A year in the life…

So I’ve managed to blog every day for a year, I think there were 3 or 4 days when I didn’t manage to write something, but caught up the following day.  I’ve also obviously mixed up the numbers so it didn’t reach 365. Here’s some random lessons learned……

* Most days it’s quite difficult to remember what you did yesterday. The process of actually thinking through what you did has been worthwhile. It’s made me more thankful in my daily praying. People have often regaled the benefits of journaling which I’d never taken seriously before but it does have value.

* The temptation to exaggerate, make yourself look busier than you are is always there. Infact I find that in one day I can be both a workaholic and lazy. Those of us in church ministry need to be self starters in this regard. Discipline is a good thing.

* My reading is sporadic, there are times when I can fly through books but then other periods when I don’t get the time or struggle to actually get down to it. I also need to retain better what I’ve read, I’ve never had a system on this but it’s probably time I did.

* Mondays are absolutely vital – if I get a good start on preparation the rest of the week is more relaxed, if Monday gets taken up I’m normally really battling to prepare at the end of the week.

* I need to do more exercise

* Working late rarely reaps any reward

* Planning ahead means days off happen, no planning and things are often haphazard and family time can get crowded out

*  I could do with switching off more, I find in ministry that time to think is the hardest to carve out. There’s also no point in setting time aside to think and plan when you’re exhausted.

* I wish someone had taught me to write!

* Being prepared for Sunday’s enables me to be with the family more on the Lord’s Day

There’s other lessons I could point out but I’ll leave it there. Overall I’ve enjoyed writing the blog and had lots of good comeback, I will carry it on for a bit and maybe try and use it for referencing some books but we’ll see!

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Day 361

Day 361 – Wed 30 Aug – It was one of those mornings where you feel like you’ve done a days work by 9.30 in the morning. Negotiating with builders who fair play to them fixed the muck up from yesterday with grace, taking things back to Wickes, n the phone to different folk. I travelled into the City to meet one of our congregation for lunch, I managed to get a good bit of reading done on the tube and was home around 3ish. I started writing my sermon for a week on Sunday morning. In the evening it was our first prayer gathering at Dean Hall, we had a good time and Gethin led well, slightly smaller in numbers but lots away on holidays. I am a little nervous as to how evening/ night meetings will go at Dean Hall over this autumn/ winter. It’s a great provision but possibly not the most attractive at night, must pray. Our good friend Annie was over from Grove so we stayed up chatting.

Day 359

Day 359 – Tue 29 Aug – I have had two and a half months off preaching at IPC and amazingly I find myself further behind in planning for this term than in other years. I’ve done loads of background prep but nothing ready to preach. So I got my head down to begin preparing some sermons for a short series on the Holy Spirit.

I met with Gethin and Chris just to briefly go through the next few weeks. I love it when things start up again and you get back to “normal” church life. Adam Curtis  from Tunbridge Wells spoke at ELT on John 2. He’s currently at Cornhill and was very good, engaging and good on the text. There was a brief stop in Mcdonalds with some of our lot and then I cycled down to Shepherds Bush to see Reuben Hunter. It was helpful to talk over church membership with him, he’s doing a great work at Trinity West.

Our builders managed to make a mistake on putting a sink in the wrong place. It’s incredible how something so small can be so stressful. Hopefully they will be able to sort it out. I played 5 a side in the evening and it was hard work, oh to be in shape again.

Day 358

Day 358 – Mon 28 Aug – It was a glorious sunny bank holiday and we had a lovely day pottering round the house. The kids were in great form and it was lovely to be home. Dora popped round in the afternoon and took No and Els to the park whilst we did house stuff. In the evening I even managed to pop to Ikea and was there and back in just over an hour.

Day 357

Day 357 – Sun 27 Aug – I’d gone to bed early so to wake up for the Mayweather/ Macgregor fight, I listened to the last 6 rounds and then went back to sleep. In the morning James Torrens was leading a family service and spoke very well on “The Word enduring forever” after a great lunch, the Humphris’ drove me to the airport and it was all very straightforward.

I managed to get back to Dean Hall for the end of the evening service which I was really pleased to. Folk have done a terrific job moving stuff in and there’s bound to be teething problems but to be able to use it for free for this year is a remarkable provision. The builders had done a couple of things on Saturday while I was away and so we’re on track to be done by Friday.

Day 356

Day 356 – Sat 26 Aug – It’s a pretty relaxed programme on the weekend so I wasn’t doing the first session till 11. I’d really struggled to know what to speak on and in the end with 2 sessions on the Fear of God. People really listened and there was a sense in which I felt really helped in speaking. It’s always hard to judge . The church in HIC is growing and it’s been a slow work but there’s a great welcoming atmosphere among the folk. James Torrens is a fine leader and preacher, I’m confident that if it can carry on as it is it will grow. There’s a great mix in the congregation of ages, ethnicities and nationalities The afternoon there were various activities but I slept before giving my second session on the Fear of the Lord. Giving both talks did me good if no one else.

There was an evening meal before the kids did a talent show, first up were bagpipes (indoors!!) and then an accordion. The kids were in fine form, afterwards the adults did room 101, I’d never watched the tv programme but various folk rant on things that they’d like to get rid of in life. I was in bed early, I’d hoped to read more this weekend but have failed on that count so far.