LOOKING THROUGH A KALEIDOSCOPE

 

kaleidescope image

Do you remember, as a child, ever having
looked through the lens of a kaleidoscope,
and being amazed at the pretty colours and
patterns that you saw in it?
I do,  and I remember with fascination
the patterns that did not collapse on itself.
Only when tilted or shaken did new patterns form.
To me it was magic, and I tucked it away
somewhere in my memory.

Years later, I became interested in the subject of wholeness and read many books on mental and emotional healing, physical health and spiritual well-being.  Creativity is a stepping stone toward wholeness, and I found that writing was an expression of my kind of creativity.    I attended a writing course – and the mentor made us write something everyday.

So a collection of writings came into being, that I have recently re-discovered, re-read, and before re-discarding them ! – for I am an hoarder at heart – would like to share, from time to time, with you.

I have said all that to say this.   Here is my writing on wholeness.   I hope it makes sense, but understand it as though looking through a kaleidoscope !

FRAGMENTS OF WHOLENESS

Our lives are made up of many parts,
a kaleidoscope of parts, and patterns and colours.   |
Colours that catch the light,
when turned in the prism of life.
Often the pieces will fall separately together
and lie randomly in part,
forming a picture in itself.
Other times we measure them to fit in the right places
connecting them purposefully
for reasons of our own.
Taken as a whole,
we see that we are made up of different parts
When life tilts at our securities
we tend to change the patterns
When we look carefully
we will discover the patterns we become
when weaved unintentionally.
Best of all is to know
that we are what we are
from the different parts we play,
to understand and to accept
the fragments of the whole.

range if diamonds

 

 

 

HOPE… catch it if you can.

peach flower

HOPE
I heard the Voice in my head say, ” why don’t you write an essay on Hope.”
What a topic !   Because hope can be so elusive, not easy to pin down, let alone examine.
What is hope ?  I scratched my head, and thought it a topic for another day.  So I put it on the back burner of procrastination.

But it wouldn’t go away. Hope came looking for attention on nearly everything I read, heard, even the people I met along the way that week seemed to shout out “I’m  Hope” look at me !   Well it seemed that Hope needed some serious attention.

I think, initially, it was while I was reading the verses in Romans that raised the whole question of hope.  Verses like:  if you can see hope its not longer hope –  but hope that is seen is not hope – Romans 8:24.
And hope, even if there is no hope –  who contrary to hope in hope believed. – Romans 4: 18
So I went on a hope hunt, and found :
We are prisoners of Hope… Zechariah 9:12
Hope is the anchor of our souls.…Hebrews 6:19
Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but when desire comes it is a tree of life.  Proverbs 13:12
All very comforting, rewarding and necessary to know.

Is Hope and Faith the same thing ?
We hope in something we cannot see, but is that not faith ?  Is Faith then something else ?  Now faith is the substance of things  hoped  for, the evidence of things not seen !!    A little more head scratching !!    Faith says that we call things into being as if they exist,  – but if we can’t see them, how can we call them?    What comes first, Hope or Faith – the egg or the chicken so to speak ! This is  where Desire comes in, those little seeds of wishes and wants and dreams. So is it Desire, Hope then Faith ?  Is Hope a carrier of Faith?  Well, if Hope comes from Desire, that is God-given and put into our hearts (the incubator), in the first place, then Faith must be to Believe, – the belief of the promise, the patience and the determination to see it through into existance, – into Reality.

That is for vision building, but of course, Hope can go the other way too. It can be the very crutch we lean upon when things go wrong.  On considering Hope, I came across a few Blogs that week on Hope, by accident of course!   I came a little closer to looking at, and being astonished at,  Hope.

https://unshakeablehope.wordpress.com
A man named Bill who has for the best part of eighteen years suffered with classic motor neuron disease, which is a disease that attacks the nerve cells responsible for contolling voluntary muscles.  His blog is called unshakable hope !!  Need I say more.  Visit the blog and let Bill tell you his story.

