Sunday, 6 March 2011

Giving Serendipity a Hand

There are things which happen to us in life.  Sometimes we appear to have had no  involvement in events, they just occur and we either benefit from them, suffer from them, or occasionally find our lives completely changed by events in which we have had no hand.
Some people regard this as coincidence, some believe we are always involved at some level in what happens in our lives.
Coincidence, happenstance, serendipity call it what you will, does it really exist?
Since Ash Wednesday is almost here, a time when many people, Christian or otherwise traditionally feel a need to give up something, refrain from a particular behaviour, reject an easy option or in some way make an alteration to our daily life which will mysteriously make us better people - even if only until Easter - or change the impact we have on others, it seems a good time to try this out.
I fully intend to give up dark chocolate, a particular addiction, but while this will benefit me to some extent it will make no difference to anyone else, so what to do additionally?
Since the death of my husband 18 months ago, I have tried all manner of new ways of coping with a very lonely existence and some of them have helped a little, but the deafening silence of an empty house is not easy to dispel and no amount of TV does more than make a temporary dent in the wall  of cotton wool in which I appear to live.
So, perhaps the answer is to  make Lent the time to change my way of life for good.
This is where the problem arises, waiting for a chance epiphany is likely to prove unproductive so what can I do which will change my life and that of the people I meet day-to-day?
Sadly, This is as far as I've got, but I'm working on it.  After all there are still 2 whole days yet!


  1. I had a friend who signed up for a course on Bible and theology a few years ago - he said he was having a lot of trouble with his faith, and so he decided (as he put it) that "if he wanted to get run over by a truck, he should go lie down in the road." So I wonder, where can you put yourself so that you will get run over by the thing you are seeking to help you change your life? Blessings on your discernment.

  2. Thanks for the blessings, always welcome Penny.
    I shall be attending the series of Lent Talks in St M's., whether or not they will make any appreciable difference in terms of a life-plan remains to be seen, but it is at least another avenue to explore.

  3. Hi Ray, Interested in where you've got to. I wonder what I would do if I wanted to escape "the deafening silence of an empty house" in your phrase. Perhaps, teach reading to children in a state school in a more deprived area, or teach English to an incarcerated asylum seeker, or refugee or new immigrant, or volunteer in a prison, or help out at Alpha, or do some volunteer gardening, or visit shut-ins, or a nursing home. You did say you don't drive though. Get a driving licence, perhaps? I hope you find something which will be a huge blessing to yourself and others.
    Blessings, and have a blessed Lent.

  4. Hi Anita. Thanks for the suggestions. When I retired 17 years ago, I did do a couple of years as a volunteer Adult Learning teacher locally, but ran out of energy and enthusiasm at about the same time.
    My own garden takes what energy I have though if I were ten years younger I might do some for other people and as for the driving, it was one of the first things I tried after John,s death.
    Ten lessons were quite enough to convince me (and my teacher) that our roads are sufficiently dangerous without my input.
    So, been there, tried most of those, but always open to more ideas, bearing in mind my limitations.
    Thanks again and for the Lenten blessing.
    Every Blessing to you too.

  5. Life is just so simple but you do not always see that which is so close and accessible ? Down the drive for 8 normal walking steps not those pidgeon steps people do, immediate left for approx 7 steps and if that hits a bush then one to the right and one more forward . . . one more immediate left for approx 10 normal steps to two large concrete steps. poise . . . raise a left hand and ring the door bell . . . . there you will find a 'welcome always into a completely off the wall enviroment' and a 'willing body' happy to exchange 'the deafening silence of an empty house' for ' complete mayhem, noise beyond imaginable comprehension, a bouncing border collie, one ginger indulgence, a one eyed fat black lap blanket, four adorable entertaining humanoids (children) and one DIY guru who needs a prompt off the sofa !! x x only another 83 posts to catch up on . . . . an most important dear lady . . . I have and am still missing you x x x

  6. I have just found your blog Ray. What treasure!
    I am getting weary of some of the vicar blogs which I read every day thro Google Reader and have been pruning some out of my blog rolls and looking to read some REAL stuff.

  7. Hi Karen
    Lovely to know you are still alive. Haven't heard your dulcet tones for a while - thought you'd emigrated. Will take those few steps into 'Hoodlum Hall' hope you'll be home

  8. Hello Margaret,
    welcome to the asylum! I've been reading you for a while, though you don't post often.
    Thanks for the compliment. I can do REAL even if nothing else very much!

  9. You are very brave and very wise. Little steps build up eventually and I pray you find your own ways of coping. With Every Blessing

  10. Oh Freda. if you only knew just how little courage I actually have. Sheer necessity forces some kind of action but as to its wisdom only time will tell.
    As ever, thanks for the blessing. More of the same to you.