It is quiet round here. No traffic during the day. Few casual callers. And everyone I meet is very busy, including me.
So the last Thursday of the month will be, starting today until Easter as an experiment, a quiet day. Fax and phone unplugged. Computer off.
I invited anyone who wanted to join me to come round for the middle part of the day for some peace. Six did.
In case people are wondering what happens, here is my briefing letter to today's guests:
Quiet Day January 2007
Welcome to the first of what I hope will be a series of quiet days here. As it is the first you are, to some intent, being experimented upon. Please let me have any feedback at the end which will help me improve it.
After the initial drinks feel free to help yourself to coffee, tea, juice, biscuits, fruit or cake at any time of the day. I suggest using the electric kettle rather than the hob one to avoid the whistle.
In the quiet times find yourself space in the house wherever you can. There are two bedrooms available upstairs for privacy (sleep if you want). I have left the doors closed on rooms I would prefer you not to use. If you use a bedroom just close the door to indicate it’s in use. Leave the door open when you leave. There is a toilet by the front door and another upstairs.
The front door will be on the latch all day. Go straight on down the road opposite to reach open countryside or wander the pavements and pathways. The programme will be as follows:
10.00 a.m. Coffee and chat
10.30 a.m. Introduction, Prayer, Bible Study
11.15 Quiet to think, pray, walk.
13.00 Lunch together
14.00 Bible Study and chance to share
15.00 Tea and finish
I will indicate the end of quiet by putting some music on.
Please do not try to engage in conversation in the house during the quiet, however weird that may feel. You have permission to ignore each other. If two people feel they must talk then go for a walk together. I will be in my study (off the kitchen) in the quiet if you need anything. Talking to me is fine. Books and Bibles to borrow are on the conservatory table. I have no further appointments today. Stay to debrief if you wish.
Hope you enjoy it.
I decided to work through Mark's Gospel - the gospel of a man in a hurry we might sub-title it - and we did chapter one today.
Like the once a month dinner party idea I may throw it open wider than the Christian community to see if there is interest. I may also change the day of the week after Easter if I continue since some people may never be able to make Thursdays.
Let's see shall we.