This week's count your blessings focuses on shelter. Yesterday a further earthquake was reported in Japan, a country still in shock and disarray following the previous earthquake and Tsunami. I cannot imagine how that technologically rich and relatively prosperous nation is managing to hold together when there has been so much loss of life and devastation. It is a reminder for all of us of the fragility of the world and the temporal nature of all we surround ourselves with, including bricks and mortar.
It is hard for my generation and those younger to envisage destruction over such a wide scale, earlier generations - those who lived through the two world wars particularly - probably understood much better the preciousness of life and possessions and as a result valued both (and the little things) much more. Following the Haiti earthquake in 2010, more than 2 million people became homeless, families of 12 people or so lived in single rooms for months after. It is good during Lent for us to reflect upon all that we have, I wonder what it would be like to be alive and have no possessions? What would be left if everything was taken away?
The provision of food and shelter is every one's right and necessity. On a day like this I feel guilty living in the house I do. I give 10p for each of my 11 large rooms and think of the 100 needy people across the world who could find shelter under my roof.