Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Little Things

Yes, life is often about the big all singing-all dancing stuff, but sometimes, its the little things that make you smile.

My current favorites from the last few days...
  • having forgotten, being reminded how Profound Admirer has THE most comfortable sofa in the world
  • major excitement over new tech toys in the shape of Jim The Drummer's new Kit
  • how much hot chocolate and late-night bonding with the Landlords of Dreams can make me feel at home
  • how exciting impulsive plans are, particularly if they involve Monkey's burgers
  • also being reminded how truly adorable Profound Admirer's little one is now she's in PJs with a little duvet all of her own instead of her grow bag
  • that stopping to actually TALK to Mr Skins can bring a whole new perspective on it all
Nothing earth-shattering. But all pretty special to me in their own way. Today's gem of advice - don't overlook it. Just smile and enjoy.

Love, etc

Monday, October 27, 2008

The Way I Was Made

Hitch. SUCH a good movie. I absolutely love it, but there's something about watching a movie in church that makes you see it in a totally different way. Normally, I'm full on soppy "AWWWW" when Alexa is telling Hitch that she loves all Albert's quirky habits, because they make her feel more normal, but last night, all I could think about was why we feel the need to pretend to be something we're not or to impress others. At the end of the day, even he learns that there aren't any basic principles to successful dating (though that said, some things just really aren't cool for ANY girl in ANY situation...) And he's right...there are no basic principles to attraction, other than being yourself (Funny how often cliches are actually true...)

Easier said than done huh?? Easy to prattle on about loving yourself and highlighting your best qualities to others, but what about those days when you look at yourself and can't see them?? Or the times you look at yourself and just can't stand what you see?? What then?? Sadly, there isn't any quick fix. There are plenty of real life Hitch's waiting for you to call them so they can train you to be successful, but how much of "you" would be left if that happened? And what can help on the days when you're not feeling it?? Doesn't work for everyone, but for me, Mr Tomlin once again provides the answer...

I want to live like there's no tomorrow
I want to dance like no one's around
I want to sing like nobody's listening
Before I lay my body down
I want to give like I have plenty
I want to love like I'm not afraid
I want to be the man I was meant to be
I want to be the way I was made

Believing that I exist in God's image is a constant struggle...believing that he wants me exactly the way I am is hard - there are far too many other people for me to compare every aspect of myself to and come up short, but what Hitch said was right - there are no basic principles. The honest answer is to work with what you've might not like your smile, but you'll never know how much difference it can make to someone's day. And wanting to be happy with the way you are has got to be a step in the right direction. After all, if Albert can pull Alexa, there's hope for all of us, right??

Love, etc.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Falling. Or Just Landing On Your Feet?

Have had the idea for this post floating around my head for a while but hadn't found my hook, despite having the most beautiful quote from one of my favourite books. The Art of Falling is your typical story of self-discovery, happening to fall in love with typically stunning (often Italian) man along the way, but instead of the usual "lalala wouldn't it be nice if a stunning (Italian) man fell in my lap" thoughts**, this time the thing I took away from it was the idea that

"what some of us are most afraid of is letting ourselves be seen in our true colors,"

which is totally and utterly true. How often do we honestly answer the question "how are you?" How often do we let people in to look after us?? How often do we really admit the truth of our feelings?? And what is it stopping us?? Pride?? A wish to not impose our problems on other people?? Worries about rejection and judgement?? Or just fear that once someone has broken through the facade, we won't be able to hide anymore?? The thing that gets me is where do we get that fear from?? I'm slowly discovering that when people care about you, "I'm fine" is hurtful to them...they want to love you and care for you, and you're pushing them away with platitudes. Surely with the people who love you, you don't NEED to hide?? The facade doesn't need to exist, let alone be broken through.

Its scary, *really* scary letting someone through the facade...being used to coping alone (or perhaps, "coping" alone) can become habit forming; the smile can become too permanent; you can begin to believe that everything really is ok. But sooner or later, it breaks, so you might as well be honest now to make sure there's someone to catch you when you finally learn how to fall.

Love, etc.

**Don't get me would be totally fine if a stunning man fell in my lap. Italian or otherwise...

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Hope. And an Arrivals lounge.

What does hope mean to you?? Does it mean something that you'd quite like to happen but don't really believe that it will?? Something you have more faith in, but are still not quite sure about, but can't let go of?? Or is it your eager anticipation of a future happening? Your anticipation of a future certainty - something you *know* is going to happen and can trust in?

The concept of "hope" is so comforting, but how often do we let ourselves hope in things that are just vague and woolley?? Things that we can't let go of, but cling on to, just incase. Why do we find it so easy to cling on to these things, but manage to forget that

"For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God. When Christ, who is your life, appears, then you also will appear with him in glory"

And the arrivals lounge?? Just think for a second about arrivals at Heathrow (Love Actually stylee) Think of all the people standing there waiting for their loved one to arrive...each time the doors open, the anticipation, and someone's joy at seeing the person coming through. I've heard plenty in my time about being a Princess and a daughter of the King of Kings (all very valid, I hasten to add) but nothing has ever touched me as much as the concept of Heaven as an Arrivals hall, and that joy being for us, each one of us, when we get home.

When we have that hope, why do we doubt?? Why do we let the earthly crap get in the way of us fixing our eyes on that welcome and living our lives for that point??

So yeah. Hope. And an Arrivals lounge. Its been a deep day.

