I was shocked to discover that it is a year since I wrote something for
The Villager. I am told that it is a feature of getting older that time
seems to get shorter, For me it has been a year of feeling old and
young at the same time and a year in which a lot has happened. The
“young” experience was getting married on Easter Saturday to Jean
Rowlands. Jean is a friend from way back. Last year, a year or so after
my first wife, Jennie, died of cancer we re-established the friendship
and things developed from there. We decided that rather than move into
one of our houses it would be better to make a new start in a new house
and were absolutely delighted to discover that Tree Tops in Church Lane
was for sale. We moved in in June.
The other major event, the “old” bit, was retiring from HR Wallingford
(as it is now known) after 43 years there. I came as a school leaver
aged 18 and retired in September as a Technical Director. All I would
say is that for me it has been a wonderful adventure, contributing to
several major projects.
So here I am, at 61, much to my surprise, putting the past behind me and
launching out into a new life with a new wife, new home and this
relatively new occupation as Pastor of Brightwell Free Church, having a
feeling of optimism and expectancy.
On 8 September we opened the doors again to the dedicated cyclists who
were raising money for various church funds and about 70 of them called
in. We also did our afternoon tea thing like we did last year. It was
nice to see the place buzzing with conversation and activity, but it was
mainly friends of the church. We delivered leaflets to virtually every
house in the village, inviting you to come along, and there was very
little response. I am always a bit reluctant to do things like door
knocking and mail drops because it seems like we are desperate for your
support. We are not at all desperate. The point is that we have some
really really good news that we want to share with you. I suspect that
you know what is coming, so I won’t try to spell it out here. Why not
come along and ask us if you would like to know more?
As we look out at our lovely garden and see all the plant and wildlife
and as Jean and I were listening to Grieg’s Piano Concerto I was hit
with the thought that some people really do believe that this all
happened by some cosmic chance meeting of some chemicals. As David says
(Psalm 19) “The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim
the work of his hands.” So, come on, get real!