Thursday, November 03, 2005

I'm Back

I've been reading blogs, and feel like blogging so I will. I've been looking at Alan's a bit, as well as Maria's. Man, some people think to much, and worry too much. I have a friend like that. She is constantly worried about whether she is doing the right thing. The other day I go to her " you need to relax" and instantly she goes "do you think that's something I should work on"?! Oh my goodness.

I think these kids are just overly concerned about everything.

Since I've gone flatting I have stopped watching the News or reading the Papers. I don't know what Bird Flu is. I don't know about anything. It is so fantastic. Seriously. I am less scared. I am not fed on a diet of media sensationalism. I am not buying into the hype. I already know the world is off to hell in a handbasket. I don't need to know specifics.

I feel like roast chicken.

And gravy.

During the recent "war" in Iraq there were posters around which said "War Porn" in reference to the fact that the "war" was basically screening live on TV 24/7. I thought it was a really clever way to frame it, and it has stuck with me.

Boycott the News I say (and bring back Judy Bailey).

Sorry I'm out of practise at blogging, and suck at it. I'll have to start practising.

He does like someone else

Bah humbug.

Exams are OVER! Yes, I am free, for two beautiful blessed weeks. I am sitting at home, on the laptop, nothing to do but blog and eat.

(simona is still studying)

I have been to the beach so much lately, I have sand in places I didn't even know I had places. Lovely! I LOVE the beach, there is something spiritual about standing in the water with the waves battering against you. Hmmmmm (nothing spiritual about the sand though).

Argh, doing nothing is rotting my brain, I can't think of anything to say.

Dang it.

Friday, October 21, 2005

Can I just say though:

after Sunday and Wednesday night - I feel radically and permanently altered....

Take Me to Bed

I am TIRED. So tired. I went to bed at 5:00am this morning. I, in my 25 year old body, am not built to stay up that late.

I have had the craziest ride this week - Sundays experiance was more than trumped when the girls in my lounge group prayed for me on Wednesday, it is too precious to me to narrow down to words....then I went to work to pick up something yesterday, and my team leader tells me there's no work for me over Summer - so I have to find a new job!

Then last night some friends told us that a guy from church was playing at the Jet Set Lounge, so we went down to watch him. He was a revelation, I knew he was talented but he is SUPER talented. And totally beautiful. And probably interested in someone else, but I am a sucker for tall dark and handsome, which he is all of.


Must sleep, but must also write 2000 words on imagined community.

Kill me.

Monday, October 17, 2005

Slain in the Spirit

I'm so tense, NZ Idol is just being announced it is.....he's opening the's....Rosita!

Wow, the excitement.

Anyway I wanted to write yet again to gloat over what God is doing in me. I still can't get over how fantastic it is to be growing, I suddenly get (after 17 years as a Christian) what everyone was always talking about. Last night at church I was slain in the spirit (that phrase makes me giggle). That is, someone prayed for me and I fell down. It was cool! It's not like the first time or anything, but it was special because I felt that tangible physical presense in my body, and it was real. I so wanted something real. I guess with all the awesome stuff God is doing, I still feel like I am missing the intimacy. It was cool in many ways because it wasn't this random occurance, but an extension of the power of God evident in my life. Now, I am aware many of my readers are not what you might call raging pentecostals. The thought of a meeting where almost every person gets 'Slain in the Spirit' might not ring true with you, once upon a cynical time it certianly would not have sat well with me. But some things just are, they can't be explained, they are mysterious and, well, odd.

And last night, well, it was what it was, and then there was my friend. She undoubtably has an eating disorder, and spends most of her time buried in sadness or so it appears. But there she was, standing alone, arms open wide, eyes up, lost in something mysterious.

Go figure!

Now, its not all so simple as that, nope it never is. But somethings cannot be rationalised, cannot be explained, cannot be fully understood: "The secret things belong to the LORD our God" (here).

Thursday, October 13, 2005


I have FINALLY finished Genesis.

It is SO long.

