Thursday, December 11, 2008

Corrected by my son!

Last night around suppertime my seven-year-old son and i were having a conversation about the importance of money. He is learning the painful lesson that all things cost money and that some people have no money and therefore no food, no toys ect.

After supper Jaco asked: "what is the most important things for people to have?" thinking in the line of economy i answered " food and shelter". It was at this moment that i was put in my place by my seven-year-old son when he looked at me and said: "no mom, God and love"

Tuesday, November 18, 2008


About a week ago i was looking around for some interesting reading material - something relating to the new area of ministry that i will be entering into ('Young Families Ministries Coordinator at Plumstead Methodist Church from January 2009) - when i came across this book by Nikki Bush & Graeme Codrington. I was so excited about this book that i decided to order it as it is not available in our little town yet. Yesterday however i met with Pete (my new boss :) ) for coffee and he decided that it would be good if i can read up a bit before i get to Cape Town. Guess what book he brought for me to read...

yip! "Future-Proof your Child"

So, if you don't hear much from my side in the next couple of days it is perhaps due to the fact that i am reading (and re-reading) the book. And yes, i will share some of my thoughts on this book as i go on.


Saturday, November 15, 2008

Ezra, inter-marriage and divorce

During the past few months, our fellowship group has been working systematically through the books of the Bible. We have been having great fun, and and have discovered God in new ways. On Wednesday night, we concentrated on the last chapter of Ezra. The nation has again sinned against God and "they have added to their guilt by marrying foreign wives". People are threatened with loss of property and excommunication and so all gather for an important meeting. At this meeting the inter-marriages comes under the looking-glass and the meeting decides to honor God and do 'the right thing' by sending away their foreign wives and their children born from these wives.

While their dedication and commitment, their true repentance, is commendable - i cannot help but wonder what God really though of that. I understand the theological impact of the inter-marriages and that it symbolizes the adultery and idolatry of the nation. But ... Was that His will, or was that man's idea of what would be pleasing to God?

Would love to hear some thoughts on this chapter.


Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Something is BUGGING me

The story starts in July 2008 already:

It is Holiday Club here at UMC, about 280 children from different walks of life have been together for four days and the 64 , very tired, leaders are having their hands full but all seems to go well and the kids seem to be responding well to the Gospel, except...

A group of 5 kids that seems to be related somehow are constantly fighting. They look like street children but they assure us that they have homes and families. One of them, the eldest, is bullying the other 4. We call them aside and talk and pray with them. They are sorry and will behave from now on.

Day 5 - the last day is over and we hear a scream outside: The eldest of the five kids has pulled a knife. We take the knife and call the kids in, one by one. She claims that the knife is for protection. She tells a heartbreaking story. Her little brother (or at least we think he is) tells the family history in a different way, still heartbreaking. We keep the knife and let them go, telling them that their parents can come to fetch the knife - they never do.

That night, we realize that the kids never really went home that afternoon. We feed them and offer to take them home, they accept the food and reject the lift home. Someone claiming to be their uncle picks them up.

Four months later

It is Sunday morning, amongst the many smiling faces at Sunday school i spot 5 familiar faces. They are wearing the same clothes as four moths earlier. They even join us for a cup of tea after the service. I am excited, maybe the seed that was planted at holiday club is starting to germinate...

over the next month they become regulars in the Sunday School. We still have no idea where they actually live. I start to notice that when i arrive on a Sunday Evening for our contemporary service - they are already there. Do they actually go home for lunch?

The are so at home now that they are beginning to bully the other kids, ever the older youth (who are very patient and tolerant) are beginning to complain that the 'street kids' are throwing them with stones. I call the kids aside, i talk to them once more (maybe they don't know better).

It is Sunday again, the kids again arrive at Sunday School, the old ladies are now beginning to get annoyed with these kids who wolf down everything that is meant for the congregation to share with their tea. I explain that they must have been hungry but that i will talk to them. At four that afternoon i arrive at the church the kids come out of hiding from behind the church but deny that they were there. Again they terrorize the youth (who are now beginning to loose their patience). During the service I find myself battling to concentrate on on the sermon that i am delivering as they keep moving around, giggling and throwing each other with berries.

