Day 60-62 Portsmouth, England

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Every tour has low-lights and highlights. The Bank Holiday long weekend in Portsmouth is a highlight. The weather is calm, warm and sunny. The trees are in splendiferous bloom and the English sky is actually vivid blue. It has been a long time coming but the English warn me, it won’t last long. It doesn’t last long. BUT I am grateful that I can make (spiritual) hay while the sun shines over the weekend. I share in a Sunday morning service and a Monday evening concert at church. Both are anointed, both events touch hearts and I feel privileged to have visited such a warm fellowship where the singing is full-throated and whole-hearted and the acoustics good. I judge the success of events such as these by the feedback received, though mindful to contextualise the ministry by realising I won’t always see the fruit of the seeds sown.

I stay with Pastor Tracey Ansell and husband Steve. They are a very dedicated and committed couple with a good range of personality/ministry gifts and skill sets to serve the local Baptist church and impact majorly the local community.  It has been a blessing to have been here, but as always looking ahead to the next place on the itinerary.

I recall a piece I wrote in my first book of poetry (‘Don’t Let Poor Nellie Starve’) entitled Dreaming Leaving which is a poetic monologue on the fact I struggle with belonging anywhere. And why I continue to seek a definition of who I am. These thoughts and emotions crowd my mind. Why? Tomorrow I will visit my birthplace, but what in all honesty can I expect? The brutal truth is, this will be a non-event and so I’m setting myself up for the inevitable disappointment.

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