Farewell friend, and on to Exodus.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

Ah she's in the shower

So I am set loose on the laptop for a very short time. I am working, I am but I must also blog, so as to avoid the guilt trips imposed by those members of the blogging communty who like to hang on my every word.

What to write about. This week the brilliant O2 worship team is going to start learning my song. MY song. I am extremely and unfeasibly excited. Who would have thought, two years ago, that one of the coolest churches in christchurch, not to mention one of the biggest, would be doing one of MY songs. God is so unutterably good to me, it is manifestly unspeakable.

Last Wednesday I took our cell group (we take turns) and it was so cool. In my lounge group there are about 6-8 girls, and to a man we are talkers. We like to discuss. There is no floor hogging, you simply get talked over until you shut up. We all talk, we have varied and interesting points of view, and we don't like to take anything for granted. So, I used the first two commandments as a basis, and we conducted a discussion on WHY God spent two commandments on what appears to be the same thing. First, don't have other Gods, second don't have idols. We use these words fairly interchangeably in modern Christianity, but clearly God wouldn't repeat himself given that there are only 10 commandments. So we explored what the difference might be, and what application it might have in our lives. Then we spent some time individually looking at what those Gods and idols might be in our lives, and paired up. In pairs, we first prayed aloud to confess those Gods and idols, and then the other one prayed for us. It was great, really really great. I got to go with a cool girl who is really seriously struggling and she said that it was the first time in two years that something had got through to her. It was so awesome to be able to help her, listen to her, encourage her and support her.

She was so honest, telling me she wasn't ready to give up the God or the idols because she didnt' want to. She felt terribly helpless, but then we talked about how she could come to GOd with that, and ask him to change the way she felt. She was so excited, becuase finally here was something she felt she could actually do, in all honesty.

What I got out of it was the amazing work God has done in me. As she talked with such shame, I looked at my list of Gods and idols and I did not feel shame. Instead I felt excited about what God could do in me. I felt conviction, I recognised that God needed to change these things in me, but not shame. Man, that is such an enormous thing for me. I cannot believe these words come out of my mouth. He is so the God of the impossible. I was filled with such an excitement and joy about my life.

Argh, it's unexplainable.

She's back! I am caught.

Back to my assignment.

Monday, October 10, 2005

It has been a while

rather a while, but I have been inexcusably busy and Simona hogs the 'puter something chronic. No, she doesn't. That is a bald-face lie.

Oh no, now she wants it back. Stupid essays.

More to come.

Thursday, September 29, 2005

Ralph Hotere

This is my favorite print ever.

Well, a link to it.


I am having a deep week. God has been doing a lot of STUFF in my life. I have been talking about things I never dreamed I would put into words. I have embarked upon a journey I never dreamed I would take. My life is in His hands, and he is moulding me.

I spent years stagnant. I spent years not seeing any change, any movement.

But this week, I see how much change has occurred in me in the last two years. I am truly a new person. Life is so sweet for me, even in the pain or pressure of new places and old places revisited.

I just want to say, I love my church. In Elim I have found a home. I have begun to GROW. I have been challenged and uplifted, offended and frustrated all at once! No church is perfect, I can tell you. Sometimes I sit in church and CRINGE. I get angry and rage against the stupidity I sometimes see. But I am challenged, and constantly reminded that there are other ways of being out there, just as valid as mine. Furthermore, I can honestly believe in the people of Elim. They LOVE God, they are so passionate. So, when they are wrong (in my opinion), at least they are wrong out of passion and determination and not sluggish bored inept dissaffected-ness. I love the praise and worship, the preaching, the community. I am growing. I am free. It feels good.

Must go, Sim wants the 'puter.

See ya soon.

More to come but for now:

This weeks MUST read here.

Thursday, September 22, 2005


So I take my song into my sexy leader/intern person, and my Craig off Shortland St like Director and they liked it! Well, they made me change some bits, but still, they liked it overall! So here is the new revamped version and (hopefully) a quite budget but still usable recording of it (on our pinhole microphone)

Here I am, I stand
Open heart and open hands
I want to go to you
No one else will do

My heart has found its rest in you, in you
This world is not my home, it’s you, it’s you
I lay my burden down, for you, for you
My everything for you, for you.

