We have had the visit of some family members over the last couple of days whom we had not seen for a number of years. Debbie’s niece, Kim, came with her 5year old daughter, Kyah, from their home in Antigua. Kim’s mum, Stephanie, who now lives on Skye, had driven them up from the south of England where they had visited other family members on route. Kyah, as you can imagine, is a typical five year old, energetic, funny, messy and sometimes bossy. They have now gone on to Skye where they will spend the next few weeks together.
We had some fun together. Kyah is a very inquisitive child and had lots to tell us. She took great delight in teaching us the national anthem of Antigua and Barbuda, although she clearly wasn’t too impressed with my rendition. For some reason she thought I was out of tune! Suddenly the house seems a lot quieter now, but there is still plenty of evidence that they have been. There are items to clear away, a mountain of bed covers and pillow cases needing to be washed and generally seeing to things that have to be done and dusted. All this is coupled with some happy memories of their brief time with us.
This provides a parable of life really. I like the analogy of the Christian faith being like journey. It is a series of irreplaceable and unrepeatable experiences which carry us to whatever personal development we can reach. We may find it helpful to pause sometimes and to reflect on our journey so far. We will look back and no doubt there will have been times of happiness and laughter; times of contentment and fulfilment; and times of regret and disappointment. They all form part of the varied tapestry of life. But through all these times, each of us will make a mark on those with whom we come into close contact. It may not be the mark we think we leave, and this is where some honest reflection comes into play. There are times when I look back and think, I wish I had done things differently but none of us can necessarily turn the clock back. We can only smile, love, learn and go on.