I’m reading a book by Susan Jeffers entitled ‘End the struggle and Dance with Life – How to Build Yourself Up When the World Gets You Down’. One of her suggestions is not to be moved by every issues in life but learn to wear the world as loose clothing. At times it is difficult to do so especially when you are living in an unfamiliar culture. I’ve made some great friends and connections over the past 3 months but this doesn’t yet compensate for those moments when I miss home and familiar surroundings.
My greatest challenge here is no longer in achieving but learning to live in a South African culture. Each time I think I am adjusting, something comes along to trip me up and remind me that I am in a foreign country.
It’s not all bad news, I’ve been blessed with great friends and a birthday trip to Robben Island which was quite a moving experience. Thanks to the generosity and hospitality of two ladies from church. It is in times like these that I can see God’s hand at work in sending such angels (Ronny and Joan) to walk with me during this journey in SA. He has been faithful in providing words of encouragement, thru a small gesture or a gift of hospitality when I needed it most.
The Lenten period provided me with a time for reflection especially on the contemporary painting by the International artist Terry Duffy which was displayed at St George’s Cathedral, entitled ‘Victim No Resurrection ? It brings into focus the work of Christ on the cross, that we are not longer victims but victors in Christ Jesus; and so we embrace forgiveness as recipients of grace.
All is going well with counselling and I am settling in at the YW. I’ve also volunteered 3 hrs of my time on Wednesdays to learn barista skills at Motherland Coffee Shop (St George’s Mall) and to explore a personal vision – a step hopefully in the right direction.
I still feel at times like packing up and coming home especially when I come across unfamiliar territories but this is diminishing over time but I am still not sure if I can stick this out until next year. ‘Not my will but thy will be done Lord.’ I realise that in taking the option of leaving before time I may be sabotaging the work God wants to do in my life. There is still a lot to learn and there have been shifts in my personal and spiritual development. I am trying to allow room for this but old habits die hard and so I’ve set myself a goal over Lenten period and beyond, to push pass the point of dismay, the sense of loss and break into a joy that comes from this new experience; To End the Struggle and Dance with Life.
‘When you lean the art of releasing the darkness and embracing the light, you will have learned all you ever need to know about ending the struggle and dancing with life.’
Ironically, I’ve develop the habit of lighting a candle each time I attend mass and praying that God will continue to let my light shine during my time here.
Music especially jazz has become one way of replacing the blues. Thanks to the great music from Titilayo Adedokun. You can check out her page : http://titilayoadedokun.com/
I’ve also submitted to wearing a gown by joining the choir at St Georges Cathedral. Some think it really suits me. Thanks to Jonathan – conductor of St George’s choir.
Here’s an encouraging piece that I found at the back of last Sunday’s service sheet and which I shared with a friend.
Living the Questions
….be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves like locked rooms and like books that are now written in very foreign tongue. Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given you because you would not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps you will then gradually, without noticing it, live along some distant day into the answer. Resolve to be always beginning – to be a beginner! – Maria Rilke from Letters on Love from Soulwork Toward Sunday by Suzanne Guthrie.
May the peace of His resurrection power be with you always. Please don’t forget to support my Mission in SA by praying and donating via my webpage http://firstname.lastname@example.org . Please continue to keep up to date with my journey via my blog revkmr.wordpress.com or if you are on Facebook, please like my page ‘The Rainbow Fairy’ – https://www.facebook.com/RNFairy?fref=ts
“The constant illusion of the satisfaction that externals will bring us ultimately destroys the quality of our lives. It kills our chance to live in a joyful manner. It’s time that we released our hand and let go of the “candies” in order to be free to live a life that is truly worth living, a life that is filled with many exquisite moments.” (Susan Jeffers)
“What counts in life is not the mere fact we have lived. It is what difference we have made to the lives of others that will determine the significance of the life we lead.” (Nelson Mandela)