Tuesday, 3 January 2012

Back to Work Tuesday

"By the sweat of your brow will you have food to eat until you return to the ground from which you were made." (Gen 3:19)

And so as the Christmas break ground to a halt, and in obedience to the Biblical command, many returned to work. Except those who were working last week, like bin-people and shopworkers and warehouse people and firefighters, the police and ambulance - and the Scottish, of course, who get the extra day. And vicars and the like who, after days of sleep deprivation through Midnight Communions, Masses of the Dawn, Watchnights and what have you, need a few days off to get some sleep.

We've packed all the Beaker People with standard office jobs back off today with a sprinkling of water from the Pouring Beaker, and the ironic strains of "I wish it could be Christmas every day".

And yes, as I said in my short address, it's tempting to think wouldn't it be great if there were no work - just sitting round eating Turkey and listening to the Wombles.  Always Christmas but never getting to Easter. But life's not like that. And for all the back-break or mind-ache of the jobs some do, those with no jobs aren't always so happy. Some are blessed with the health and imagination to lead fulfilling lives; and some are blessed with the cash to make idleness happy if they don't have the imagination. But for most of us, worklessness is as bad as drudgery and work part of the rhythm of lives - a place to meet others, a change of scene, and sometimes a place to enjoy.

So I sent them off with those cheering words, then put my feet off and spent the rest of the day dining off crumpets and black coffee and reading "The Return of the Native". I like to think it's not slacking - it's exercising a prophetic ministry.

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