... it is also the last day of my sabbatical.
I still have a lot of writing up to do and not much time left in which to do it! Plus as Monday is now once more my 'day off' I have arranged to see a friend on for lunch, so not much work happening today.
If the purpose of the three months was to slow down and chill, then it has been largely successful
If it was to enhance my spiritual disicpline - or a least find tools to assist I that - it has been an abject failure. Except that I know I really do need to seek out a spiritual director, if such a person can indeed be found in this presbyterian nation!
If it was to reflect on my cancer experiences in dialogue with those of others, it has been valuable and insightful - if not necessarily in the ways I had anticipated. If my offer of a paper at the conference in New Zealand next February is successful then it will feel like a 'job well done'. I think there will be stuff of use for both Baptist Unions too.
If it was to learn from other churches, then it has been successful, both in what I set to discover and what I learned along the way. And it made me appreciate my own church all the more.
The last full week of sabbatical was a canal boat holiday with old friends who would not describe themselves as Christian or any other faith. In some small measure it reflected the sabbatical - a slow journey out and back to where it began, times of stillness, times of laughter (and of conflict), too much food, too little exercise... and the joy of finally being back home where a very excited Holly Cat leapt into my arms and purred for Europe. You can't beat sleeping in your own bed, and you can't beat being in your own routine.
Tomorrow the six o'clock alarm will herald my return to work. I fear I will not be as energised and holified as I or anyone else might hope - but I am ready to start back on the adventure I share with the Gatherers as we seek to play our part in God's mission and ministry in this time and this place.
For the season of rest just ending - thank you God
For the season of routine to come - thank you God
For all that has been, thank you
For what is to come, yes.