I have a had a little exchange of emails lately about going to the school reunion. I have been to the last two but my problem is that not having really enjoyed secondary school, nor thrived there, and having had a bit of a checkered career I always feel a bit ill at ease. I listen to the stories of success and know what big pensions some of my old school pals are on.
One particular boy I met barely acknowledged me although I went through primary and secondary school with him. He had done well in architecture and was obviously rather pleased with himself. God forgive me but I found him rather pompous.
I found the people who had struggled in life more interesting and especially those who had had some major setbacks like severe illness. They seemed more accessible and empathic. Even though they may not have had a walk of faith they had experienced suffering and therefore had the capacity to sympathise. Mercy cannot exist apart from suffering St Augustine wrote.
The dramatic changes that age has made to my old school colleagues reminded me of a quote from that other theological heavyweight, Bruce Willis ‘Life is hard and then you die.’
You have put more joy in my heart than they have when their grain and wine abound Psalm 4.7