After the service I call them together and explain that they are welcome but that there are certain kinds of behavior that is not appropriate. I try to be firm but 'nice' and tell them that the service finishes by 20h00 and that they have to arrange with their parents to pick them up at that time (the previous 2 weeks we took them to somewhere in the middle of the informal settlement - they still don't want us to see where they live - after it became clear that 'their uncle' is not coming).

Monday Evening, my day off - i quickly run into the church to pick something up. When i turn around, they are there. I feel awful but tell them that they cannot be there at that time.

Tuesday - youth cells. I open up at 17h00 so the band can practice - the kids sneak in. It is cold and rainy outside but I take a hard line and tell them that they need to go home before it gets dark. At 18h45 I realize that they are still there, again throwing the youth (who came for cell groups) with stones. I am angry - I take them out of the church and tell them that they are welcome on a Sunday, but this is the time for older kids. I tell them that i cannot allow them to hurt the other kids and if that continues, they will not be welcome...

I came home at about 21h30 last night feeling BUGGED about this... Surely the church could not tell anyone that they are not welcome. I heard Jesus saying: "Suffer the little children to come unto me" and i saw a picture of him chasing people who made it impossible for others to worship out of the church and it BUGGS me! it buggs me that there are kids who have no place to go on a rainly day other than an open church. It buggs me that i have gone so far as to tell these kids that they are welcome - conditionally. It bugss me that if i allow these kids to be there, others are not free to worship and focus. It buggs me that i suspect that things might start disappearing from the church if i do not set boundaries.

WWJD is becoming increasingly more difficult for me


Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Protocol Observed

It was a Saturday and, as often happens in the ministry, i found myself running from one meeting to the next:
* The first meeting was an informal meeting in a local coffee shop. There were no carefully planed agenda's and nobody was taking any minutes - simply a hand full of people who are involved in mission of some form or description. They came from different churches, organizations, cultures and socio-economical backgrounds. No one was 'in charge', each person sharing in a celebration of the work of God in the world.
* The second was an official church meeting, (and a very important one i may add) chaired by one of the influential ministers who holds a high office in the hierarchy of our church. This too was a meeting about mission. The chairperson was attempting to explain to the meeting (all ministers, pastors, preachers and leaders) that all people are set free to be in mission.

In the first meeting I found a sincere appreciation for the skills; the ministry and the lives of each other as we shared in each others joys, hurts, dreams and challenges. People were reaching out across the divides in an effort to reach a common goal. In the second meeting i found competitiveness, pride, jealousy and so much red tape that nothing that was shared will be implemented within at least three months of the meeting... but at least protocol has been observed

Monday, November 3, 2008

Give us today our daily bread...

Sitting in a coffee shop the other day, a friend asked:" What can i eat that is cheap and filling, but please don't tell me 'bread'! "

How often have i been in that place in my own life: "Lord, i want to be filled with Your Spirit, i want to know You more... But please don't tell me to spend more time and energy on my knees and with your Word"

Why do we settle for that which cannot satisfy? Why do we want the cheap and easy option Spiritually? Today i will ask for my Daily Bread and find it not in spiritual junckfood, but in "the Bread of Life".

Friday, October 24, 2008

opstaan - deur koos van der merwe

"mag jy mooi wees as die lelik verby is
en jy sag kyk na elke harde tyd
mag jy bly wees as die huil verby is
en jy vrede he na die stryd

verkeerde goed kom more weer reg
en die wyn is soet na die bitter en sleg

mag jy opstaan as jy seer geval het
en jou vrae verdwyn as die antwoord kom
mag jy huis toe kom as jy klaar verdwaal het
en die winter los vir die son

en mag jy droom, mag jy ook vergeet
en op plekke woon wat van horisonne weet

jy kan opstaan as jy seer geval het
en jou vrae verdwyn as die antwoord kom
jy kan huis toe kom as jy klaar verdwaal het
en die winter lost vir die son"

Thursday, October 23, 2008

pressing on

Those who know me well will know the journey that I have been on; know my struggle with a "superwoman" complex; know that I am a recovering-control-freak (with lost of recovery that still needs to take place); know something of my over-active sense of responsibility; know my fear of disappointing; my fear of the unknown... you might also know that about two weeks ago I resigned from my position as Youth Pastor in the Uitenhage Methodist Church.


