In many ways I grew up in London. Not literally. The first time I went I was 19, had just met Jesus in such a transformative way that He seemed real and was in college there. But in other ways I did my first growing up there, met my English family who have all been so significant and continue to be so significant in who I’ve become and net my wife.
When I met David, he was then pastor of the muswell hill baptist church. He was the father of three kids, the oldest Philippa was my age. The twins around 8. Mary the mom and David’s wife was this joyful, laughing, friendly, welcoming woman who was happy to include me in their home. In London I fell in love both with Karen, whom I married three years later, and with London itself. The combination of the adventures with Karen, fresh experiences of love, around the city and the beginning friendship with David cemented London as part of my dna. My heart.
David and I are still great friends at 82 and 56 and his and my family have expanded to include more children, grand children and great grandchildren if you count the children of my kids who consider David like a grandpa.
I’ve been privileged to travel to England many times over the decades since that first visit in 1978. Most recently in November 2015. And in this most recent visit David and I visited the famous hamley’s toystore in regent street.
In front was this bear and there’s always a worker there welcoming you. David was receiving instructions to look at the camera here which I love. David was too taken with chatting with the bear to notice I was taking a picture!!
David is an “in the moment” kind of guy. He lives the moments of life fully. Now. He was interested in the person trapped in the bear outfit. He was connecting with a real person. Pictures were not on his priority list – and if you do take one, include the feet!😄
David told me this time– “remember to connect with people in life, chat with them, notice them”. Sometimes in life we can miss the moments given because of the manner in which we live them. Perhaps we are meant to connect with this store clerk not just get on with our day.
I am a guy who has been transformed by such encounters — like mine with Davud that began with me walking into that particular baptist church on a Sunday in the fall of 1978. He took time to build a connection and the rest is history…