Wednesday Wonders: Safe Space?

I’m at a point in my life at the moment where I feel like I’m in a space, surrounded by blank areas; not knowing where I’m supposed to be going; not even sure if there is a final destination. It’s beautiful but it’s confusing.

I guess it’s been worn out by what my life has been so far; so there is some similarity surrounding me in my blank space but in terms of where it is aiming I DON’T KNOW.

We often seem to focus on where we are heading as opposed to what has got us to that space in time in the first place. The picture above shows a shore line which is also a large space that has been worn away over the years. It is a result of water, people, wind, all sorts and it will be continuing on that journey.

I’m not sure what the next stop is for me. I could stay where I am and take a deep look around, learn more about what has happened and made the space I’m in now. I could make a pathway to move forward but that would also involve thinking about where that path will head.

I think at the moment I’m going to continue taking each day as it comes as that is where I feel safest at the moment.

Journey Journal: Entry 4

It’s Epiphany and it’s the final part of the journey. The Magi have followed the star and made it to the manger.

How do you feel when you reach your chosen destination? This would have been a long journey that they weren’t entirely sure about; ending with meeting a baby – a baby!

I imagine there was a sense of relief after the journey; but also some sense of confusion. They felt they were being led to a King and they arrive at a sleeping baby.

What things lead you to a sense of confusion? What do you do when you’re confused? I hope you are able to reach an epiphany!

Wednesday Wonders: New Beginning

As we begin the new year of 2022 are there new things we are considering? Healthy lifestyle; change of diet; routine; new things to read… just as a few suggestions. I was watching something the other day which made the suggestion that New Years Resolutions should be positive rather than negative. For example choosing to eat healthily or do exercise rather than losing a certain amount of weight.

In 2022 I haven’t specifically set any resolutions and I think this is because I’m still in a place of uncertainty and confusion, which means I’m not sure of where I’m heading or what the route will be. I find it difficult to plan what the new beginning can be when I’m so unsure of the current situation.

I think it’s important for us to take new beginnings and for us to really think about what we will do with those. Are there things that we need to leave behind; things that we need to forget; things that have come to an end and need to start again.

As we start 2022 what are you leaving and what are you starting?

Journey Journal: Entry 3

The journey continues for the Magi and it continues alongside our life story. Here they are alongside a wedding photo with the husbands grandparents but they are also on a drum that I got on a visit to Ivory Coast.

The drum came first and is acting as a base in this picture. What is the purpose of drums? They give us rhythm; a beat to walk to. Regular readers will know that I like listening to music but you may not appreciate how I like a beat. As I picture the Magi walking along following the star I picture them on camels and those camels travelling along to a beat in the desert.

What would you say makes the beat for you as you walk along? How can you encourage the rhythm?

The Magi are passing in front of one of our wedding photos where we are with the grandparents. I love this photo as, not only is it a wedding photo, but it’s with three people who had a huge impact on the husbands life growing up and who also welcomed me into the family when we got together.

It’s important to have other people who support you; guide you; lead you on your journeys through life. Who plays that part for you; how do you play that part for others?

Journey Journal: Entry 2

The Magi have been continuing with their journey and are currently resting on a music system with a ‘thinker’. I don’t know about you but when I’m walking or working or sleeping I like to have music on. I find music to be an important part of my life. I enjoy playing it as well as listening to it. I find the words beneficial and the rhythm/tunes helpful as an aid when I’m focussing on other things.

There has probably been music of some description in the world since there have been humans. It brings people together; and for all we know was something that the magi used to keep them entertained on their long journey. Many people also find music an essential part of their worship – I know I feel the importance of it both in playing and singing and, in fact, listening!

In the picture above we can see the Magi resting with a thinking man. As we go on our own journeys it is important that we seek guidance and support from others. We may not always know them but we need to try not to stand back.

As we continue alongside the journey of the Magi… who and what will you seek support from?

Wednesday Wonders: Family

As I write this mum and Merlin are heading back after a post-Christmas visit. They came down on Boxing Day. The husband was working on Christmas Day so I didn’t spend the day with family but was blessed to be able to spend the day with friends.

BUT what do we consider to be family?

Is it just relatives? I would hasten to argue No!