I am on a new journey, leaving behind me many things that I have taken for granted for a very long time, stretching out into the uncertain future, but towards integrity... and wholeness. How i wish that i could declare as boldly as Paul: "Ek maak my los van wat agter is en strek my uit na wat voor is..." but truth be told, it is with shaky steps that i loosen my grip as superwoman to make room for ... just me. And yet, unsteady as i am in these new but strangly familiar shoes I know that nothing can seperate my from His love!

Saturday, October 4, 2008

From God - with love

So there i was walking around the boardwalk today with a heavy heart, worrying about all the things that tomorrow will bring, stopping with my son to watch a clowning act done by a local couple involved in clowning ministry....

First, let me interrupt myself by saying that over the last 3 weeks my soul has been crying out for some flowers and although i have seen numerous beautiful wild flowers on a hiking trip and a trip to the beautiful Cape, i was not satisfied - because they were not my flowers.

Anyway, so here i was, standing absentmindedly at a distance after the show when I heard the clown saying to my husband : "which way are you going now? i want to walk with you because i need to spoil your wife today. "

I must say, i was feeling a bit like Zacheus, sitting in the tree minding his own business, when Jesus stopped and said: Come down - for i am going to your house today...

So there in the busy boardwalk, the clown in his gentle way reminded me of the Holy Spirit being there, while making me this flower and saying that I need to remember Jesus' words in Luke 12:22-34 - and then he turned around and walked into the crowd

In that moment I swallowed hard against the lump in my throat: I have been feeling so unworthy of God's love, so tired of trying, so afraid of the unknown, so powerless, so ...
And here is God, speaking to me through the two things in life that i really don't enjoy - a clown and a plastic flower.

Today i bow in humility before my King: "i am weak but Tho are mighty..." and with the church throughout the ages I sing that oh so relevant hymn: "Guide me oh thou great Jehovah..."

Saturday, September 6, 2008

The Long and the Short of it

Earlier last week our church secratary (at least i think that is her official job description), asked me where my sparkel has gone ... I joked and said that once confirmation is over she can have anything she wants, even sparkel. Yesterday she came to me, with her gentle eyes that looks deeper than most, and asked since confirmation is now over when she could expect my sparkle to come back...

So here is the story - the long and the short of it:

I knew from an early age that i felt called into full-time ministry (at first i was thinking about mission). I did the whole running away thing for some time and studied high school education instead. In my final year i was confronted with the prospect of youth ministry and after having prayed long and hard about it made the change. I started out as a youth pastor and not long afterwords experienced a very strong called into what i believed was ordained ministry. I spend five years in youth ministry however before candidating for the ordained ministry. My first two years as a student minister was in the beautiful cape in a little place called Macassar (close to Somerset West in South Africa). Although this was a cross-cultural station i felt right at home and enjoyed every minute of my work there... and then out of the blue i got a call from the bishop to let me know that it was the decision from the presiding bishop that i have to move to Bloemfontein (do not go to those who need you but to those who need you most). So, with many tears, i left the beatiful Cape to go back to the place where i started out as a youth pastor. When I arrived i heard that they did not want me - but that i will have to do. I worked extremely hard trying to built up the 5 societies in my care and at the end of that year, i had the joy of seeing the fruit of my labour in that the two biggest societies were stable enough to each have their own minister now. What a joy to see the growth in a community that has not had the luxury of having their own minister for so long...

Unfortunately this was the begining of the end. I have stepped on many toes, been to vocal and with the added burden of ill health and the resulting academical miss step, i have finaly been discontinued from the ministry that I have put so much into. I left the ministry not having had the audience of either the bishop or presiding bishop and still in pain after a recent opp. My son was due to start School and we had to make some quick decisions. By the grace of God and with some help of friends we survived the two months without a stipend and without a place to really call "home". In Feb, i started in Uitenhage as a youth pastor, signing a 3year contract - so what is the problem?

