Tuesday, 13 April 2010
Not much time to blog this week but, I thought I would share a 'dittie' (short poem) with you that I learnt at school when I was about 11. For some reason it keeps going round and round my head at the moment...
Here am I with my four daughters
dead from drinking Cheltenham waters.
If I'd have stuck to Epsom salts
I wouldn't have been in these 'ere vaults.
I can't believe I can remember it from all those years ago. My class had to learn a poem, or two short ones, to recite in class and the winner was to compete against pupils from the rest of the school. I learnt two poems, although I can't remember even what the other one was about. But, I do remember that I went wrong on purpose as I didn't want to enter the competition. I had a fear of public speaking - God really does have a sense of humour sometimes!
Monday, 5 April 2010
I had a very puzzling Easter this year. It didn't quite take its normal form but was nevertheless very enjoyable on a number of counts.
I would normally go to church on Good Friday and then take part in the march of witness in Stroud. I have done this for years and have loved to join in the procession that winds its way through the town singing and praying at it goes. For the last 5 years or so we have also given away free hot cross buns to passers-by. It is so good to be able to interact with people along the way - both Christians and non-Christians alike. However, it has always struck me how somber we appear. Yes, Good Friday is about remembering Jesus' brutal crucifiction and there is a need to express this but, will this mood attract others to the church - no. Better perhaps to show the love of God, the joy of knowing Him and rejoicing over the victory of the ressurection. Christ has risen, Halellujah!
I have a very dear friend who lives in France but, also has a flat in Cardiff. This Good Friday I spent the day with her (alas not in France) catching up, hanging out, and mostly talking about our walk with God. I love the fact that we understand exactly what the other means without having to explain ourselves. We are very much on the same spiritual wavelength and are great friends, even though she is old enough to be my mum - lol (laugh out loud). Actually, I have a lot of friends who are around this age bracket. I'm not sure whether this is from hanging out in a church with an older congregation or that my siblings are nine/ten years older than me and age just does not register?
Whilst it seems strange to have missed the Good Friday service I had no doubt that I was in the right place. Sometimes God does unexpected things and asks us to trust Him. It is like God says, 'Walk with me a while.' and he takes you down this quiet path. You can hear a stream gurgling and a gentle breeze cools you in the heat of the day. You can smell lavender and the flowers that border the path; all seems well in the world. As the stream comes in to view you realize that God is with you - you feel and know his peace. A peace the surpases all understanding.
John was working Friday, Saturday, and Monday and we had every intention of making the most of our time together. Whilst we had planned to do things in the end we chilled out by putting our feet up in front of the TV and watching lots of films. Oh yeah... there was also the thousand piece jigsaw puzzle that took up most of Sunday. It was good not having to race around for a change. We had a very peaceful weekend. The church was packed on Easter Sunday and there seemed to be lots of new people and visitors - which was great. I love meeting and getting to know new people and ofcourse catching up with friends.
I am so blessed with friends of all ages and nationalities. Some I know better than others. Some share my faith, others do not. Some understand my calling, others less so, but they all suport me in what I am doing. That, I guess, is the nature of friendship. This Easter has been about friendship for me. Being there for friends who have needed my suport, meeting new friends, getting to know people better, spending time with God, and hanging out with John, my husdand, who is my best friend. We all need good friends to help us through tough times, to give us a hug when we are feeling down, to share in our excitement and rejoice in our triumphs. Sometimes life seems one big puzzle. It takes a while to work out what all the pieces are for and how they slot together. Indeed, sometimes you never do work out the meaning of all the pieces and events in life. Easter is my favour time in the Christian callender - a time for rejoicing. Easter is the piece in the jigsaw puzzle that gives the rest meaning and helps me to see the bigger picture. Easter is the piece in the jigsaw puzzle that brings me the most peace and the most joy.
I wonder what piece in the jigsaw Easter is for you?