This is the Sixpence None the Richer song that began my fascination with the band – rather a long time ago now. It is one of those ‘instrumental through my teenage years’ things (the band) and yet it still carries weight today rather than being an embarassment (except perhaps ‘Dancing Queen’ cover which I’ve always detested). The first time I heard this song I did not like it at all and thought it was a bit wishy, but well written words have a power that pull you back in and deeper towards greater meaning even in their simplicity.

My heart is as dark as the soil, sodden with winter rains
My soul is as heavy as the peat, freshly dug from the bog
My thoughts swirl like willow branches caught in autumn winds
My body is as tense as a cat’s as it stalks its prey

Help me open my heart to You
Help me open my heart to You
Help me open my heart to You, oh Jesus
It’s what I long to do

My heart is as dark as the soil, sodden with winter rains
(Lord, brighten my heart)
My soul is as heavy as the peat, freshly dug from the bog
(Lord, lighten my soul)

My thoughts swirl like willow branches caught in autumn winds
(Lord, still my thoughts)
My body is as tense as a cat’s as it stalks its prey
(Lord relax my body)

Help me open my heart to You
(Help me open my heart to You)
Help me open my heart to You
(Help me open my heart to You)
Help me open my heart to You, oh Jesus
It’s what I long to do

Help me open my heart to You
(Help me open my heart to You)
Help me open my heart to You
(Help me open my heart to You)
Help me open my heart to You, sweet Jesus,

(Help me open my heart to You)
I want to open my heart to You
(Help me open my heart to You)
I want to open my heart to You
(Help me open my heart to You)
I want to open my heart to You, oh Jesus
It’s what I long to do

 

Christianity Life Music

It has been a very frustrating few weeks. At the start of the week (a few weeks back) we made the decision to move back ‘east’ closer to family and friends at the end of the year. This decision was two years in the making (I kid you not) with many competing factors both sides. It means starting again. It’s a big call, it was a big call to move out this way in the first place and we might’ve said we weren’t every going to move back that way. It’s leaving stuff we like and love a lot. It is hard.

During the week we had a random opportunity to look at a house to see if we wanted to take over a lease – 6 months ahead of schedule with 48hrs to make the decision. Not in the plan. I was going to look by myself and then someone ran into my car so Geoff wound up coming with me. We like it a lot. We applied. If Geoff hadn’t been there we probably wouldn’t have made the call.

And then things stopped. It’s been over a week. The agent cannot reach the landlord and as the clock ticks so does the overlap of rent with a fixed move date and the inability to give notice on where we are currently until we know for sure.

It’s driving me crazy.

And yet God is throwing random bits of work my way that seem to match the cost time that overlaps. He’s got that bit. I hope. God is also talking to me about house and home and what I want that or what that could look like. It’s infancy stuff. Nothing concrete more a, ‘Hey, get this on your radar you!’. Pinterest is house deep and thats super fun (seriously I’m a tad obsessed) but what other elements make up home? What do you want home to look like? What can you do with a new opportunity?

Here is an opportunity to start again. Yet again. Go again you say. Go again. It’s terribly Dr. Suess. New place, new church, maybe a new job? Back again to where we started in the first place but in a new way.

And I read the story of John’s birth. New things. Not following old paths or traditions or names.

Luke 1:59-66

On the eighth day they came to circumcise the child, and they were going to name him Zechariah after his father. But his mother said, ‘No; he is to be called John.’ They said to her, ‘None of your relatives has this name.’ Then they began motioning to his father to find out what name he wanted to give him. He asked for a writing-tablet and wrote, ‘His name is John.’ And all of them were amazed. Immediately his mouth was opened and his tongue freed, and he began to speak, praising God. Fear came over all their neighbours, and all these things were talked about throughout the entire hill country of Judea. All who heard them pondered them and said, ‘What then will this child become?’ For, indeed, the hand of the Lord was with him.

Is God in this? Yes. Will we even get approved for the house? I don’t know. Maybe, maybe not. I hope so. I like it. I hope too this is an opportunity of beginning. As we roll in through the next few months with a new baby (oh yeh there’s that too – besides possibly moving in two weeks, throwing a 2 year old birthday party, shooting one more wedding whilst being 34 weeks pregnant… ah crap), a new life  -I would like things to pan out in a more deliberate sense where we stop and ask God, what is home? What do you want that to look like? Blow our conceptions.

