I drove past Open House today on the way to pick up some stuff for our charity shop - it brought back a Patrick memory..
I walk with Patrick – we’re on our way to Open House a mental health drop in centre with music therapy. We talk complete nonsense as we make conversation about Saddam, wooden submarines, Chelsea losing to Arsenal, Tony Blair and Tim Henman.
This is our first visit to Open House and it is beautiful. The staff offers respect, tolerance and patience. We look in on the woodwork and art sessions – but settle for the Music therapy group.
Simon the therapist soon has Patrick playing the piano. I sit and watch the therapist "shall we play a duet?" he asks Patrick. Then a miracle, the dreadful noise that Patrick makes is skillfully woven into something beautiful. Patrick knows. He can feel that he is creating. His eyes glaze over. Smiles. Something happens inside me as I look at the picture before me – Patrick champion nonsensical scavenger of market rubbish is creating something beautiful. He is experiencing a wholeness that he has not felt before. Unforgettable!
"I sing too". Simon looks at Patrick ‘with kindness "so what do you want to sing?". Patrick puffs out his chest, lifts his chin "I am going to sing Elton Johns 'Candle in the wind!'"
I think I saw a sight of salvation that we don’t often see or talk about in evangelical circles – it was beautiful.