I enjoy the young people and that while i enjoy the local church i find myself being highly sceptical of the church at large. I find the structures enslaving and the red tape limiting. I am beginning to wonder if i will ever be able to stand up in front of a synod again and declare that i believe and teach the doctrines of our church - not to mention adhering to its discipline. I cannot stay in youth ministry forever and i am pressuered from all sides to recandidate and go back into the same structure that spat me out only months ago. I find myself slipping into the role of minister all too easily when the need arises. I miss ministering through sacraments, i miss the diversity of the ordained ministry - but i cannot see myself going back into it.

I have a passion for people who do not fit the mould, for those who are sitting in the shadows. I long for a day when the church can truely be church and be set free from religion. I want to share the Good News of a God who loves, a God of grace, a God who is so much bigger than our understanding, a God who is real and oh so verry relavant. I long to show the other side of God. I have a passion for healing and reconciliation, I have a passion for young poeple and for showing a verry real alternative. I have a passion for God... But i do not know how or in what capacity to live this passion, this call. I am still to vocal, i still step on toes and my verry being goes against so much of what has become the expected mould that i cannot see a future for me in traditional church (he-he, perhaps that is why i get along so well with the youth).

Pray for me for clarity and wisdom as i urgently seek some direction on what it means for me to Be Under God's Supervision

Sparkelless bug

Friday, September 5, 2008


Every once in a while i fall into the trap of becoming completely self-absorbed. Since December 2007 my life and ministry has been a roller-coaster ride. While I have much to be thankful for, the struggle with my call and general circumstances have been eating away at my peace and joy (or rather, i have allowed it to...).
Today, i clicked on the 'next blog' button and came across this blog Suddenly my own struggles and issues have been put into perspective again. I have no idea why this post have touched me so much, but am grateful that it did. I do not say that my issues are all solved or that i know what to do or where to begin, but i do know that i have been too much of a worry-bug again (why is it that i never seem to learn in this regard) and resolve to get up from my ash-heap and wait on the God of Grace to reveal His plan and purpose to me.

So, excuse me as i get up from behind my computer to go and play with my precious 7-year-old.

Recovering worry-bug

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

where do i begin

Where do i begin....
where do i begin to pick up the pieces of my scrambled mind? where do i begin to make sense of that which is so loosely termed 'life'? where do i begin to find the next step if i am not even sure of the one that i am on? Where do i begin to dust the cobwebs that clouds my mind? where do i begin to cur away the scar tissue that darkens my heart? where do i begin to tear down that which has no foundation? where do i begin to die? where do i begin to live? where do i begin...

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Noah - faith or works?

last night i was rudely interrupted in a very interesting dream. I dreamt i was talking to someone (whom i cannot remember) who asked me if Noah was saved by faith or through works. i must probably add that the interruption was from my husband who was complaining because i was once again talking in my sleep.

This morning i woke up with this question in my mind. I suppose one can argue that Noah was saved by faith - for Noah trusted in God and therefore did what he was asked to do. On the other hand one could argue that he was saved by works for even if He believed that God was going to send a great big flood, he would still have died if he didn't built the Ark.

However, now that i am a bit more awake it becomes more clear: true faith always goes over into action. As James reminds us: faith without action is dead.

Moreover, i am being short-sighted: salvation is about eternity, yes it impacts on the here and now but it is about much more than our physical bodies and needs.

Perhaps though, we need more Noah-Christians, people who are willing to act on their faith, people who are willing to get their hands dirty...

I pray that God will lead me to be more like Noah in this regard

Tuesday, April 29, 2008


a friend of mine writes about the urge to run, an urge that i have felt so many times before. While reading her blog it struck me that i have been asking the wrong question all along. the question is not what/where i am running from but rather what/where i am running to.

hmm, i will have to give this some more thought

Wednesday, April 16, 2008


Today is one of those restless, windy days in Utenhage and my office ander the trees that is on other days a haven of tranquility is turned into a dusttrap. The sky is a brilliant blue and the sun is shining the trees and grass the grass are a radient green after the recent rains and still, this day is restless, this day is cold.

