Monday, December 12, 2005
Log, and Prologue
I have never been a diarist, although I am a writer. I have been writing all my life – sermons, mostly, and more recently books related to the writing of sermons – but only in the last few years have I determined that writing is a fundamental part of my vocation. I feel, somehow, it is essential that I commit to paper (or, at least, to the purposeful arrangement of electrons that is a computer hard disk) some reflections. I do this as much for myself as for anyone who may subsequently read this words.
The mariners of old used to keep a ship’s log – the heart of which was a series of numerical readings recording the repeated progress of a piece of wood, cast from the bow and floating back towards the stern. These readings measured the ship’s progress. Perhaps this document is a sort of ship’s log for my life, or at least this episode of it. Is it progress I am logging, or is it regress? Time will tell.
The ship’s log of old was typically read (if it was read by anyone at all) by some aide to a superior naval officer, after the voyage was completed. The superior officer himself read only the pages that included something of true significance. Most ship’s logs are of little historical interest, being routine notations of numerical data and occasional observations of other phenomena. Perhaps this may be a similar document, in that respect. Yet it may also happen that some thoughts and observations may emerge that will be useful to others in their life’s journey. It is this that starts me to writing.