Your love has found the way
To wipe away my tears
You take me from my chains
From my sin, and from my fears

My heart has found its rest in you, in you
This world is not my home, it’s you, it’s you
I lay my burden down, for you, for you
My everything for you, for you.

Here 'tis:

Monday, September 19, 2005

I'm addicted to Trademe.

I have been asked by my sexy worship team leader/intern person to write some songs for church, and I smilingly agreed.

I have discovered, or actually rediscovered, that its terribly hard to write worship music. My songs are obscure, that is their glory. I bare my naked soul, without actually telling anyone much about what is going on. Writing a song that other people might be able to use is quite another matter.

This is my attempt, and the second draft stage:

Here I am, I stand
Open heart in open hands
I want to go to you
No one else will do

My heart has found its rest in you, in you
This world is not my home, its you, its you
I lay my dreamings down for you, for you
My everything for you, for you.

Take my weary hand
Lead me out of here
Take me from my chains
From my sin, and from my fear

My heart has found its rest in you, in you
This world is not my home, its you, its you
I lay my dreamings down for you, for you
My everything for you, for you.

Well, I don't know. I'll try it out on my tall, dark, handsome Leader tomorrow.



Check out pics...

Thursday, September 15, 2005

Me again

I am supposed to be doing an assignment
You might be able to guess that.

Here are some before and after photos of me.

Before the hair cut

After the hair cut (hopefully).

I will, no doubt, look something like a mix between these two attractive women.

Only I, of course, will look better.

Doing it for the Kids

The blog that follows, on singleness, is extremely well thought out and interesting, however it is also extremely long. Thus, I shall include this pretty picture of me, to look at.

This is for those of you who have no interest in my deep and fascinating thoughts. Furthermore, it is for those of you who think singleness is not a particularly interesting topic. Likewise, it is for those of you who are not really THAT interested in anything I could possible say if it has to be so incredibly long as the below post is. Therefore, in conclusion this post is for everyone who reads my blog. Except, possibly my Mum.


I had a whole post written out before this, to preface it but it disappeared when I tried to spell check, so no luck. (Who reads the preface anyway).

On my student allowance form recently I had to put my relationship status - Tick box Single. Then I had to fill in the date this relationship status began. There was a note "If you are single, fill in with your birth date". Lol. So, I've been single since birth. Incidently, when I received a hard copy of my form, it had the date as 1/1/1870. Terrible.

I am single. My last 'relationship' (and I use that term loosely) ended when I was 17, which, (if you add), means I have been officially single for about 7 1/2 years. THAT is a long time. I'm 25 now. I'm still young enough to not feel left on the shelf. Although, in Christian terms I may well be. It is the fashion these days to marry the first ONE who seems right. I am of the opinion that Christians often marry to young, to quickly, and without seriously thinking about it. I don't think young people often consider the fact that they have to LIVE with this person (whom they've never lived with) for the next 50-60 years. That's a heck of a long time.

I know a couple recently who married and they had dated for 5 years. The wife said that she had waited that long because she wanted to be ready in herself, she wanted to be a whole person before she married him. I totally respected what she said, and was ecstatic that she is such a great role model for the young Christians she was talking to.

I have lots of opinions on marriage, but since I'm not married, I better cut it there and move onto my particular area of expertise.

Singleness is frowned upon. It's like puberty - a necessary space of time and existence, which should be endured politely and exited from at the earliest convenience. It's unpopular. It's like an illness. It's a symptom of being 'not ready' or to eager or just generally immature. But don't worry "God has a perfect man out there for you somewhere". This is the worst though: When I say to someone that I love being single and I hear "that's because you don't have a boyfriend" or "yeah right"!. Pfffff. Shut up smug-ones! My favorites are "you will find someone when you are ready" or "when you stop wanting it, it will happen". As my mother would say "what a put down"! You can imagine the mental gymnastics I put myself through - trying to stop wanting it because I wanted it so badly, but it wouldn't happen if I wanted it.....

