Monday, 14 August 2017

Stick to the boat

The Lord didn't promise everyday would be good...
but there is something good in everyday.

In a discussion via messenger with my cousin recently she ended our chat with a saying that our uncle frequently quoted.  I responded back to her that that just might be the beginnings of a blog soon.  So in essence my cousin is the inspiration.  Given the struggles that my cousin and  her extended family is currently facing daily it is a good mantra to remind everyone to look for the good in each day.

Yesterday the gospel of Matthew had another beautiful passage to reflect on.  Each year as the cycle of readings come around I try to find something fresh to say about the story or to find a new perspective from which to look at the story.  Matthew tells many stories, harsh, witty, poignant. Yesterday's was the story of Peter's attempt to walk on water.  In the past I have reflected on the walking on the water, the words of Jesus "do not be afraid," but yesterday I reflected that Jesus did not ask Peter to get out of the boat and attempt to go it alone.  When he made the attempt to go it alone with out the support of his fellow disciples he began to sink.  We are called to step out in faith but not to step out of the boat!

Whether like Peter the group around us is it a motley band of searchers, a community of faith, family and friends this passage reminds us that it is this supportive group that helps keep us afloat so that we are able to weather the storms of life.  More importantly the passage also reminds us that despite the perils that we endure Jesus comes to us in the storms and helps bring about calm if we are willing to receive the hand that he extends to help.

So there will definitely be storms in life, we will sometimes find ourselves challenged, shaken to the very core of our being and yet we are reminded that we do not journey alone we have a community that helps keep us from sinking and we have Jesus who will help bring calm in the chaos.  And while we may not always have good days we will always have moments and memories from each day that are good.

It is a huge danger to pretend that awful things do not happen. But you need enough hope to keep going. I am trying to make hope.
Flowers grow out of darkness.
Corita Kent

Sunday, 6 August 2017

Enjoy the simple things


The setting sun

One of the things I have been noticing lately are the encouraging words of enjoying the simple things in life.  These are simple words but convey a wealth of meaning.  Life is often busy and as a result we often overlook the simple things, the beauty around us and the joy that we can find in the ordinary.

This evening I was pestered by my two furry beasts to go for a walk.

 It is pretty much a daily event once it cools down (28 C is too hot for these guys but the evening is much nicer). So about 8pm the runners go on and we are off.  With the reminder to enjoy the simple things  the walk was pleasant and pleasurable.  We saw bunnies zipping along, geese marching off like little soldiers, ducks paddling, lots of other people and pets walking.  We avoided water sprinklers, much to Gandalf's dismay and Copper's delight.  The setting sun was also spectacular.   The prairies never disappoint when it come to a spectacular sunset with the endless sky and flatter than flat plains. With the setting sun and a drop of  three degrees in the temperature we had a lovely walk in the area and enjoyed the scenery.

Today at church the reading was familiar, the feeding of the five thousand.  Rather than focus on the miracle of the abundance I focused on the interruption of the private time that Jesus was seeking and how in the interruptions the ministry of presence and listening is experienced as well as moments of grace, blessing and opportunity.  Busy lives mean we often do not like to be interrupted and want  to stick to the schedule and yet when we pause, allow the interruption we experience some of the best moments of ministry, of presence that we can ever hope to enjoy and that interruption sometime includes the joy of the beauty around nature and in the people we encounter.

So enjoy the simple things that life has to offer, allow the interruptions to enrich you in a multitude of ways and know that you are both a blessing and blessed because of the richness of the experience.


Duck and squawking geese at the man-made neighbourhood pond


"The great thing, if one can, is to stop regarding all the unpleasant things as interruptions of one's 'own' or 'real life'. The truth is of course that what  one calls the interruptions are precisely one's real life -- the life God is sending one day by day. "   C. S. Lewis