8:13 I ran out of the door, slightly later than planned. Quickly across the first pedestrian crossing before being halted by the second. I saw the train pulling into the station, released by the green light I ran up the stairs and dived in the doors of the 8:14 train. Changing trains at St Davids I boarded the 8:40 train to Bristol Temple Meads. I like trains because they enable me to travel and work or rest. This morning I was feeling fairly alert and so after spending a little time in Lamentations I was able to make a few phone calls and edit my notes for a talk at Bath CU next week.
Just after 10am we arrived in Bristol. Birthplace of my wife and the city where we were married. Ahead of me a 3 mile journey. I was tempted to get the bus but wanted to drop into the Wesley Owen on the way, and with a day sitting in meetings I figured a bracing walk would be good for me. Bristol unfortunately has several big hills. Halfway up the hill and away from the bus route regret and hindsight aren't very helpful.
Heading for an address on a long road is tricky, I hit the road a somewhat down hill from my destination, reaching the OMF offices by just after 11am. Laura greeted me at the door, a former colleague of my wife, and swiftly supplied me with a coffee. This was a meeting of the UCCF South West Missions Partnership. Eight mission agencies partnering with UCCF, laying aside their own agendas to promote the cause of world missions in Christian Unions. Technically I'm co-chair but I entered my first meeting very ignorant of what was involved. The group meets twice a year to review and prepare. It was good to hear back from Summer Teams and 'Go Global Roadshows'. The highlight was the story of Steve being waylaid at a Missions evening six months ago by a non-Christian and then being told by another member of the group that the girl has since become a Christian. God delights to interrupt our plans!
Next up was a meeting with Nathan Smith from Grace Church Bristol. Nathan is a gospel-loving Sovereign Grace Ministries pastor. SGM pastors only meet in Starbucks, which wasn't really a problem for me. We had a couple of very encouraging hours together talking gospel stories and church partnership. We then got a little stuck in traffic on the way to the station. I would have missed my train, except it was delayed by 45 minutes.
Tuesday was a rare 'Three Block' day and concluded with the freshers week meeting of the Exeter CU at which Nigel Styles was speaking and we sang some cool songs like From the inside out. Met a number of people including Joe, Tim, Scott, Suzanne and several of the CU leaders. Returned home, enjoyed a warm relaxing bath, reading a review copy of Celebrating Life that Becci sent me. Checked email which was a mistake, I should have gone straight to bed.