The bible actually has a different take on it. Paul refers to singleness and marriage as gifts (1 Corinth 7:7). So singleness is actually a gift. (For a GREAT essay about this look here). At 17 I did not wholeheartedly believe this. Or even halfheartedly. Or at all actually. For YEARS all I wanted was to be in a relationship. ANYONE who knew me then knew that! Lots of people think I had a serious lust problem I imagine, but this could not be further from the truth, although I allowed it to circulate for a laugh.

I have changed. I know longer view singleness as a necessary evil on par with puberty or menopause. Nor do I view it as a preparation ground for marriage, necessarily. It is, as Paul said, (and I paraphrase), good for a woman to be single, because then she can give her whole heart to God. Singleness IS a gift. I LOVE it. I love the freedom, I love the possibilities, I love the anticipation, I love the deep friendships with a variety of people, I love being master of my own life, I love the solitude. I love the sense that I am just me, alone on this voyage. On this pilgrimage.

As a matter of course, there are times when the deep longings rise up and choke me. Last night my eyes found a one that I have long held feelings for, deep down in my heart. There were thousands of people there, but my eyes found him. He looks better than ever. My fingers ache, literally, to touch him. I want to talk to him, to hear how he is, to tell him I pray for him, to invite him out.

These are good, natural, pure, created feelings. I have long tried to suppress them, but that only intensifies the desire. God said to me "I made you this way! To have these feelings. I love you feelings, your desires. Its right to feel that way. But offer them up, a thing precious. And so I do.
My two sets of feelings do not negate each other. They rest in me, in tension always. There is room inside me for more than one feeling.

So there it is, singleness is my role, and perhaps, despite the urgings and commiserations, I will not find that 'perfect person'. In fact, it is a certainty I shall not, since by the time men get over 25 they are far from perfect in my experience. Perhaps I will marry one day, perhaps not. Perhaps my life will fill instead with friendship, career and poverty curing. Maybe I will be Dr Sharyn Brown and buy my own house and travel the world designing fantastically effective and sustainable development strategies. Maybe I will adopt some beautiful child and love it all my life. Maybe I will be free to give my whole heart to God for as long as I live, and maybe my death with be a glorious re-union with Him whom I have set my heart on. Sounds awful doesn't it, how can I bear the thought? Maybe the longings will always be there, deep in my heart. Maybe they will rise up and make me ache as I do in last-night-like moments. Those thoughts do make me quail, but shall I turn back for lack of courage? No, I have put my hand to the plough, and I will not turn back.

This is the song...

"Blessed be your name
In the land that is plentiful
Where the streams of abundance flow
Blessed be your name

Blessed be your name
When I'm found in the desert place
Though I walk through the wilderness
Blessed be your name

Every blessing you pour out,
I turn back to praise
When the darkness closes in, Lord
Still I will say...

Blessed be the name of the Lord
Blessed be your name
Blessed be the name of the Lord
Blessed be your glorious name

Blessed be your name
When the sun's shining down on me
When the world's all as it should be
Blessed be your name

Blessed be your name
On the road marked with suffering
Though there's pain in the offering
Blessed be your name

Every blessing you pour out,
I turn back to praise
When the darkness closes in, Lord
Still I will say...

Blessed be the name of the Lord
Blessed be your name
Blessed be the name of the Lord
Blessed be your glorious name

You give and take away
You give and take away
My heart will choose to say
Blessed be your name...

Friday, September 09, 2005


Yes, I am a crazed fan - Me and Sim found a site and took 'scared' photos. It's from the scene where the dark rider leans over the road, and the hobbits are hiding under a tree root. Terrifying.

Lol...what eggs we are.

Thursday, September 01, 2005


Again. How very weird. Hmmmm.

Well, thanks to EZnet, and Simona's superior computer-setting-up skills, we are safetly installed here at home! So I can 'clog' from the relative comfort of my own kitchen table. Two days ago it was my birthday, my 25th birthday. I was spoilt rotten! I got the best pressies, and surrounded by best friends I ate myself stupid as ever. The diet started today! I am so very lucky in my friendships, and in my family. I smile as I write, so thankful am I.