Another self-improvement blog on WordPress called Dopeylife wrote a thought provoking post on Desire vs Need,  which challenged me to think deeply on Desire equals Hope, and I made a long comment on that blog, trying to figure it all out.

That very same week I, co-incidently, met Tiffy at the grocery shop. She is a lady who lives in our complex.  She was preparing to go and see the cancer specialist, who had successfully treated her for her first bout with cancer. She looked and sounded very optimistic even cheerful, and said she just hoped and prayed that God would grant her
the peace, and the joy to carry her through the next bout of treatment for this new cancer.
Hope is an eternal carrier for Life.

We cannot live without it for  Hope gives us a Future  !!

While watching a movie on Stephen Hawkins, a professor in quantum physics, who has a muscular disabling disease and lives his life crumpled-up in a wheelchair, I caught this phrase he spoke to an audience :
“Where there is life, there is Hope.”  One can only stand to humble attention, when these words are spoken by a person so crippled, yet not broken,  and living with hope.

It slowly dawned on me that Hope is only truly appreciated if you have your back against a wall and there is no way of getting out of the situation.  No way, No help. The only way is looking up to God who can make a way out, (whether we acknowledge this or not !) or carry us over or through the troubling waters of trials and tibulations. And more – give us the grace to bear it all.  Further more to that, we may never see the desired results we hoped for in the first place!  – but some may come to see something even better and far more far-reaching.  We seldom, maybe even never, get to see the end from the beginning.

I had heard the Preacher say, that Hope is one of the cores of the Christian faith.  That is true !    I remembered one of my favourite Scripture verses is found in Proverb 13:12 …
Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but when Desire comes it is a tree of life... and a beautiful picture of a blossom tree in full bloom came to my mind.

So,  now I’ll talk  “pictures” to tell a little story of Hope .

why me tree

The Why Me tree, with outstretched arms to heaven, in a cold and barren land.

Pruned treesThe painful wounds of pruning, sealed up with a healing balm for protection and healing.

peach blossom branch
Beautiful  full budded blossoms, bursting into bloom, making a splendid show, announcing  the cold barren winter is over.

imagespeach blossom

                                                                            Proverbs  13:12
  Hope deferred makes the heart sick, but when desire comes it is a tree of life.  

peach blossom

Ah,  there it is,  the new fruit, for a new season!  Is this the reason  for Hope ?

peach fruit.jpg

The Fruit.  Delicious, delightful, delectable and plump, ready-to-eat peaches,  basking in a sunshine day, just waiting  to be picked  for our pleasure.

blossom twig

Hang in there, little Twig.  You’re part of a beautiful tree, in a very big orchard, created by a loving, caring and wise Gardener, who knows your seasons well, and what’s best for the fruit bearing trees of His orchard.   You are not alone.   Bloom where you are planted.

Peach blossom orchard
We have been intrinsictly wired for Hope.
Hope comes through spoken words,  that blow on the gentle thermaIs of the Wind, or even through written words that can give birth to pictures, to concepts and plans, to life, and the eternal life hereafter.

Hope is elusive, catch it if you can… it will carry you through whatever season of hope or despair you are in, carry you on to faith, and a desired end.

God says :
For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil to give you  a future and a  hope.       Jeremiah 29:11

light peach blooms

MAKE THIS A LEAP YEAR

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Leap years are needed to keep our modern day calendar in alignment with the earth’s revolutions around the sun.
It takes the earth approximately 365 days, 5 hours, 48 minutes and 45 seconds to circle once around the sun.  This is called a Tropical year.  The Common year is 365 days long. The Leap year is 366 days long.   The extra day is added at the end of February, the shortest month, giving it 29 instead of the usual 28 days.
A Leap year is a year in which an extra day is added to the calendar in order to synchronize it with the seasons.
Acknowledging : Scienceworld.wolfram.com  and  Time and date.com.   

The month of February is often associated with love, because of Valentine’s day.  But it is quite phenominal as it hosts the Leap year – a place to put the left over hours, minutes and seconds, not to be wasted, but that go to make up a whole new day – an extra 24 hours.

