Be proud of your country unconditionally

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The past couple of weeks have seen England somewhat hysterical over the World Cup. Quite rightly the country has been willing on its national football team to achieve the best it can. I would have liked to have seen England win that treasured trophy. However, I ask myself why doesn´t the country get so frenzied about its cricket team, rugby team or tennis players at Wimbledon? Yes, fans of cricket, rugby & tennis will get excited at their various tournaments yet for the World Cup the countries joy goes into overtime!

Someone on Twitter said that it was because if England won the World Cup it would give the English pride in their country & hope. Can´t we get that same pride from our cricket, rugby & tennis players? What hope would winning the World Cup have given the country?

OK, I´ll grant you that if we´d won the World Cup we´d all have felt proud to be English. How long for though? Weeks? A few months? Then what? Normality!!

Shouldn´t we be proud of England & to be English anyway? Yes, the country has a myriad of problems – crime, arguments over Brexit & immigration, cutbacks within the NHS & policing etc, However there is a lot of great things about the country that we can be proud of. I wonder if it´s just that the English like to moan & complain. Both my Twitter & Facebook feeds are mostly moans about this, that & the other. They are mostly depressing reads. There are very few positive posts.

Winning the World Cup would only have given the country that feel good factor for a while. At the end of the day it´s down to society to give that feel good factor back to society. Many will be saying at this point ¨I can´t change society on my own, I can´t make it better on my own.¨ True – no one can do it singlehandedly but if we all do our own little bit on a regular basis then the world will become a better place. Giving doesn´t have to be a response to a need, although that is a good thing to do & much appreciated. Giving for no apparent reason is equally appreciated & gives the beneficiary the thrill of a surprise. Why give to someone who has no need? Because it is a good thing to do. It encourages people & makes them feel loved. Plus it stops us being greedy. Give someone a smile. Hold the door open for someone. Give someone a bloom from your garden. A simple hug can make a difference. Be friendly. Be patient. Comfort someone. Forgive someone. Be happy for people when they are blessed. Bear with someone´s faults & weaknesses for none of us are perfect. Oh, the list is endless. It doesn´t matter if you don´t get a response to your act of kindness at the time you do it. It could be days of weeks later that the recipient feels the benefit of that act. It´s still all the worthwhile as good deeds have no expiry date.

Someone on Twitter said that winning the world cup would give the country hope. Hope for what? She didn´t say. Holding that trophy high wouldn´t answer my hopes. I doubt if it would answer yours in all honesty. During my sixty plus years on this planet I´ve had many hopes. I have a strong Christian faith & each time I´ve had ´hopes` I´ve commended them to my faith. I´m realistic to know that not all my ´hopes` will become reality. Many of them have, in all truthfulness, been impractical & wouldn´t have made my life any better. However, many of my ´hopes` have become reality. They are the ones that have come to fruition because I´ve got off my backside & done something about them.

Celebrate the achievement of the England team by all means. They did a good job. But don´t lay the hopes of the country at their feet alone. Each one of us can contribute to the countries hopes so that we can all say ¨We´re proud to be English¨.


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