It causes my mind to wander...
How easily we can judge anothers life to say that they have it easy! like the weather here, looks can be so deciving...

in my previous blog i gave reflected on children who need and do not need and those who need most who am i to judge who need most? needs may differ, but needs are still needs. some of the most vibrant people i know are people with the deepest hurts. Experience have toaught me that it is often those who apear to be in the sun who have a great need for the Son.

i dream of a Christian society who will choose to look past appearances and who will love undonditionally. I dream of a church where all of my friends with all their peculiarities will be welcome and cared for - no matter which way the wind blows. I long for a a true jubilee when all will be set free: free from labels, free from pain, free from prejudice, free from the past, free from the judgmental looks and comments from other Christians, free to be who God created them to be, free...

The wind is still blowing en my next appointment is on the way so i guess i should sweep and dust my office one more time. Now if only i could sweep and dust my heart as easily...


Tuesday, April 15, 2008

"those who need you most"

last week i spend my mornings with a group of children from a currently disadvantaged background in a life skills holiday club. These children represent all races and gender and have seen it all and despite the pain, the neglect, the abuse and the violence that they have seen, felt and experienced - they are children with a great need for love, a great need for food, a great need for God and a great need to be needed. Worship with these kids was challenging and yet simple for they do not expect me to wow them with technology, impress them with skill or to be a step ahead of the latest trends. All they expected was for me to be present in the moment.

The group of leaders who worked will not be the first choice for any leadership team, they are not dynamic, not impressive, not even eloquent, but they are loving and caring and committed. They are perhaps closer to the team that God would have chosen...

This week, i am overseeing the preparations for another holiday club, this time for a very different group of kids with different needs and i find myself irritated with the superficial nature of our concerns, will be be able to out-do our previous holiday clubs, will the decor be professional enough? The team of leaders that will be chosen will be very different, only the best of those who applied will be selected and i cant help but hear Jesus saying "whitewashed tombs".

Despite my current crisis in calling i do know two things for certain:
* I still am called to have a preferential option for the poor, and
* I am still called to "do not go to those who need you, but to those who need you most"

i guess God is not finished with me yet...

Sunday, March 30, 2008

coffee-less coffee

When my brother was about five years old, he learnt to make coffee. He was extremely proud of this newly acquired skill (as coffee has always played a major role in our household) and decided to take our parents some coffee in bed. Now my mom used to have these big, dark brown mugs which made it very difficult to judge its contents early in the morning. Anyway, Dad takes his coffee with milk and sugar and took the first sip. He frowned a little but said thank you. Mom takes here coffee without milk and with no sugar and when she took the first sip asked in horror: "how much coffee did you put in" to which my brother sheepishly replied: "oeps, i forgot to put coffee in"

so why this story?

a friend of mine recently asked me what my greatest fear is, and while i have many fears i had to confess that ultimately my greatest fear is that i would only exist and never really live. Coffee without coffee is not coffee at all and i guess that life without the right ingredients is not life either. Milk and sugar are optional extras but you cannot have coffee without the water and the coffee itself. i am on a journey towards discovering which parts of my life are the optional extras and which are the essentials.

I know that Jesus is essential in my life if i want to have live (John 10:10) and that in abundance, and i believe that there are other things that are essential as well, like: being who i was created to be, living according to God's purpose for me and so on. The challenge however is to become me, stripped of all the masks and little lies that, over the years, i have told myself and others about who i am.

I have decided to allow God to take me through a process of pruning, becoming recklessly honest with myself, my God and others.

If becoming who i am drives people away, then maybe my interactions with those have been meaningless anyway. Becoming who i am means becoming who i was created to be and this includes some growing, some pruning, some molding and shaping. It does not give me an excuse to be hurtful or insensitive.

