Belfast Telegraph

Home Life Features

Discovering my uncle's lost Home Guard badge gave me amazing joy

Thought for the Weekend

By Rev Gareth Burke

For many of us, Saturday night and the viewing of 'Dad's Army' on BBC One were once intrinsically bound up together. The creators of the long running series got their inspiration from observing the activities of the British Home Guard during the Second World War. The Home Guard had consisted of men who were ineligible for regular military service because of age or involvement in professions that were considered to be vital to the war effort.

Some of the characters that featured on the programme have become well known and their names have stayed with us over the years - Captain Mainwaring, Sergeant Wilson, Lance Corporal Jones. While the programme was amusing and entertaining, we must recognise that to have lived through the Second World War and to have been part of the war effort would not have been an amusing experience. Undoubtedly, there would have been good friendships to be found within the Home Guard and no doubt there were some moments of comedy as well, yet service would have involved considerable disruption to family life, as well as the added pressure of combining night time duties with a 'day job'.

My uncle was part of the 'Ulster Home Guard' in Co Fermanagh. Many years ago he gave to me a lapel badge bearing the initials 'UHG', with a small crown adorning the top of the badge. It was always a treasured possession, but some 13 years ago it got lost. Really lost. Not to be found. However, a few months ago during a big clear out of my study at home, I found it.

The joy was quite something to witness. There, in a little box, tucked away in an obscure corner, was my piece of 'Dad's Army' memorabilia!

There's joy when something lost is found. Jesus tell us that 'there is joy among the angels of God over one sinner who repents' (Luke15: 10). Imagine! Joy in heaven among the angels. Of course, this is the greatest thing that can happen to anybody. For a man or a woman to repent of their sin and to come to living faith in Jesus Christ, the Son of God, is the greatest thing imaginable. Nothing compares to this.

I wonder - will there be rejoicing in heaven among God's angels today? Will they be rejoicing over you?

Belfast Telegraph


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