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Turning Round the Corners of the World

We were saying goodbye outside the US Security gate in Terminal 1. My other daughter cautioned my husband not to take any more pictures. We heard the annoyance of one officer arguing with other passengers. Three of them joined in a huddle, their holsters bulging, while my daughters, husband, three young friends and I stood, each waiting to give and receive our hug, and send my younger girl, my grown up baby, through the gates and on to the other side of the world. As I awaited my turn, saved to the last, tears sprang quickly to my eyes, and the first words of Sydney Carter's song leapt into my consciousness:

"One more step along the world I go"

I whispered to my daughter of this special confirmation, and that I would write more about it to her, as it felt such an affirmation of God's seal of approval on this mighty new embarkation: a high school graduate on her way to a half year at Bible school "down under", the furthest point we could choose from home to send her, yet somewhere that felt so safe and sure and full of promise and hope, a place to consolidate her sure foundation in Christ, and prepare her for her life journey.

We had sent our older daughter to a linked Bible school in a castle in Britain two years before, and the growth and learning and friendships that came out of her time led to many creative and important decisions. She is soon to leave us for her university studies, now chosen with confidence and excitement, her connections with a vital local church there already made.

How wonderfully my prayers have been answered. And why should I have doubted my Lord? He has seen me through so many journeys and brought me safely home again, always home to Him, who watches over me as the apple of His eye. How could I ever doubt that He would do anything less for my children?

One more step along the world I go,
One more step along the world I go,
From the old things to the new
Keep me travelling along with you.
And it's from the old I travel to the new,
Keep me travelling along with you.

Round the corners of the world I turn,
More and more about the world I learn.
And the new things that I see
You'll be looking at along with me.

As I travel through the bad and good
Keep me travelling the way I should.
Where I see no way to go
You'll be telling me the way, I know.

Give me courage when the world is rough,
Keep me loving when the world is tough.
Leap and sing in all I do,
Keep me travelling along with you.

Sydney Carter
author of Lord of the Dance

Such a simple song,yet so profound,embedded in my heart from early days of worship leading in the seventies, days of my own exploration and launching out, risking and wondering.

I look back and see that all that I sang about, all that the words say for all of us, have come true. He has indeed looked at everything "along with me". He has indeed given me courage, made me loving, and even able to "leap and sing in all I do" when the world has been tough and rough. I could truly take this song as a signature tune for my life.

So now, I sing it for my daughters as they turn round the corners of the world, and as I move forward into a season without them close by. I need to pray, as profoundly as ever before, for myself as well,

And it's from the old I travel to the new,
Keep me travelling along with you.

Psalm 121: 7-8

The Lord will keep you from all harm -
he will watch over your life;
the Lord will watch over your coming and going
both now and forevermore.
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