Love, etc

**N.B. In an unusual departure from the norm, I want to dedicate this post to the preacher from whom I shamelessly have pilfered these ideas. And his lovely wife with whom he makes such a terrifyingly strong team for the Kingdom**

Friday, October 10, 2008

Pride and prejudices

One of the saddest things I've ever experienced in a church was watching my old church split itself very unhappily in two over an issue so inconsequential in the grand scheme of things that it was just heartbreaking to watch. Lifelong relationships were broken and I'm sure people were lost as a result of it and all for what?? For the church to then split again just a few years later, leaving three fractured groups where there used to be one huge vibrant congregation.

Arriving from the midst of that to St Johns to discover that there were already two congregations and plans for a third was confusing, to say the least, but after going to each of the services & becoming more involved in the church, I realised that whilst there were different groups of people who met at different times on a Sunday, "St Johns" was one very solid church that simply catered for a variety of tastes and styles. I've heard the Anglican church criticised as being all things to all people (often from the pulpit of my old church) but compared to Trinity, St Johns is doing a whole lot better at modeling the biblical principle of church. In ALL ways.

One the best things I've discovered about being part of a large, vibrant, varied congregation is how you can constantly be learning from people - their views on something, their interpretation of a certain passage or situation because of their experiences, their life experiences - if we all kept to ourselves in our happy little worship bubbles, there's a very real possibility that we would become insular, too set in our ways, too rigid, and unwelcoming to change. By keeping in touch with the other congregations, we can learn from each other...we're not fighting to keep everyone happy with one service and everyone can peacefully co-exist as individuals making up a big unit.

Now, don't get me wrong...I know the 9.15 congregation really don't like our tech kit being all over the dais, and I'll be the first to admit that the choir drive me insane when they move said kit and complain about it right when I'm trying to work. The 11am mix is too loud for some; the choir are too traditional for others, but when it comes down to it, I guess I'm proud of my church for truly embodying the concept that

The way God designed our bodies is a model for understanding our lives together
as a church: every part dependent on every other part,
the parts we mention and the parts we don't, the parts we see and the parts we don't.
If one part hurts, every other part is involved in the hurt, and in the healing.
If one part flourishes, every other part enters into the exuberance (1 Corinthians 25-26)

Love, etc.

p.s. Yes, I worry about how Anglican I appear to have become too...I claim redemption through my use of The Message...

Monday, October 06, 2008

Sharing the love...

So I got tagged. And I'm still unemployed and have nothing better to do with my time...

A. Attached or Single? Single. But I'm working on it.

B. Best Friend? There are a special few (who really should know who they are) that keep me sane.

C. Cake or pie? Ooooh, quite tough actually...I would say pie (either Mumma's chicken or Banoffee of dreams) but then there's all stuff like Brownies. And Brownies. And Brownies. And Liz's chocolate cake. Both then, is what I'm really trying to say!

D. Day of choice? Hectic as they are, Sundays. But any day I get hugs is a good day.

E. Essential item? My phone. I'm not sure I function correctly without it. And that's not something I'm willing to test!!

F. Favorite color? Purple. Mostly. Also black for its slimming properties when it comes to clothing.

G. Gummy bears or worms? Either or.

H. Hometown? Petersfield

I. Favorite indulgence? Very close tie between wedges, cheese and beans and Jacks fish and chips (I can't say wine because that makes me sound like an alky...)

J. January or July? Ummmm. January I guess. I love winter. But only if its sunny...not a fan of the whole rain thing (hence not chosing July...)

K. Kids? Not yet.

L. Life isn’t complete without? Music, a Sound Desk, hugs and my Bible.

M. Marriage date? I have no idea, but during the summer sometime.

N. Number of brothers and sisters? for my sins, a big ugly brother.

O. Oranges or Apples? Apples. Oranges just ming.

P. Phobias? Spiders and frogs (fairly standard) death and being alone (kinda wierd)

Q. Quotes? This could take some time...

"My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness" 2 Corinthians 12v9

"Those who stand for nothing fall for anything" Alexander Hamilton

Josh Lyman: All I'm saying is, if you were in an accident, I wouldn't stop to get a beer.
Donna Moss: If you were in an accident, I wouldn't stop for red lights.

"Sometimes I lay awake at night and ask myself "Where did I go wrong?" Then a voice says to me "This is going to take more than one night." Charlie Brown

"I have spread my dreams under your feet...tread softly, because you tread on my dreams" Yeats

R. Reasons to smile? My friends & the kids. Hugs. And a certain person's grin.

S. Season of choice? I guess sort of October-y time (with no rain) There are leaves to be kicked through and jumpers to be snuggled in to.

T. Tag 5 people: Blue Eyes, Ariel, Bella Farfella, Bean and Girl Guess we'll see how often they read my bloglet...

U. Unknown fact about me? There are plenty which are unknown. And that way they shall stay. Guess I could share my inside leg measurement (33") or the fact that I still sleep with a teddy-bear every night I'm at home.

V. Vegetable? Contrary to popular belief, I do eat vegtables. Now and again.

W. Worst habit? I flip out over the smallest things in an entirely unnecessary way. But I'm lovely. Really.

X. X-ray or Ultrasound? Well, neither by choice, but having never had an Ultrasound, I guess X-Ray. They don't hurt at least.

Y. Your favorite food? Roast. Or Chinese food. Or Fish & Chips. Or Mumma's Chicken pie. There is no way I could ever pick just one.

Z. Zodiac sign? Pisces but I don't actually believe in them.

And that, my friends, has filled 20 valuable job-hunting minutes. What joy!

Love, etc.