Everyone keeps asking me if I’m ready for Christmas but I’ve hardly given it a thought. So I’m reassured yet again by my old friend’s comment of “It’s just a chicken dinner!” I’m clinging to that one this year David!
At the moment we’re just too busy preparing for a New Year Adventure to worry about Christmas. John and I are about to go over to Florida (visa permitting – we have an interview at the Embassy in London next week) to do some charity work with the church we visited in Tampa. “What!” I hear you say (well I can hear those of you who know us saying it) “Why leave the beautiful Scottish Borders countryside for an American cityscape!” and “You know it’s hot over there don’t you?” You see, if you know John you know that his full Scottish bloodline has given him some sort of antifreeze alongside the red and white corpuscles – he doesn’t even reach for a jumper until it gets to minus 5 and he finds anything over 20 too hot to be comfortable!
It is going to be quite a shock to us - but it is only for six months and we were so impressed with the way the church was connecting with the community. Outreach, evangelism, food banks, job creation schemes, alcoholics and drug addicts freed from addiction, support groups and home groups in local areas. I’ve seen all of these in various UK churches over the years but never all in the same place. Their creativity and vitality in reaching the community was intense – and it worked! The Holy Spirit is so at work there. So many lives transformed it made me cry! (Though I think I was supposed to be laughing.)
We are delighted by the opportunity we have been given by the church there and we are hoping that we will be able to bring back some of those amazing ideas and transforming power to help the ordinary people in the scattered country communities of our Scottish homeland too.
Watch this space!
P.S. Don't you just love the Xmas tree graphic? It's from Shy D and you can find it here.