A total of 38 people showed up at Carey Baptist College in Penrose for our Summer Tramps Reunion. We
began to arrive at the college from 4:30pm, and at 5:30pm a yummy pot-luck BBQ dinner was served.|
We set up the chairs in the dining room ready for the formal part of the evening to begin at 7pm. First
of all we did a tour of the Otago area taking in the Catlins, Dunedin, Roxburgh and Alexandra visiting
such things as penguins, albatrosses, the country’s steepest street, bush tramps, museums and historic
goldfields, with the day-trips group. The show was presented in four parts by Barbara, Eileen, Joy and
On went our packs as we followed the pack-carrying group into the Ahuriri area,
with Phillip in the lead. A weather bomb had forced cancellation of two of the four trips, resulting
in several days in Wanaka staying in cabins, doing day walks, watching movies at Cinema Paradiso and
enjoying the hospitality of Gillian, a club member who now lives in Wanaka.
We mounted our pushbikes
to follow Ted along the whole length of the Otago Central Rail Trail from Clyde to Middlemarch oversighting
at Omakau, Wedderburn and Hyde.
Presentations were made to those who were in charge of the Summer
Phillip concluded the evening with devotions about loss. We are always losing things
on trips, and losing trips due to weather. Jo suffered bad loss, a little blue plastic spoon, she was
cut up. A couple lost their way at Breast Hill and also lost their lives. In a Forest & Bird magazine
a boy walks on a beach and finds that 90% of our lake, streams, birds, etc lost. Hundreds of people lose
their jobs each week. We have lost people to death such as Jennifer Blakely and Keith Hitching. Loss
is part of life, something we have to cope with, and always leads to grief. This is where the spiritual
dimension of our lives becomes important. We could quote heaps of scriptures - I came to seek and save
the lost (Jesus), What good is it to you to gain the whole world and lose your own soul (Jesus), Consider
everything as loss to the surpassing thing of knowing Christ Jesus (St Paul). The profit side - Jesus;
the loss side - everything else. St Paul was in prison while writing this. So long as we have Jesus everything
else is rubbish; everything is expendable except our relationship to Jesus. Meet Jesus and forget Him,
we lose everything. Never let go of Him, hold fast to Christ and for the rest be totally uncommitted.
Make God non-negotiable, make everything else negotiable. Eternal life is not just duration but also
quality of life, and will shape everything else, values, decisions, character, and direction.