Thursday – hectic!

Today was a really busy day for Simon- he spent the morning preparing materials for the two talks he was giving later in the day. The afternoon saw the first of two seminars at Wellspring for local businesses, teaching marketing strategy ideas that Simon uses with his clients in t her UK. It was very well received. We had the 21 attendees that we had planned for – they ranged from tailors and bakers, salon owners and wholesalers, to business and marketing graduates wanting to start their own businesses. Although there was a lot of material to cover in a short time, the feedback was that it has really brought a new way of thinking for those who attended. In an economy where innovation is rare and almost all businesses are copies of their neighbours the idea of setting your business apart and giving customers a compelling reason to buy from you instead of your competitors was particularly powerful.

In the evening (just one and a half hours later) Simon met with the business club of a local church in a packed meeting room where he gave a very similar talk to the one he gave at Wellspring church last Sunday, emphasising the validity of work, that it can be seen as just important as ‘full time Christian work’ – in fact, if you believe that you are doing what God has called and gifted you to do, whether you are a teacher, an office worker, a mother at home, a pastor, a taxi driver or a civil servant, then you ARE a full time Christian worker. There is here, as to some degree in the UK, a sense of two classes of citizenship in the church, the first class citizens being those ‘in the ministry’ pastors, teachers, evangelists, and then there are the rest of us. Well the Bible doesn’t make any such distinction between sacred and secular, but encourages all of us that ‘Whatever we do, work at it will all of our hearts, as working for the Lord, not for men’. Simon was told the next day the his talk had had a profound effect on members of the business club, who had a nagging feeling that what the were doing wasn’t ‘the best’, but now felt they could legitimately pursue excellence in the work they were already doing, instead of dreaming about being a pastor (goodness knows we already have too many of them out here).

The children and Clare had a much easier day! It was paddling again at the nursery so the children joined in with water play and building sandcastles but it is incredibly hot at the moment and hasn’t rained since we arrived so we hid in the shade after a relatively short time this week. We took in a book when they finished and read to the youngest group- it was a story that my children knew so they helped with the reading! In the afternoon Abby sat for hours and had part of her hair braided! She wanted it all over like Tabby but had to compromise to keep everyone happy!

In the evening, after Simon had returned from his talk we all went out for supper at a family from the church. It was lovely to be together again with them and to meet the two children they have had since we left. The children all played together happily and despite Abby having a huge skin flair up after the suntan lotion from this morning we had a good time and the children fell asleep within a minute of their heads hitting the pillow!

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