Simona and I have been faithfully walking 1/2 an hour every night for some time now. Lately we have taken to spending it praying. Tonight we dedicated it entirely to thank yous, not allowing ourselves any petition at all. Half an hour of thank you's is very easy to come by. I feel so uplifted, and I hope that He feels similarly!

One thing Simona thanked Himself for (and I concurred) was the boldness and courage it took for my mum and dad to come 'out of the wilderness'. I am amazed that after 35 years of such narrow living both have been so incredibly willing and successful at living outside the box. There were others of us that did not make it so successfully, who could not live 'in the world' but returned to the prison and locked the doors behind.

Soon I will post a poem I wrote about my experiance of this journey on my poetry blog...look for it tomorrow!

Thursday, August 18, 2005


I should be in BED.

However, I am not. I am at Danielles using her computer. Simona is doing a Sudoku. With a pen. You can't do it with a pen. It's impossible.

You need a pencil.

Hear my latest:

Fall asleep and dream
Pretty, useless dreams
And wake up with His crown upon your head
His cross upon your back...

There's more, but undone as yet.

Can't figure out whether crown or cross should come first.

Wednesday, August 17, 2005

Harry Potter

This monday I woke up very late for Uni. Very late. I was extremely tired and so attired mineself in a pair of Warehouse TrackPants, Chucks, an Old Tee Shirt and... da dum....A Harry Potter Hoodie. (Several sizes to large).

Of to Uni I trot and therein I find myself remembering that this is a COMS class. People who take COMS aspire to News Anchor, Television Reporter and other highly visible careers. (Apart from a lowly few who want to hide themselves away in research positions.). Everyone wears makeup and label clothing.

I felt so extremely mortified by this sudden realisation. And it uncovered in me a deeper insecurity. I take so much esteem from clothes. I don't just wear nice clothes because I like them, but because I think that without them people wont like me. I always wear what I consider to be cool. Very rarely (if ever) do I allow myself a Harry Potter Hoodie Day. I think partly this is because I never get compliments unless I am wearing something new. People never say "you look nice" to me, they say "nice top" or something along those lines. Because I'm quite big size wise and pretty ordinary looking, I compensate by buying clothes all the time (except in my currently poverty stricken state).

Anyway, I was rather challenged by this realisation.

It was good for me to have to just be myself, minus my mask.

Tuesday, August 16, 2005

Living in Beverly Hills

Beverly Hills
That's where I want to be!

Oh not really, but what a rad song eh? Oh yeah.

Hmmmmm my classes are so INTERESTING.

Even the TESTS are interesting. And I know how SO MUCH about the Tongan Farming System that its just fantastic.

My favorite is Sustainable Developement. I love it. It's all so interesting. I have found my niche. And the BEST thing is that my lecturers are working doing the things I want to do. I will have a job one day! DOING sociology! In the Islands! Oh man, I am so excited.

Who knew, I certianly did not, that the Tongan farming system could be of such great interest to me.

Man. I am so happy right now, knowing there's this whole life stretched out in front of me, and perhaps I can make a difference in THIS world.

Mmmm carrying capacity. Treadmill production theories. Livelihood strategies. Don't they just fill your heart with glee?

I am glee-full.

PS Check out this out

Monday, August 15, 2005

So far so good

Have walked ALMOST everyday since we begun last week, can do 50 crunches without extreme agony, and now capable of almost two pushups.

Girl ones.


Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Postcolonial Identities

Sounds fascinating right?

What if your lecturer is incomprehensibly boring? BORING???? Oh my goodness, I just endured three hours of this woman.

HOW did she become a lecturer?


I'm going to nominate her for lecturer of the year, and see if anyone notices the irony.

Tuesday, August 09, 2005


I am on the trail of good health.

Except for the pie I had for lunch, but that's only because it's the cheapest food at Uni and I had to pay a $25 library fine yesterday. (Damn those 3 hour loans).

