The other day I was surprised to read that suicide is the biggest cause of death of British men under 50 years of age. I was expecting it to be heart disease or cancer. And yet, on reflection, should I be so surprised?
Only once have I made a New Year’s resolution – actually I made two resolutions one New Year’s Eve, and before noon the next day I realised I’d broken both and decided never to bother again!
However, it is always good to have something to aim for, maybe it is to lose the extra pounds put on over Christmas – heyho!
I love Christmas. Just imagine how long the winter would seem without Christmas in the middle of it. I love the festivities, the crazy lights people put up on their houses, even the really over the top ones, the busy shops, mulled wine and log fires (you can keep the mince pies though – sorry if you are a mince pie lover). Sure, it all goes a bit too much at times, and can become far too commercial, and so much pressure put on us all. I especially feel for those who are alone, who have no family, who have gone through loss, who are missing their loved ones. These things are all highlighted so much at this time of the year.
I have just returned from an appointment at the vets with Tilly, our rather aged Parson Jack Russell.
For a number of months she has experienced unexplained hair and weight loss and, following blood tests last month, we were told that she may have a problem with her liver which may possibly be a growth. We have been preparing ourselves for a deterioration in her condition and the ultimate loss of our dear and beloved friend.
Handbags and Glad Rags
A few months ago I read an article in the local paper about a handbag that sold for more than £200,000 – and it wasn’t even new. It was made of Himalayan crocodile with gold detailing and lots of diamonds and was officially the most expensive handbag in the world.
Do you use Social Media? I was introduced to FaceBook by my son when he first went to university. It enabled him to keep me up to date and was a lovely and positive experience while he was away from home.
Later, FaceBook became a huge blessing and source of comfort to me as a vast number of colleagues used it when my first husband died and I was away from work – it enabled them to send their messages of support and comfort to me but without it being intrusive as I could dip in and out as and when I wanted.
I now use it to keep in touch with the many families we have involved with the church Edward Bear club for pre-schoolers (see details inside this magazine).
I am writing this at the end of quite a momentous few weeks for this country. We have voted to leave the EEC, England were knocked out of the European cup by outsiders, Iceland, leaving only Wales and Ireland to go forward in the competition. But as much as these events have stirred the hearts of many there was one thing that occurred, that, for me, was far more moving. That event was the commemoration of the Battle of the Somme, remembering all those men who died. I’m not referring to the ceremony that took place at the memorial but to the “We’re here because” commemoration.
In my day to day work I am blessed by the ordinary people I meet (non church-going people) who are going about their daily lives. Blessed because of the truths they reveal to me about themselves, and what they ‘know’ about God.
This week I met someone who said: “I’m not religious, but I believe in an Intelligence; a Power; I believe there must be something behind everything there is.” They didn’t know who or what this “something” is, but they believed it must be something very powerful.