Well, I think that my shoulders have relaxed.
This holiday has been just what the doctor ordered. It took a few days to get going; to get me to chill out a bit and stop thinking too much, but we just have one day to go and I’m loving it. I don't want it to end.
It helps that the sun has been shining (my nose is definitely pinkish) and it helps that the sea is sparkly. It helps that the children are having a whale of a time (though not so much sleeping in their exciting bunk beds!) and it helps that this is a beautiful place with loads to do and my extensive research and meticulous (some would say pedantic) eye for detail has paid off, even if I do say so myself. None of the traditional holiday vacillating and time wasting for us - we've had trips out and days on the beach and it's all gone beautifully.
Not remotely control-freakish. Honest. Clearly the success of this holiday is all down to me. Ahem.
Thankyou for the outstanding beauty of this little planet that you’ve put us on. Today we went on a speedboat ride out in the bay and the sky was blue, the sea was blue and the sun sparkled off the waves as they broke. The driver of the motorboat drove us in concentric circles to make a whirlpool effect and then pulled up so that the boat jumped and splashed and the spray glittered like diamonds in the sun. I could taste it. There wasn’t a cloud in the sky and Elizabeth was sitting between Bryan and I and she was laughing with exhilaration and excitement. We all were. I can’t remember the last time that I laughed for joy but today speeding round the bay I was shouting to you and praising your name. In my head. Still a little bit too uptight to do that out loud, mind you.
When you were on this earth, Lord Jesus, did you have moments of exhilaration that took your breath away? You experienced the whole range of human emotions – what did you enjoy so much that you laughed with happiness? I suspect it wasn’t a speedboat on a sunny day. I'd love to know what it wast that you did that made you shout with joy.
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I started the week crying uncontrollably and begging you to save our holiday when on Sunday things seemed to be going so wrong. Today I closed my eyes and loved you for the blessings you rained down on me and my family. Thankyou.
We have spent time on the traditional hunt for pebbles with smiles (got a few contenders for this annual holiday title) and we’ve made sandcastles with varying degrees of success. We’ve paddled and splashed and eaten far too much, from fish and chips to barbecues to cream teas. We’ve negotiated an eight acre maize maze and climbed to the top of a lighthouse. We’ve explored the enormous church built in fourteen hundred and something and we’ve bought postcards.
|Maize maze. Amazing.|
We’ve seen sunrises and sunsets and a myriad of stars and taken hundreds of photographs. We’ve caught crabs, been on a rowing boat ferry and walked for miles. It has been wonderful and to be honest I’m not that bothered about going home and picking up the reins again – the inevitable attention to the problems that await me. They came with me on holiday to start with but after a day or two I persuaded them to head off home early but I know that they’re waiting for me.
How can I take this lighthearted feeling with me and not become weighed down with it all again? On holiday I don’t have the same responsibilities. We concentrate on enjoying ourselves. We indulge. We don’t work (any more than cooking and shopping and looking after the children and so on is work – but even that seems less of a grind.)
Well, that’s for another day. We have one more day here and we’ve decided to do again some of the best bits of the week. I was up before 5am this morning to watch the sunrise over the bay and so I’m having an early night so that I’ll be bright eyed and bushy tailed tomorrow.
|All my own work.|
I’m going to enjoy tomorrow and not think about the drive home. I’m going to soak up the sun and listen to the waves and watch the sparkling sea and not contemplate money or pensions or the future. I’m going to postpone thinking about the diet for another day and have an ice cream and a hot chocolate. I’m going to absorb the joy on my children’s faces as they run with their buckets and spades and hunt for shells. I’m going to be a child myself as I locate the perfect pebble with a smiley face and shake sand out of my shoes.
And I am going to thank my God in Heaven for giving it all to me.
Lord God, I can never thank you enough. Help me to notice the beauty of your world and remember it so that I can fetch out those memories when it’s raining next week and I’m worrying about Katy’s first day at school, or her next clinic appointment, or Elizabeth in her new class away from her friends. Help me to look at my smiley face pebble and think back to the blessings of this week when I start to fret about life and the future. Help me to remember how close I felt to you today.
Lord of the sun and the sea and the sky, how generous you are with good things.
I've had a nice holiday.