A message from Rita Goddard, Lay Minister

Posted by Admin on Wednesday, 22nd August 2007, 00:00

Rita Goddard, Lay Minister

c/o The Rectory, Chawton Lane, Northwood

As I write this article, two matters occupy both the local and national daily headlines. One is Cowes Week and the other is the Foot and Mouth Disease crisis. Why do I have more than a passing interest in these two articles? It is because they represent two strands of my life and yet they are totally different. Life is made up of many strands, some bringing real joy into our lives and others shaping our lives and personalities through the hard times. When you look at a tapestry there are not only many different colours but also varying shades to add perspective and interest to the whole picture. These different strands and colours in our own life pictures are made up of, amongst other things, family circumstances, employment and relaxation. You will be able to identify your own strands in life and indeed perhaps the colour you associate with them.

Whilst auditing for a national Builders’ Merchants, the colours varied from day to day, depending upon the reception I received at a local branch or the traffic jams I encountered whilst driving many miles a day. Some staff were none too happy when, during stocktaking, I had to suggest a recount of thousands of nails or hundreds of tins of paint!

Some of the brightest strands appeared during management of a Christian Conference Centre. Not only was it a joy and delight, but also a privilege to regularly meet new people and share their lives. These bright strands became even more vibrant during my time as a team member setting up a new branch of an international Christian Healing Organisation. Those were thrilling days as we saw God moving in people’s lives in quite remarkable ways.

What of life now? That’s where the strands of Cowes Week and the Foot and Mouth Crisis come in. Although I am not a sailor myself (apart from the UKSA free taster sessions!) I thoroughly enjoy the buzz and excitement and general atmosphere of everything ‘boaty’. Working with an agricultural charity could bring in the black or grey strands, especially in 2001 when several farmers resorted to suicide because of the tragedy of culling their livestock. Thankfully, at the moment it would seem that this year’s crisis is being contained. Thankfully too, God has been and still is weaving all these strands into my own life picture. Maybe next time we meet you can tell me about some of the strands in your own life.

In the meantime I pray God’s blessing upon us all.

Rita Goddard
Lay Minister

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