Shhh. Don’t tell anyone. It’s a secret.
Tonight I’m doing something silly. But it’s worthwhile. My brother, who lives in Liverpool, graduated with a master’s degree in Social Work this week and my Mum mentioned that they were going out for a family celebratory meal tonight.
Of course, I’m not expected. I mean – they’re in Liverpool and I’m in Coventry. And tomorrow is our Annual Church Convocation (big busy meeting in Northampton all day). Liverpool and back in one evening is 3½ hours driving. It would be silly.
But I’m going to do it. As one of my closest friends put it, ‘It may be silly; but that doesn’t necessarily make it stupid’.
It’s all planned with my fellow-conspirator mother: I turn up outside the restaurant, phone my brother, congratulate him, ask him what he’s doing to celebrate. As he answers, I say ‘What a coincidence, I’m there too’, as I arrive at the table in the restaurant! Poetry!
It’s done me good to have an opportunity to demonstrate my love for my brother. Being a busy Christian leader means I rarely get a chance, at least in such a demonstrative way. And that’s fine – Jesus said plenty about how true commitment to Him would cut across natural ties.
But I’m relishing this opportunity just to say (in the actions that speak louder than words), ‘I’m really proud of you – and I love you’.
(As for tomorrow: I’ve made a mental note not to be tired and irritable and certainly not to let my wife pay for my northward jaunt! God’s grace is sufficient...)