I went for a half hour walk yesterday, at an extremely energetic pace. Plus I did 50 crunches and approximately one press up.

How long will it last?

Hopefully long enough for me to regain human form.

Saturday, August 06, 2005

Julian Clary

Goodbye is hard.

I said goodbye this week to two people that I have come to love in a relatively short time. I think both will be coming back, but nevertheless, its hard to be saying goodbye. Maybe this has induced my current melancholy mood.

I miss Shannon.
I miss Adam.
I feel for Lara.
I worry about my friend.

I remember that this time two years ago my world was falling apart, and the stab of humiliation still hurts.

I wish it was 4:55 and I could go home.

I wish I blogged more, I wish I had a computer at home or room for one.

End of pity party.
(melancholy is so self conscious)

Wednesday, July 27, 2005


Yiss that's right. I had the most fascinating, brilliant and astonishing thing to blog about, and now it HAS COMPLETELY LEFT ME.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005


I have been thinking about dying recently, although not in a morbid way. I had this moment the other day when I realised that one day my body would die, but I would live on. So perhaps there will be this moment when I realise that I'm dead. WEIRD. And what to do? Where to go? Will it be obvious? Will I know what I'm supposed to be? Or will it be like being born, and will I just get taken somewhere and given something to do?

Strange thoughts, they make me excited in a weird way.

Tuesday, July 19, 2005

I know, it's been a while

On Sunday I moved into my first flat, and a nice one it is too. My last while at home was framed by mixed feelings. I was excited about a new era in my life, and sad for the passing one. I felt such a connection to that time of life - living with my mum and dad. It was hard to leave, even though it was exciting and good too.

I struggled with my feelings in all the days leading up to my big move, but the day dawned well for me and I felt good from then on. Dad helped me move, and it was so lovely to spend that time with him. Plus, he is the Master Trailer Packer, and I managed to get all of my worldly accumulation onto one trailer miraculously.

I have by now managed to spread myself liberally around the flat, and it is beginning to feel like a home to me. It still feels like 'playing house', but I guess reality will sink in soon enough!

Also, Uni has started back, a new term and three new papers. They are all extremely interesting (to me) and usefully interrelated. I am VERY excited about the track my study is on, and feel hopeful about my future wherever it ends up going.

Thanks for checking back! I will hopefully be posting more regularly again, especially when I get my computer set up at home...

Wednesday, July 06, 2005

The Beginning

Well, I love Genesis. Even if Iain has to explain half of it to me. What is going on I do not know sometimes. Genesis is one big mystery - like those people who tell enough to appear open without actually revealing anything.

Nevertheless, I found something I really like. God promises Abram that he will give him more desendants than he can count. A bit further on, and before Abram and Sarai have any kids, poor wee slave woman Hagar is brought in on the act. Basically, they get her to sleep with Abram so that Sarai can have kids through her. (Cos in their estimation I suppose she's not really a person). Once she's pregnant she flaunts her new found power, and Sarai gets MAD. So she starts tormenting Hagar, and Hagar runs off.

But there is God, and he sends an angel out into the wilderness to find her. And when the angel does, he tells her that God has heard about her grief, and so she should call her son Ishmael because that means God Hears. And that Ishmael will be 'wild and free'. And THEN God tells Hagar that she will have more descendants than she can count. Now there it is, Hagar is brought into this situation by Abram and Sarai because they do not care, but GOD cares. So he makes her the same promise he makes Abram.

They say that after that Hagar called God The One Who Sees, because she said "I have seen the one who sees me".

I thought that whole story was so beautiful.

Sunday, July 03, 2005

Dave Dobbyn

(Yiss he has a blog! how COOL is that. It's here. Also, and equally importantly, my older sister now has a blog, and I like it. It's here)

Church tonight, sung again - that makes it three. Yeah, worship team is not what I expected, but I'm trying to take it all in my stride. Sometimes church makes me wanter to loiter around on the fringes. But church can't just be a club, it has to be a community or there's no point. So we must (a) plunge in and get ourselves involved and (b) BE the change we want to see in the [church].

