As I begin semi-retirement after 36 years as a doctor in the UK National Health Service it is with mixed feelings. I plan to still work a full day a week to maintain contacts and help cash flow. There are things I will not miss-the irresponsible, self-destructive, demanding, inappropriate attending public, for one thing, the occasional lack of diligent nursing and stocking and maintaining of equipment on the other, and finally the few world-loving, foul mouthed staff and patients.There were the positives-the thanks and appreciation shown by staff and patients and the satisfaction of doing your best to alleviate people’s misery. But some folk love to be dependent and miserable!

Retirement and I am sure unemployment (which I have never experienced thankfully) has great temptations-without the discipline of having to get up and go to work it would be easy to become lazy, self-indulgent and waste hours watching a screen or reading rubbish (we don’t actually have a TV) or on the internet. May God give me plenty work to do. A Christian is never retired from his battles against world, flesh and devil till he enters glory and God always has a purpose for him or her in His church.

I have a church building to be caretaker of, a mens’ Bible study to lead, a family to head, a body to keep and writing and reading projects to advance as this new phase of my life begins.I trust it will issue in glory to Him alone who is the ‘health of my countenance and my God’. (Psalm 42:11):)