Saturday, 3 November 2012

Busy Doing Nothing

Usually I am quite cool about what I am doing. I know my getting up time and my going to bed time (though they do seem to be getting closer and closer together). I know when I am to say Mass and when I am to say my prayers. I know when my lessons are (though still some take me by surprise, like when I thought I was on my way to teach Brevet Mathematics and it turned out to be first year religion!). I know when I have a gap in my day to go to chapel and sit down by myself. To my shame the latter is not as often as it should be.

But it is an odd thing to have enforced doing nothingness.

I'm sitting at Southampton Airport and my flight is delayed two and a half hours. I've said my prayers. I'm putting off my Robert Ludlum novel (I justify it by persuading myself that because it is in French it is improving my vocabulary. That might be true but I'm not entirely sure when I'll use such espionage based words - actually no, scrub that: first year religion, that's when I'll use it).

But here I am " busy doing nothing" as the song from "A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur's Court" so proudly proclaimed.

Even this blog post will soon come to an end. I can't bang on for another two hours. I can try...

At times like this my mind naturally floats to the metaphysical poet George Herbert. This pretentious statement belies the fact that I really do not like poetry (a fact that the English master and I often come to blows over). But one bit sticks in my mind. "Bit": technical term for a bit if poetry.

"A servant with this clause makes drudgery divine. Who sweeps a room as for thy cause makes that and the action fine."

This means that no matter what you're doing if it is done for the honour of God then it is good and beautiful and true. All can be turned to the worship of God, a worship that is His by right.

This is hard. Hard when you're sitting in an airport, but much harder on the normality of daily life with a dull job and dull chores. Sweeping a room, doing the dishes, driving to work, watching daytime TV.

But they can all be turned into a song making our soul sing to join in the infinite majesty of God's creation. The creature in harmony with his creator. Our voice blending with the music of the spheres and the wing beats of the angels.

So I'm off for a bacon sandwich to do my bit for the glory of God.

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