So pray for me as i continue on this journey.

metamorphosis bugs

Wednesday, March 12, 2008

"I will still be joyfull"

"Even though the fig-trees have no fruit and no grapes grow on the vines, even though the olive-crop fails and the fields produce no corn, even though the sheep all die and the cattle-stalls are empty, I will still be joyful and glad, because the Lord God is my saviour.
The Sovereign Lord gives me strength. He makes me sure-footed as a deer, and keeps me safe of the mountains." Habakkuk 3:17-19

I have no idea when to start, perhaps I need to start with me going back to youth ministry, not by choice but out of a painful experience that brought me here:
i never thought, not in my wildest dreams that i would go back to youth ministry, but i have found this last month as a youth pastor to be a healing and stretching experience. i have had to learnt to say "i will still be joyful". In the last three months i have probably grown more than in any other time in my life and though the experience was painful, the Sovereign Lord has kept me sure-footed on this rugged mountain.

Last week, my best friend were told that the company she works for can no longer afford to employ her - i am amazed at her strength which i am sure is God's strength in her - 'still i will be glad'

This weekend a friend have lost all security and been through an incredibly difficult time, but it has been amazing to see christian love in action as her friends rallied around to help - 'still i will be glad'

On Friday, after having walked about in pain for more than a week, i went to the doctor. It turns out that, not having rested well after a recent opp, there is some internal bleeding and a resulting abscess. God supplied me with a doctor who decided to treat me with no cost as my new medical aid only kicks in from April - 'still i will be glad'

On Saturday my sister went for a run in Cape Town and was attacked with a large rock. This happened at a place where there was nobody to help her, but the Sovereign Lord gave her strength so that she would not fall and suffer a worse fate and sure-footed so that she managed to run to help. he supplied the help in the form of a group of cyclists who helped - "still i will be joyful and glad"

Today i learnt that a school friend, the only one i actually keep in touch with, will have to have his only kidney removed. He is in urgent need of a transplant - 'still i will be joyful and glad'

Yesterday i sat with a young girl who has been through much more in her short life than i have and her words to me was :"i don't always understand or even agree with what God does or allows, but He is God and I will always serve him, and him only".

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

thou shalt not be succesfull

I have been watching 'As it is in Heaven' again today and i was wondering: Why is it that the church (or Christians) find success so threatening?

I have seen it so many times in so many different towns, so many different churches, so many different organizations and lives - we ask people to do something for the church or for God, we expect them to get on with it and we complain if they don't. However, if they do get on with the job at hand and do it really well, we will find a reason why their success is not good and why their services should be terminated. What exactly is it that we are so afraid of. Why are we so insecure that the success of other Christians cause us to question their motives? Why can we not celebrate each other's ministries and success? I am saddened by the destructiveness of this tendency amongst God's people.

I do realize that this is an over-generalization, as not all churches; not all ministers; and not all Christians are like that. I am currently working with a superintendent who celebrates victories with me - what a blessing! I have seen organizations working together and Christians being happy for and with one another. It seems however that this is the exception and not the rule.

In my own life i have often noticed that things goes banana-shaped the moment that i forget that i am part of a body and start acting as if i am the body. Perhaps the same is true in the church as a whole and that we need to be reminded of our interdependence in a world and era of independence. Is this perhaps why Paul says: 'his power in me is greatest when i am weak' ?


Saturday, March 1, 2008


Ever noticed the difference between solitude and loneliness? You can be with lots of people and be extremely lonely and yet you can be all on your own but not lonely at all. Today I am home alone, but not lonely, in fact I am so very content just being me right now. I decided to stay home today (because I have work to do and a sermon to finish) while the two men in my life decided to go out and do the bush-thing. I did not realize however, not until now, how much I needed time on my own.

Jesus had this habit of withdrawing from the crowd and yes, even from his disciples. Why then is it that I still think that I, a mortal human being, can do without it?

How at peace I am here in my office, over-looking our shady garden where my cat is basking in the sun and my dog is chasing a butterfly. The song of the birds fills the air and the gentle breeze carries the sweet scent of the big old Jacaranda tree with its delicate purple flowers. It feels like I can burst into a Psalm of praise like David of old.