However what leaped  (!!) into my mind was the word  leap.
According to Google  Leap means : Jump or spring a long way to a great height, or with great force.
According to Cambridge Dictionaries Online  Leap means :  to make a large jump or sudden movement, usuall from one place to another.

What conjurred up in my mind was how the Sprinbuck gracefully leaps seemingly with gleeful joy, in wide open spaces.   Or the proverbial sheep you count when you can’t sleep, leaping over the farm fence !!  Or the slimey frog, as it purposely leaps from one stone to another on the lilly pond of life, looking for food.   And my lazy cat as she leaps with furry frenzy into the air when I playfully scare her.    Nature is full of leaping creatures, depicting all shades of intentions and emotions.

My translation of leap is  : the necessity to purposely, transfer from one place to another.
 Leap to overcome !    Now there’s a thought – leap to overcome.  There are many concepts on overcome.  It is an imperative in the walk of life to overcome.   The consequence of not overcoming is that you stay where you are, you can become stuck, stagnant, stale … and boring !!
An overcoming mind  is essential, and that is why there are many promises in God’s word that reward the Overcomer.   It is indeed something to set our sights on.  It elevates the horizen, the future, something to aspire to, it is  the flexing of  a spiritual muscle to …  rise up !

Leaping and Overcoming, from a Bible perspective, brings an insightful and significant meaning that widens and deepens the essentiality of making a paradigm shift, or simply put, changing your mind – about yourself, your circumstance, your life. Think differently !

Read :
Psalm 18:29     For by You I can run against a troop.  By my God I can   leap   over a wall.
Revelation 21:7  He who  overcomes  shall inherit all things, and I will be his God and he shall be My son.
This year take a leap of faith, make Jesus Christ the Saviour and Lord of your life, it is the first step in becoming  a true  Overcomer.

There is something about leaping and overcoming that speaks of courage and of faith.  It pertains to the emotions of life, hardships in life and sadnesses about life, but also to the normal every day nitty gritty choices.  Leaping is done by making decisions.   Make up your mind, and just do it – that is leaping !  It may open up a new course of circumstances and definitely new horizens.

The calendar tells us that 2016  is a Leap Year.   Make this your Leap Year to whatever you aspire to do,  to be,  to become, or where to go.
Remember your life is a product of your decisions – so decide, take the leap in
faith and …..

Leap from fear to faith
Leap from negative to  positive
Leap from discontent to contentment
Leap from depression to happiness
Leap from co-dependence to independence
Leap from self depreciation to self worth
Leap from unforgiveness to forgiveness
Leap from sickness to health
Leap from greed to generosity
Leap from lack to abundance
Leap from poverty to progress

…. and in all your leaping,  Leap for Joy !
That is what overcoming is all about !

 

 

 

 

Welcome to Time

 


images (6)

 

The welcoming mat is out for a new year.

Its  TIME  that has been given to us, and for some a nudge of encouragement might be needed to shine in on 2016.

Some people collect rings and things.  I like to collect strings of words, pearls of wisdom, if you like.   Not really a philosopher at heart, I tend to pick and gather the words and thoughts of other people who can more aptly express the heart of a matter with just the right line of thought or words for the occassion.

So here are some of my “pearls”  for you,  for the year ahead.

HEADS  UP  !
SMILES  WIDE  !

MINDS  OPEN  !

That is from Teacher Charne, who teaches pre primary kiddies.  Does it not create such a sense of happy expectancy ?  A call to attention.

I am reminded of a phrase that Dr Caroline Leaf said on a TV proramme that went something like this. ” when you pay attention, focus in on the matter at hand, when you expect things, your neurons in your brain go  Yay !  something is coming, and they get ready to receive new input. Amazing  !   So let us focus, and pay happy attention to what is important to us this year.

For the Dreamers out there, here are the words of a song that Teacher Charne, had to teach her little class for a year-end concert in 2011.  Being a Dreamer myself I just love this !

