This evening the Lent Course began. I was really looking forward to spending the evening with folk from other churches in the parish. My daughter was due to go bowling.
It was after 5pm when the phone rang. My daughter picked it up and after an initial greeting, listened with great interest and but contributed no more. I grew suspicious - was she involved in some complex telesales scenario?
"Who is it?" I asked, but she just grinned infuriatingly and said not a word. I took the receiver but could not hear anything. I pressed the speaker button but I still could not hear anything. I terminated the call, to my daughters disgust.
"I was listening to that! It was about bad traffic!" Apparently my husband had picked up the upstairs phone and she had been listening in to a discussion about the trip this evening. By the end of the call my husband had been roped in to help with transport!
Knowing we were supposed to be going to St Peter's my husband then had the bright idea that I might like to walk from St John's to St Peter's in the dark, through the parkland... I declined the opportunity.
This evening we changed our plans. We let go of what we wanted to do and enabled a group activity to take place. My husband and daughter got to go and play bowls and I got to spend time working on a project that had been the object of much procrastination!
Lent is a time of giving up, and so it seemed quite right to lay down what we planned to do, which was for our personal gain, and instead to give priority to others, particularly as it was an outreach group. There is the danger that we can be too busy doing church to be church.
Lent - a time of surprises...