Wednesday 20 June 2012

If not now when

Once upon a time there was an elderly lady who had a bone china tea set. She had a teapot, a milk jug, a container for sugar, twelve cups and saucers and side plates for biscuits and cakes. The individually hand-made items where white in color with beautiful red roses hand-painted as decorations and gold plating on the rims of the cups and plates. Although the set was quite old it was in pristine condition as if it had just left the factory; now long closed and out of business.

She loved that tea set and displayed it proudly in a glass-fronted cupboard in her living room.

She never used it because it was reserved for very special occasions. You know, just in case the Pope or the Queen might visit. Which of course they never did; nor were they likely to ever do. The old lady was very concerned in case an item would break or be chipped in use and the set would be incomplete and the damaged item irreplaceable

The tea set remained in the glass-fronted cupboard, admired by everyone who visited the old lady, and proudly loved by her whenever she looked at it.

One day the old lady died and her distant relatives, who never visited her when alive, sold all her belongings and used the money towards a holiday abroad.

When the old lady met St Peter at the Gates of Heaven, for that is where she was destined, the old Saint, who was used to drinking from an old clay cup when on earth, remarked casually “You never did get to use that lovely tea set, did you?”

“No!” she replied forlornly, “I saved it for a special occasion which never arrived!”

“Hmmm …” thought the Saint stroking his beard, “You also never got round to planting aubergines and courgettes in your garden. You always wanted to do that. But never did!”

“That’s right …” remembered the old lady, “Somehow I never got round to it. You know how it is … I was busy cleaning the house and things …”

St Peter chuckled quietly and added “Buon giorno!”

The old lady looked up at the tall man in total confusion.

He laughed and said, “Remember that winter when you promised yourself to learn Italian? You even bought a book and a dictionary, but never got to enroll at the local college for evening classes.”

“Yes … that’s right …” she replied shyly, “I wish I’d done that. Somehow the time was never right to start those classes. I would have enjoyed them too!”

An ominous silence followed and she wondered frightfully whether her omissions had somehow prejudiced her chances of entering Paradise.
“Do come in, my dear!” said the kindly Saint, “you know …” he added as he scratched his head, “it grieves me when I look down on earth and see so many people procrastinating and postponing doing something they set their hearts on.

“I watch and think … if not now, when?

“Somehow, people always have a reason for not doing something. When the Big Boss created the world for us He meant us to enjoy His creations, not postpone them and endure life!”

As she was led to her room in Paradise she discovered by her bedside the porcelain tea-set she once owned, two packets of aubergine and courgette seeds and an Italian dictionary.

The kindly Saint had given her a second chance to fulfill her dreams.


  1. Oh my, how wonderful your words. Gives me pause to ponder what it is I really want to do and then DO IT! Will reflect on that today...perhaps I'll prioritize that list!!! Thank you! Cathy

  2. This reminds me that I need to listen to that French language "cassette" program my husband gave me years ago. It's so old, its on cassette instead of CD. I could be listening while I'm drawing!

  3. Hello Cathy and Monica,

    We do often postpone doing something that we set our minds to; do we not? We always have a reason as to "not now"!

    There are so many things I wish I had done ... oh well!

    God bless you Cathy and Monica.

  4. I'm that little, old lady, Victor (only not quite so old, thank you! - oh, and we've never had a full dinner set for more than a week).

    But, at least, she made it to the Pearly Gates okay. I think I'd probably find something to distract me halfway there:-( Actually, it would probably be you, Victor, making me laugh so much that I fall off the ladder as I'm climbing up to Heaven:-D

    Oops, I forgot there's a serious point here - I'll go back to my spot and come back later, when I can keep a straight face:-D

    God bless, Victor:-)

  5. Ah Vicky ... Vicky ...

    One thing we must never put off is to remember to laugh and smile.

    I'm rarely serious ... much to some peoples' annoyance I suspect! You've a great sense of humour.

    I was asked at work: "Don't you take anything seriously?"

    I replied: "Important things, I do. For example, I'm very sorry for coming to work late this morning. I'll leave early to make up for it!"

    God bless.

  6. I'm serious, now....MWAHAHA!!!!!!

    Sorry, I'll be back...


