I’ve not posted here for a few days: as I’ve said before, I don’t want to post when all I have to report is what I’ve eaten for dinner, what I watched on TV, how many visits to the loo, etc., as seem to be a lot ‘Facebook’ posts! – but it has been a week of exceedingly mixed emotions, and contrast.
The ‘upside’ is that my dear friends Alan & Barbara – and yours truly! – have confirmed a July visit to wonderful Cali, Colombia. Wonderfully, God has provided for us all, the means to get there, or most of it: we wondered why the ticket prices were so high, as it’s not like Colombia has a ‘summer’ season, like we do: seasons there are dry and rainy, temperatures remain pretty much the same year round. THEN, Barbara discovered the reason – one I should have remembered! – that the 2013 World Games happen whilst we are there! No wonder airlines have increased their fares… 🙁 – but it should make the city even more enjoyable, and the taxi drivers even more manic!
There’s a brilliant promo video for the Games – here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yE8fA6FU42U&feature=youtu.be
– well worth a watch if you have a historic, stereotypical image of what this wonderful city is like. It’s going to be so wonderful to be there with A & B!
The other side of the coin is another of those ‘thorny’ issues that seem to be constantly bombarding me, concerning the USA. A little of my ‘stuff’ from the house there is now, theoretically, ‘on the water’ across the Atlantic, en route for Belfast. Other of said ‘stuff’ was supposed to have been sold, following Lee’s visit to sort the house out, last November. Nothing got sold, or even advertised: but basically, it was ‘home’. It was a bit of a shock to discover that ‘home’ had been sold for a little over US$300: I was anticipating that it would be at least four figures, and beginning with a reasonable number!
Seven years ago, my home in Worthing was burgled twice, and arson-attacked: anyone who has had the misfortune of being burgled will know the feeling of ‘violation’ it brings. For a couple of days this week, I felt even more ‘violated’, especially when you factor in that the house, owned by two dear friends in the UK, needs, it seems, to be redecorated before it can be sold, and the owners reimbursed with the sale proceeds. The house was supposedly redecorated some 2¾ years ago (don’t forget I’ve not been there for 4 years!) after a huge flood: and to my knowledge, no one has lived there since….
I have to confess, Tuesday night, and Wednesday, to being somewhat angry – I think (hope?) it was righteous anger, and feeling extremely ‘let-down’: but Wednesday, I sat here at my computer, and suddenly had an astonishing pain in my chest, the like of which I’d never experienced, but that I’ve heard people who have had heart-attacks, describe. I realised pretty quickly it was stress, and sat here, and, as best I could, shouted TO God and AT Satan – one to ask him stop the pain, and the crushing feeling, the other to leave me alone and get his hands off of me…. I’m delighted to say, it went…. Stress, and anything related to it that causes it, can do astonishing things to you physically, can’t it? I realised, too, that some of the stress was caused through losing my ‘stuff’…. four times now I’ve lost my home, almost in its entirety, and I always feel that I’ve dealt with what possessions can do to you, only to discover there’s another measure of it that I haven’t dealt with! Hopefully, that was the last time… and I’ve learned now…
If you’ve ever lost your home, you’ll know what I mean. But once again, I had to let God take care of what I couldn’t do anything about, and today, I can look at the loss now, and just say – ‘o.k., it’s gone: what now, Lord?’ My belief is that we don’t know how much possessions mean to us until we don’t have them anymore… and how they can cripple us, affect us, and even disable us spiritually.
For 36 hours, I was, I’ll admit, in the pits. I’m not now, thankfully, and thank you, Lord! So, tonight, to celebrate, I’m heading off to the Odyssey auditorium in Belfast to see what was given to me as a 60th birthday gift – a concert with the amazing Eric Clapton – his 50th anniversary tour! Then I’ll get home, and, into the night, watch the recording of Brighton & Hove Albion, one of my two football ‘loves’ (West Ham being the other), thrash arch-enemies Crystal Palace in the first leg of the Championship play-off semi-finals! Thank God for music and football! (the proper sort, not that American namby-pamby helmets and ‘Dallas-like’ shoulder pads sort – that’s just rugby for wimps!)….