Anything can happen if you let it,
sometimes things are difficult
but you can bet it
doesn’t have to be so
changes can be made
you can move a mountain if you use a larger spade.

Anything can happen, its a marvel
you can be a butterfly or just stay larval,
stretch your mind beyond fantastic,
dreams are made from strong elastic
take some good advice and don’t forget it,
anything can happen if you let it !!

Out of the mouth of babes, yes ?  This is a faith song we should all sing.

Then recently from the WordPress Blogosphere I gleaned these words, that encouraged me,  to encourage you. From the blog of    lilyellyn.com
         Who I am today is shaped by what I did yesterday and last year and the years   before that.   But who I will be tomorrow depends on what I choose to do with today.   

Surra commented on the WordPress blog with these words that grabbed me :
” 2016 is the year… the year to stop living in the past… its the year to do everything you can today to create a better tomorrow... the year to act, and I am looking forward to it”
I looked up Surrah at  :   brighteyesandpinkskies.com/about/   to find more inspiration, and was humbled to discover that she has SMA – spinal muscular atrophy !!  What courage she has to be able to write these words.

Finally,  advice from the Scriptures, to walk in wisdom,  found in Ephesians 5:15,16
See then that you walk circumspectly, not as fools but as wise,  redeeming the time
because the days are evil.
 
Time is a gift, time is for living our life to the best of our ability, and potential, to the fullest of our joy,  and to the glory of God.   Make Time count !
May we all have the sense, and the grace,  to make the most of the time that has been freely given to us.

To all, blessings and happiness for  2016.

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Heads up !   Smiles wide !     Minds open !     

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

UNDER THE PEPPER TREE

 

download (4).jpg Pepper Tree

 

Just imagine life without a family ?  It must be the poorest thing on earth not to know the love, the joy, the heartaches, the high and low dramas of family life. We are so the richer for it.

Normal family life is the glue that keeps us together, keeps us sane, and on track… and keeps society in check !   God in His wisdom designed the family as an institution for provision, protection, productivity, procreation, and the foundational pillar on which society builds a better world, for the children and following generations to come. The complexity and dynamics of building a normal functioning family is a monumental task, and requires the grace of God to accomplish.   How sad that this institution is beginning to crumble and fade because of  “The  Selfies” – the obesession of  Self –  self importance, self gratification, self satisfaction, obsession with money, and thoughtless morals.  But I do realise that this is the way of the new millenium generation.  Normal family life, as imperfect as it can be, does knock  “the selfie” out of us, to make room for something a little larger than ourselves where we learn to share and care and  create a larger space for others to have their being too.

As I sat on the bench under the Pepper tree, reflecting on the family – and other things, I was happy, and resting before the marriage of my daughter to her friend and long time fiance.   The wedding, was to take place at a wedding venue on a small game reserve just outside the city of Pretoria.   It was all very very beautiful, with a deck overlooking the dam, with geese, and fringed with buck and other wild life gathering to eat out their troughs as the sun was setting.  A wedding flowered arch was set on the deck where the ceremony was to be performed, with peace and tranquility speaking the loudest on that blissful afternoon.
What a beautiful wedding, an occasion where two people became one, where two families briefly connected with joy to witness their union.
What is more special than a family wedding ?

It had been a hurry scurry of events that led up to the wedding, so I was happy to be quietly sitting under the Pepper tree.   Pretoria is a lovely city, not flat, but surrounded by distant hills.  The Guest house was on a gentle slope, and as I lifted up my eyes to look over the wall I could see the Cross of a nearby Church rise high into the sky, and I knew I had to be very quiet.  Then came the intensity of the passion, that seems so prevalent on the high ground.  And a prayer began to go out for South Africa, for Pretoria, for leaders of integrity and honour to be raised up, for good governance for our land…. and for rain, plenty of showers of blessings for families,  for the city,  and for our land.

Under the Pepper tree  was a special moment in time for me.   I’m sure God was listening too and heard my prayers, quietly spoken on that day under the Pepper tree.

Pepper Tree