I may not have been with anyone I am related to for Christmas dinner but I was in a place a felt welcome with people I know and love. Is that not family?

Of course my relatives are family, and I’m missing my mum already. However, there are other people who I would consider to be family as well. Those who I feel I can share my concerns with; those who look out for me and who I try to look out for.

For me we all belong to a family; but family is also about a sense of belonging. Sometimes that requires us to spot people who don’t feel they belong and help them feel like they do. This might be through a kind word, a note on social media or through the door, an invitation.

God bless you all at this time

Journey Journal: Entry 1

Here they are… the journey is beginning… time to start following the star and see where it guides us. Over the next couple of weeks we will be following the journey of the Magi as they make their way to the nativity scene. This will be linked both with the furniture at home and the Gospel story.

So here they are at the beginning of quite a long journey not really knowing what to expect ahead of them. They have each other to support and for support and they have gifts for the King they are visiting.

How are you feeling as you approach the New Year? Excited? Apprehensive? Prepared? The Magi were probably feeling all of these things but they also knew the journey was important and necessary so they started on their way…

Wednesday Wonders: Expectations

As we go back to the first ever Christmas, when Jesus was born, expectation was a part of it. At Christmas today we may have an expectation of what is facing us as we open our presents; what should be there at the Christmas dinner table; what should be a part of the ‘Christmas special on TV’.

Back in the day; there was an expectation of a saviour being sent to earth by God.

The problem with expectations is that we can so easily be disappointed, or let down if our expectations are not met. The Jewish people were expecting a King and instead they got a baby in a manger. I’m sure there will be many people who politely say thank you for the gift they open on Christmas.

Maybe we shouldn’t expect anything and then we will be grateful for anything we do receive, or do, or see. Similarly as we approach 2022 don’t necessarily have expectations for the year ahead but be grateful for the experiences you have.

Have blessed Christmas one and all.

Wednesday Wonders: Purpose

Why do we do things? Does there need to be a reason? Does there need to be a purpose?

I’m not sure there always does but when there is it can make a difference.

Two Sundays ago I was playing keyboard and singing at Church; once I had led the songs I went back to the husband and I was physically shaking – that is no exaggeration. I had felt the shaking during the playing and had also heard it in my voice.

After the service I spoke to a friend who is a member of our congregation and who sings professionally to see if he could give me some advice. Originally he said ‘just tell people you’re singing vibrato! But then he reminded me of something very important… in that setting I’m not performing for an audience but am worshipping.

That idea had been challenging me all week and this week I had a completely different mindset; this meant I was playing differently and worshipping not worrying or performing.

I don’t think that we have an overall purpose for our lives. That wouldn’t make a huge amount of sense with the amount of change that occurs. However, if we think about the purpose of the small things in our day to day lives then the way we approach them might change as will the result.

Wednesday Wonders: Water

I’ve never really been much use at gardening, growing things or keeping plants alive. My mum is great at this, and recently I was having a meal with her and some of her friends where she was explaining about the different needs of the plants in terms of water. Water is an amazing thing, it brings life, it helps things grow, it helps keep things clean, it can offer direction when people are walking, it can be so much fun when swimming or sailing etc. If it wasn’t for water we wouldn’t get rainbows.

However…

There aren’t many people who enjoy rain, if you don’t know how to swim then large areas of water can be incredibly dangerous, water has been known to cause awful damage to people’s homes and businesses, and the mixture of rain and wind can be awful to walk in but I also believe it is not great to drive in either.

After listening to what my mum was saying a couple of weeks ago, I have seen a few programmes which have featured rivers, lakes, waterfalls – water in all sorts actually – and this got me wondering.

There is no doubt that water is essential in our lives and it is so powerful. Water also is likely to play more of a part in our lives than we realise. We will often look at sources of water to see what the weather is up to, whether that be puddles, garden ponds, rivers, the sea. Is it calm or is it splashing all over the place? Water may also define our activities for the day, going out, staying home, going for a walk or going to the library.

Water is a central part to the existence and development of the world and humanity. We possibly don’t give it it’s due… until we’re thirsty and need a drink.

Are there other things in your life that play an essential part but are almost invisible? Do you need to show more recognition to them or for them? How can you do that?

Just wondering!