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Tuesday, 28 July 2015

Seasonal Surprises

Summer in Scotland is notoriously unpredictable. Usually there are some weeks of warmth interspersed through days of wet and cool, but this year has remained so cool that our electric underblanket is still in use, as is the winter duvet. And the other night I lit a fire. In July. 

It’s not what even those acquainted with the oxymoron ‘Scottish summer’ expect. 

I’m in late summer/autumn of life, a season when I would expect that life would take on a more sedate pace. A time for exploring those postponed passions – reading, writing, travelling – a time for reflection and peace. 

Yet life is hectic and its pace leaves me slumping into bed each night wondering what I’ve been doing to make me so tired. I’m in a sandwich situation with cares for my elderly mother and the first grandchild now on the scene. I’m still trying to carve out time to write; I enjoy the garden and have to keep up the house; there are Bible studies and prayer groups and family gatherings and neighbours. 

It can be challenging to be grateful for the damp days of a Scottish summer, but I’ve also been in the drought days of a southern California summer this year and I know which is more sustainable. 

It can be challenging to be grateful for the demands on my time at this stage of life, but I am. I am so grateful for family and friends and neighbours who we love and who love us and who want to spend time with us. Maybe one of the reasons I’ve not been a very prolific writer over the years is that I veer towards choosing relationships over choosing to sit in a garret writing that great novel which must still be in me (since the others still await publishers). 

When my winter arrives and words are carved on my tombstone, I prefer that they will mention loving relationships than writing masterpieces.

I’ve been thinking today about Proverbs 3:5: Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. So I entrust the great muddle of life to the Lord, and give up on understanding it!

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