  7. I wonder what Sue and Mary would make of this seriousness, Vicky.

  8. This is a beautiful interpretation of heaven. Thank you Victor!

  9. Victor,

    The problem with funny people being serious is that no one is ever certain whether they are really being serious or whether it is an act! Do you remember when you asked me how the FB feed worked? I thought everyone on FB knew all about this (how could you not know?) and so assumed you must have been joking. But you weren't... and then it was me who felt silly!

    I was thinking about the topic of doing things here on earth while I still have time, only this morning. I came to the conclusion I shouldn't worry if I don't get to do everything I'd like to because if those experiences are valuable I'll get to do them in Heaven (or if I don't get to do them, they will no longer seem important). But... doing things for other people or with others while I have the chance to do good... that is another matter. Yes, we must stop saying, "one day..." and never getting around to doing what we should do.

    God bless

  10. Hello Sue,

    You make two very good points.

    The first one: I always try not to be too serious because quite honestly there's already too much seriousness, and pain and suffering in the world for me to add to it with serious, well considered arguments. Of course, in business I have to be careful that my joviality (if there is such a word) does not jeopardise the situation.

    I still don't understand FB feed or FB per se. I only joined FB because I was advised by a serious person that to do so may attract a new audience to my website and blog. This has worked to some extent and I hope that by being funny someone somewhere may read my Blog and get to know about God in the process. I know from personal experience that God and Christianity are rarely mentioned in education and there are generations growing up not knowing a thing about their Creator.

    The second point: I regret that there are many things I would have liked to have done and didn't. Somehow, it was "never the right time".

    Thank you Sue for your well-considered comment. Someday, I hope, you'll tecah me all about FB.

    God bless.

    1. Victor,

      I am glad you are not serious. You are quite right: we need humour. I wasn't suggesting you change! I like the way you are.

      Yes FB can be a good way to attract readers to a blog. Did I see you have joined Pinterest too? If you have, you can tell me about it because I know absolutely nothing about it at all!

      God bless you.

  11. Hi Beautiful Whispers,

    I agree. I so hope that in Heaven we'd be able to do all the things somehow we never managed to do on earth.

    God bless you Beautiful Whispers and thanx for visiting me again.

  12. Hello Sue,

    You and me both! I too know nothing about Pinterest. I understand it is a "board" upon which you "pin" pictures, articles, or Blogs you have seen whilst travelling the Internet. So I "pinned" a few of my Blog posts here by typing the URL in the appropriate box.

    After that ... total mystery.

    I CAN of course see my Blog posts WHEN I LOG IN to my Pinterest account. But do other Pinterest members also see them? How? When? And how does the info appear on their Pinterest or FB accounts?

    Total mystery. One might as well tie a message to a homing pigeon's leg. At least then you get the satisfaction of eating the pigeon!

    God bless.

  13. Hi Victor,
    I read this story yesterday and tried to comment but Michaela kept interrupting me because we were about to leave to go strawberry picking. Please, oh please, don't ever lose your sense of humor :) I love reading both the stories and the comments here! (And Vicky, don't lose yours either. You and your sister make me smile and laugh all the time!)

    I don't really know much about Pinterest and am curious as to how it works too. I didn't realize you were on FB and am going on to find you right now :)

    God bless!

  14. Victor,
    I just sent you a friend request! I'm not very good with Facebook but I think I did it right!

  15. Hello Mary,

    A sense of humour is like wearing different colored socks. I do it all the time.

    The clever thing is; I have an exactly similar pair of socks in the drawer as the pair I'm wearing!

    I don't understand the point of Pinterest. It's like having a big notice board. You "pin" articles and photos you like under different "Board" headings. And you find them again when you log in. OK ... that's simple, and I can see it's use.

    Somehow ... others get to "see" and "follow" you - so they see what you have pinned. There's an option for making your "Boards" private; so only you can see them.

    FB ... just as confusing. Plenty of buttons to click. One moment I'm on my "site" then I'm on my profile, my newsfeed, other peoples' sites (how did I get there?), then onto somewhere else totally different and I can't find my way back to my FB pages.

    Guess what ... Sue has encouraged me to join Twitter. Not quite sure how that works yet, and why!

    I'll look out for you on FB.

    Heaven is a place without all these stupid contraptions. We'll communicate just by facial expressions. Now that's a laugh!

    God bless.

  16. Something tells me that "once upon a time" is really "once upon today"... in other words, it isn't make-believe!

    God Bless.



God bless you.