Good Morning from a chilly Northern Ireland. A particularly chilly Northern Ireland as our heating boiler packed in earlier this week, meaning we’ve been slowly freezing to death, huddled around electric radiators and under mountains of blankets. We’ve been waddling around like Eskimos in multiple layers as the gales howled outside. The highlight of the day was going to bed at night. Disappearing under the covers to be greeted by the welcoming embrace of the electric blanket.
Yesterday four plumbers toiled in the cold, wet conditions for hours to fit the new boiler. Eventually the switch was flicked and heat gradually filled our radiators. Hooded tops and thermal socks were cast aside and hot water flowed from taps as we rejoiced, vowing never to take simple pleasures such as heat, light and food for granted again. Yes, the plumbers were well paid, and supplied with hot drinks, biscuits, burgers and chips but they still went beyond the pale for us.
I later learnt that one of them had recently suffered a family bereavement but still came to work today because he was told we had a disabled daughter and heating Hannah’s downstairs extension was a must for us. The guy could easily have taken the day off and we’d have perfectly understood but he came to work as he wanted to help a family in need. I was blown away by the compassion of this rough, tough tradesman. It was an act of love and compassion.
I doubt very much if this guy is a churchgoer. He might not pray or have ever opened a Bible in his life but his actions would put many self-professed Christians to shame. Would I have done the same things in his shoes? I’m not so sure. But I’ll never forget his act of kindness and, as well as warming the frozen tundra of chez Black, he also warmed my heart. If Jesus walked the earth today he would probably be a plumber, fitting heating boilers for hapless families. Wet, cold, dirty work. That’s where he is in his element.