For the first time this week I am not rushing to pick-up, drop-off, to lead or be lead, to keep an appointment or to meet a deadline. For the first time this week I am free to experience the warmth of the Son. For the first time I don’t have to watch the arms if the clock while praying. So I resolve that this year I will make sure that I have regular times like these where I can be alone so that I will not be lonely…


Thursday, February 28, 2008

a bug's life

A story is being told of two caterpillars who were strolling around in the garden one morning. The two friends spotted a butterfly in flight when one remarked: ' you will never catch me in one of those, not even if you paid me'

It has been about a month since my last post and in that month so much have changed. the life cycle of a bug has taken place once again - the chrysalis process of seaming death and rebirth; of transformation; of pain-and-hope; and ultimately of new beginnings! There has been the odd occasion where i heard myself say: 'you will not catch me in youth ministry, not again' . I have mentioned in one of my previous posts that i firmly believe God has a sense of humor and so guess what i am doing ... Yip, i am back in youth ministry (well, mainly youth ministry) and the scariest part is that i am actually enjoying it.

So here i am, the same bug with different (perhaps more funky) spots. i am certain that this is where i have to be for now, and tho the process was painful, the growth that lies in this process has been significant. i am curious to see what the ultimate plan and destination is, but for now - i am enjoying the journey.

traveling mercies friends
(being under Gods supervision)

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

"like children"

Oh how often I have read the words of Jesus "unless you become like children" and yet, i still have not discovered the full richness of these words. It is now, watching my own child sleeping so peacefully that i discovered yet another little peace of this amazing truth:

As a family, we have been through an extremely turbulent times with lots of insecurities, hurts and frustrations. Till recently i have always boasted of my ability to fall asleep whenever my head touches the pillow, but in the last three weeks i have had many a sleepless night - stressing and worrying about things beyond my control.

Getting back to my sleeping child...

Even though he is aware of most of the worries and difficulties that faces us right now, my son has as attitude of: 'Well, i have prayed about this' and 'i trust mom & dad' and so he has been laughing, playing and sleeping - enjoying the adventure. Yes he has been frustrated at times, and yes he is missing the familiar sights and faces of those we love but he trusts unwaveringly that all will be okay.

I need to learn to trust more like him, to say: 'Well i have prayed about that and i know that my heavenly Dad will take care of me and so i can laugh, play and sleep and see this as a great adventure' ... if only i can become like a child again!

When is it that we loose our trust and faith, when is it that we become too cautious to become excited about that which we know our Heavenly Father can do, about His love and care for us?

Having spent the last to hours frantically trying to find my own solutions i hear God saying: Martha, Martha, you tail and trouble so, but only one thing is needed...

So this is me saying goodnight to go and practice becoming like a child again...

Saturday, January 5, 2008

the parrable of the fallen pencil

A friend of mine tagged me to write the parable of the fallen pencil and I in turn would love to see what rock, gus, barry and the guys will do with it.

Here goes mine:

there once were two pencils: a beautiful upright conventional pencil and a rubbery pencil that seemed to lack backbone. Nothing about this pencil was conventional and it would certainly not be allowed in the grade 1 class where everything has to be proper and up to standard. The conventional pencil always looked down on the rubbery pencil and despised him for being different. Much to the dismay of both these pencils, they ended up together in a little boy's pencil bag.

One day, the little boy, in the carelessness of youth, dropped the pencil bag and both pencils fell painfully to the ground. When eventually they were picked up again, the little boy saw that the beautiful upright pencil's point was broken, so he started sharpening it, but no matter how much he sharpened the pencil, it's point kept falling out. The pencil's lead was broken inside and it has lost its usefulness.

In life we are often much like these pencils, some of us are beautiful, upright, conventional people who expect everyone else to fit into our 'conventional' way of thinking and doing things. Some of us never quite fit into the 'conventional' category and my feel unworthy at times. However to survive life's up's and down's - to survive life's falls we need to be a little more flexible, more open to change. It is often our uniqueness that makes us useful in God's hand.