Well, December has come and gone.
I will do a Monthly report later this month as many exciting things happened during the month but the event that turned the apple cart over happened on the 29th.
While Steve and I were out at the Miranda wildlife sanctuary, photographing the birds, our wagon was broken into and all my camera gear was stolen, leaving me with nothing other than what I had on me at the time which was borrowed from Steve.
To come back to the wagon and see the windows smashed and all our gear gone was a blow I was not prepared for.
The car park was a private one and one we trusted.
But sympathy is not the point of this post.
We had to go back home, cutting our trip away, off halfway through in order to get the wagon fixed.
I was devastated at the loss as I have no insurance for my gear, its just too expensive to maintain.
As I sat alone in my flat I began to let the word dribble out to my close friends and read and listened to their sympathetic, responses but one man, a fellow Christian who has been a great teacher and mentor over the years helped me to see what really mattered and what really did not.
His talk took me back to another teacher who had a great influence in my life.
This is what I learnt from him.
In 1929 in the United States, the market crashed and lost $16 billion worth of market capitalization.
Many wealthy and affluent people found it impossible to cope with and jumped out of high story buildings to their deaths.
Their lives were measured by the financial wealth they had made over the years rather than something else much more important, which I will get too in a minute.
Firstly I believe every person born into this world has a purpose and along with that purpose is a basic set of skills to help that person fulfil that purpose.
It’s up to us and our parents initially, to some degree, to discover those skills in a safe protective family environment and later as the child grows we must move on and get to work to grow and develop those skills throughout our lifetime and for those skills to be a blessing to God, ourselves and others around us.
In many cases and in the cases of those rich affluent people the real wealth is not in the end product however but in the learning process.
Because the end product is exactly that, a product, it can be taken away, lost, destroyed or wear out.
However, the skill learnt during the process cannot, this is the real wealth.
Those skills can be used to start again either in this life or the age to come.
Those people who jumped out of windows failed to see the real wealth, others did not. They used their wealth of knowledge and skill to rebuild their fortunes.
So back to me, what was lost to me and what was not?
It was true I had lost all my gear, the camera I had with me at the time was borrowed, I had nothing of my own left.
But I still had my skills, my connections, my friends and my loved ones in the photographic community.
Cameras can be replaced, borrowed or swapped.
My skills cannot.
As a teacher and encourager, I am able to share my true wealth with others.
The gift of encouragement cannot be taken away from me, it’s mine, given to me at birth, its mine to grow and share with others, it gives pleasure to others and is greatly rewarding to me and my Father.
Sometimes it takes a bit of a blow to the head or the heart to make one realise what is important and what is secondary, sometimes we take the most important things for granted.
Bless you, peoples heaps and heaps.
This year we had a chance to study and watch the Marsh Crake, a bird few people ever get to see.