There is nothing particularly significant about going on holiday in July rather than August. But you get used to it. So I feel that I have been trudging steadily through July – doing at least some useful things but trudging nonetheless. Poppy has her bucket and spade packed and asks every day if it’s time …. and we’ll be off to Donegal for the first couple of weeks of August.
Meanwhile I’ve been doing some reading – some of it in preparation for the dialogue between the Anglican Communion and the World Communion of Reformed Churches which I’ll be part of in October. I’m also busy reading the ‘what I am going to read on holiday’ columns in the Guardian. I’m very impressed by the extent to which people at least claim that they are going above the level of the classic ‘beach read’ One of our clergy reminded me that it is time to read ‘Lanark’ and I’m going to have a go at that.
And while I am thinking about the reformed faith, a friend gave me a ‘Diary of Private Prayer’ by John Baillie. I hadn’t encountered his writing. He died in 1960 having been Moderator of the Church of Scotland in 1943 and a president of the World Council of Churches in 1954. More than a million copies of his ‘Diary’ have been printed and there is something about it ..
‘O heavenly Father, give me a heart like the heart of Jesus, a heart more ready to serve than to be served, a heart moved by compassion towards the weak and oppressed, a heart set upon the coming of your kingdom in the world of men and women … ‘