British Summer Time (Ros' Blog)
As I write this, at the tail-end of July, I sit shivering in a cold office. I’ve just come back from two weeks in a warm and sunny France, and the contrast is as unwelcome as it is striking!
I don’t think, however, that this counts as what cricket commentator Brian Johnston used to call a “Madame Butterfly summer” (One Fine Day) because when I went to water my garden on my first day back, the water butt was pretty much dry, so I think there must have been some nice weather here while I was away.
Be that as it may, the torrential rain over the weekend (leaking into my hallway from a broken porch roof) and chilly temperatures weren’t what I was planning for my summer this year. Dreams of sitting out in the garden after work eating my dinner in the late evening sunshine have proved to be exactly that – just dreams.
Life has a way of doing that to us, disrupting our carefully-laid plans. It may be a flare-up of arthritis, a wave of exhaustion from overdoing things when you felt well, or, like our own Jenny recently, being confined indoors owing to a misbehaving car. Whatever the reason, the things we thought we were going to be doing don’t materialise.
Even Jesus had this problem. There was one occasion when He set out for Jerusalem via a mission trip to some Samaritan villages, but before He had a chance to proclaim the Gospel of the kingdom, the messengers who had gone ahead to make preparations for Him were sent away with a flea in their ear by the villagers.
He didn’t allow the change of plans to upset Him, nor did He express resentment towards the Samaritan villagers. Instead, with a good grace, He continued to listen out for His Father’s instructions and went where He wanted Him to go. On days when a disability is particularly difficult to cope with or frustrates the day’s plans, He is our example.
I know I sometimes have trouble adjusting to unexpectedly new circumstances. Jesus is, in this as in everything, an excellent role-model for us to follow. Next time life throws you a curveball, try asking God where He’s directing you instead. It might be the start of an adventure!