Because he sure as hell is working in a different way this time.

Christianity Life

“and one hundred and sixty one days later, inexplicably, in the middle of the peeling of the vegetables, it passed” – Steph Judd

Today I am encouraged by this.
I am reminded of life progressing around the everyday. Of God using little things and time and little things again. Of weariness ceasing, of joy in unexpected moments. Of faithfulness and fruition and of peace in the mundane.

Little stories that are parts of bigger ones that allow a glimpse into hopeful new worlds.

Hooray for people who write. This makes me want to be one of you again.

General

I was sick yesterday. Made Geoff come home from work. I don’t do that often. But hey, I’m 6 months pregnant and have wedding to shoot on Saturday. No playing games.

Claire is nearly 2. She talks. She talks and talks. Some more = more some. It’s pretty excellent. Our days currently look a little like: Geoff getting up in the morning when Claire does and they play and make us all coffee/baby chinos. She loves it. I love it. I think Geoff loves it. When he leaves she pesters me enough for ‘bubbles’ (cereal) or porridge to get me out of bed. We eat breakfast and I attempt to deal with the kitchen while she does. She likes to steal my toast. Then we play/read/clean etc. The independant play thing is slowly happening. She likes me involved and I try to give her good attention in the mornings because a) I should b) she sleeps better c) she’s generally a quality time girl so it’s super important. Around 10am’ish we have a drink of milk (she does) and read a story and she goes down for a nap. 1-2hrs. I work mostly when she naps, sometimes I relax. I always make a cup of tea, sometimes I remember to drink it.

She wakes up happy. We potter around and eat lunch. The afternoons are fair game – sometimes we stay home sometimes we go out. Naps are also fair game and rarely happen and if she has one she usually wakes up grumpy. By 3.30-4pm I’m done, done, done and I hang out for 4.30pm Playschool time. I love Playschool. Playschool = sanity. She gets to watch that (if anything), Giggle and Hoot and Peppa Pig and if we pushing everything some Bananas In Pyjamas – which usually holds her attention for about five minutes. Geoff comes home. We deal with dinner. We eat early. Claire has a bath, books and goes to bed 6.30-7pm. The bedtime routine works almost without fail. It’s magic. Collapse.

At night there is: TV, conversation (if we aren’t too tired), work and general electronic distraction eg. Pinterest. Sometimes we watch a series together.

This is how we spend our days.

I am attempting to build some more routine into my weeks around cleaning – because it’s falling a bit flat at the moment and I have a semi inspired list of all the things I’d like to prioritize – one day I’ll find the energy. Small steps. Day to day. Currently am grocery shopping and cooking meals to freeze on Mondays. That’s working well.

Things I do with Claire who is almost 2:

  • Read lots of books
  • Minimize TV time. We do not watch tv during the day. Ever. Not until the 4.30pm slot.
  • One on one play. Drawing/Little People/Animals/Tea parties etc.
  • Cleaning – I let her help where possible, involve her in this so I’m not cleaning while she sleeps.
  • Grocery shopping

Things I should do more of

  • Walks
  • Trips to the park
  • Trips to the library
  • Being outside generally
  • Get a babysitter more

Geoff says I say ‘should’ too much. Sometimes I do. Sometimes I need to.

Baby House Life Parenting

Today’s sacred space.

John 5:1-3,5-9

After this there was a festival of the Jews, and Jesus went up to Jerusalem. Now in Jerusalem by the Sheep Gate there is a pool, called in Hebrew Beth-zatha, which has five porticoes. In these lay many invalids—blind, lame, and paralysed. One man was there who had been ill for thirty-eight years. When Jesus saw him lying there and knew that he had been there a long time, he said to him, ‘Do you want to be made well?’ The sick man answered him, ‘Sir, I have no one to put me into the pool when the water is stirred up; and while I am making my way, someone else steps down ahead of me.’ Jesus said to him, ‘Stand up, take your mat and walk.’ At once the man was made well, and he took up his mat and began to walk.

Passivity, holding back. Alternative solutions. Other ways.

\random thoughts

Christianity