud and ravenously hungry despite the large pack of sandwiches he’d consumed earlier.

‘Oh yes’ replied Kit ‘a really wonderful day!