On Sunday past, after coming home from the morning service, I went to the kitchen to make myself a hot bowl of porridge. As I was making my porridge, I tuned in to the Archers omnibus on Radio 4. I just wanted a bit of company since the Mhinisteir had gone to conduct the other services.
As I was waiting for my porridge to cool down, I decided to do some shredding in our utility room where our paper shredder lives. For the life of me, the shredder wouldn’t work. I decided to leave it and enjoy my by then warm porridge. As I was enjoying my porridge, a thought came to my mind…… maybe some things are best left on the Lord’s Day. Anyway, as I got on with the day, that thought was at the back of my mind. By the time Monday came, I had forgotten all about it until I had to go to the utility room for something. I desperately wanted to know if it was God reminding me that the Sabbath is a day of rest. In Scotland I would never have dreamt of shredding on a Sunday as it was just not the done thing. In any case, in between the morning and evening service, we would have folk around for Sunday Lunch so there was never the time to do it. I know of people who wouldnt even wash their dishes on a Sunday!!!!
I want to be obedient to God but I am also one who don’t follow rules just for the sake of it instead of understanding the real meaning behind it.
Anyway back to Monday, I turned on the Shredder and guess what? It worked. The light came on and the shredder functioned as normal.
Many will quote the fourth commandment that says keep the Sabbath day holy to justify not doing any work etc. I couldnt agree more that we need to keep it holy but I also think that the second part of the verse about rest often gets overlooked.
Personally, I think that God was reminding me that resting on the Sabbath is important for there is always the six other days to do my shredding!!!!
Recently, the Mhinisteir and I decided that the only way to get a proper rest on his day off was to disappear from the vicarage. We booked a hotel room for the night and went away to our secret place of hiding. We even managed to have a fabulous meal at Wagamama.
Since we don’t own a television at home, we decided to watch the news on the television before calling it a night. Just then, the fire alarm went off!!!!!! I went into a right panic and started stripping the sheets!!!! The Mhinisteir looked at me in a daze….. for I was convinced that it was the electric blanket that I had brought along from home that had triggered the alarm!!!!!! I was afraid that we would be found out so I quickly grabbed the electric blanket and hid it in our suitcase and it was only then did we go to our assembly point. It was past 11pm and it was cold. There were so many who had run out of the hotel in their pyjamas and were literally shivering.
The fire engine arrived soon after. Their initial investigations revealed that it was the business next to the hotel that had triggered the alarm and that all was well in our hotel. Phew!!! What a relief!!!!! Thankfully, nobody had to find out about my electric blanket!!!!!
The Mhinisteir and I were each gifted a pair of knitted fingerless gloves for Christmas. It was from one of our many parishioners. It was so very kind and thoughtful of her. We have never owned a pair of fingerless gloves so we are really looking forward to using them. They will come in so useful in the winter months as all our churches are freezing cold. Wearing a traditional pair of gloves make turning hymn book pages very difficult!
For the past two days, I have been unable to access my WordPress account using my IPad. I initially thought that it was a problem with WordPress but I soon came to be senses. All I was getting was a blank screen. Anyway, I decided to use my laptop to try and see if I would be able to access my blog. Thankfully it was a success as I was beginning to panic that I would lose my entire blog!!!! I really don’t know why I can’t access my blog when using the IPad!!!!
In early December, I got a letter from our bank which is the Royal Bank of Scotland to say that they owe me a few hundred pounds in PPI Claim on a loan that we took almost 20 years ago.
Just this past week, I got another letter from the same bank saying that they owe me more money in another PPI claim. Really?? I couldn’t believe my eyes when I read the letter. Another reminder that God is not only generous but that He knows our every needs!
Rural living is expensive as you have to have your oil tank topped up in addition to paying for electricity. It is for this reason that I think that the Church of England should give Rural Living Allowance to clergy who minister in Rural areas. I know for a fact that the Church of Scotland used to give out Island living allowance for clergy who ministered on Scottish Islands. I don’t know if they still do but I hope they do.
Anyway, we hope to use the PPI claim towards our Winter fuel expense as we need more oil top ups in the Winter months in order to keep warm. Oil is expensive and It doesn’t help that the minimum order for oil is 500 litres!!!!
The Mhinisteir was needing a new trouser press and so we bought one from John Lewis. Our new Corby Trouser Press was delivered to us just after the new year. As we opened the box that contained the new trouser press, I commented to the Mhinisteir that a Millenial will probably not know what a trouser press is!!! In the olden days, good hotels always had a trouser press but these days they are almost extinct.
The trouser press required simple assembly before we could start using it. The Mhinisteir is not good with his hands at all so he struggled to assemble the trouser press and decided that he will assemble it at a later date!
I on the other hand am good with my hands but the Mhinisteir wasn’t allowing me to assemble it as he was afraid that I might tire myself given my health condition.
Anyway, one week had past and the trouser press was still in our dining room waiting to be assembled. I was getting impatient and decided to take matters into my own hands. Yesterday was an exceptionally busy day for the Mhinisteir and because he was out the whole day, I managed to assemble the trouser press! I was pretty chuffed with myself even though I needed a lie down after that!!!
Now, the Mhinisteir can finally start using his new trouser press.
The first piece of news I heard just after we welcomed in 2020 was the death of author M C Beaton. I was very sorry to hear it as she is one of my favourite authors. I have just started reading her Agatha Raisin Series of books. While in Scotland, I enjoyed her Hamish Macbeth series.
This morning while reading an obituary of her in the Telegraph, I discovered that the former Archbishop of Canterbury, Rowan Williams was a fan!!!
2019 started on a massive high.
We moved into our new Parish and my health was beginning to look up. However, a few months into the new year, we had a few sudden deaths in our family/friendship circle acutely reminding us of our own fragility.
The Mhinisteir found his new parish very challenging. There were a lot of unresolved problems that he had inherited. My own health was beginning to go downhill very quickly. It was discouraging. Serious illnesses were beginning to plaque older family members. Fair weather friends were exposed. Even though I am used to this, it still hurts when people break your trust!!!
Fast forward to December 2019, things were very different. Life is more settled. Health is still like a yoyo but I am contented. God was with us and constantly reminded us that we are never on our own like for example when we got this huge bill just before Christmas. In a miraculous way, it was all sorted within a week for it is He who owns the cattles in a thousand hills.
As I step into 2020, I do not have any resolutions but am going to cling on to His promise as it is found in Isaiah 52
For ye shall not go out with haste, nor go by flight: for the Lord will go before you; and the God of Israel will be your reward. – Isaiah 52:12
Happy New Year to all who faithfully read my blog!!
Bean A’ Mhinisteir xx