And now for the eternal perspective part of my ravellings. We believe that the world is not our home - we are just apassing through. What happens on earth, therefore, only really has value as it pertains or is important in heaven.

What I mean is this. I care about poverty, I want to do something with my life to make it better. Mostly and initially this has been about the poor - My heart has been broken for the poor and I feel an intense calling to do something to make their lives better. BUT I also care about poverty because I love the West. From an eternal perspective, poverty is in some sense more detrimental to the West than it is to to poor. The poor wont be held responsible for their poverty, it's not their fault. It is, however, by both commission and omission, a sin of the West. Thus, if poverty is to truly be eliminated, it is not the poor, or not ONLY to poor who must change - we must also change the West.

That is one example of the way that I think the modern church or the modern world lacks an eternal perspective. Do ya get it? Am I making sense here?

Te Whenua

I've decided not to blog about my prior points just yet, they need more cogitation.

I have, however, just spent the most fantastic weekend in Kaikoura ever. I'm sure Shannon will post heaps of photos, cos man she took a few.

We went up to see Dave Dobbyn. I hardly even want to blog about it because words don't do it justice, but I shall none the less. If you check my poetry ever you will see some poetry filter through about it I am sure.

The concert was fantastic - he takes you on such a journey. His voice is so different, so untamed and so passionate. His lyrics are straight from heaven, I am sure. Suffice to say Dave Dobbyn is my all time favorite.

The landscape. Mountains and mist. Sea and waves and .....sand and deco houses and falling down baches...birds and shells and a starfish...wind in hair and songs in mouth...the land was poetry such as I will never write...the sunsets just for us...

outrageous design.

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

But that's not to say

I don't believe in signs and wonders, or wish for more here among us Westernese.

Reading the New Testament through recently I was struck by two things.

1. How incredibly central the Holy Spirit was to those people, and how the Holy Spirit was worshiped and glorified.

2. How much those people longed for heaven, and how heaven focussed they were.

Two themes I have been giving much thought too. I think that the modern church, here in Westernese, a. ignores the Holy Spirit too much (bar some movements obviously) and b. is far too earth focussed.

Unfortunately Dad has stolen the heater and my hands are beginning to freeze to the keyboard and my back to front mouse. I will expand later, so please hold the firing squad.

Monday, June 27, 2005

External versus internal

Lately I have been reflecting on the supernatural. There is something in many of us that longs for the supernatural, the concrete experience of God. Miracles I guess. I know I wanted that for so long. I wanted to be filled with the Spirit in a tangible way, that is, I wanted to feel it physically. But I have come to value the still small voice.

This is the story - when Elijah went into the wilderness to meet with God and there was an earthquake, but God wasn't in the earthquake. Then there was a wind, but God wasn't in the wind, and finally a fire, but God wasn't in the fire. And the "after the fire there was the sound of a gentle whisper". And God spoke in a still small voice.

One of the passages I have passed through is that of the still small voice. I learned to let go of the longing for the supernatural, and yearn instead for the gentle whisper. I learned to be lead not by the external but by the internal. The Counselor lives in me.

I have heard criticism of the Western Church, that the 'signs' of God, or the supernatural isn't so prevalent as it is in the Developing World's church. I'm not sure that this is actually a bad thing. Signs and wonders are a marvel, and there IS great power evident in the church of the Two Thirds World. I am excited and challenged by that. But I do not think that the visible lack of supernatural signs and wonders in the Western Church is a reflection of its lack. God moves in mysterious ways.

Wondrous and marvelous miracles have been performed in my life, but the still quiet Voice is the One I treasure

Sunday, June 26, 2005

It's all over

Yep, that's right. Exams are finished for me, and man I feel fantastic. I have had a lazy day, slept in till all hours, did the ironing, ate, watched the Warriors win with my Dad. Such a good feeling.

Plus, now I can actually blog properly, and at regular intervals, instead of posting moans irregularly.

God has looked after me so much, I don't deserve it! My last exam stressed me out BIG TIME, but God helped me study perfectly, so that I was able to answer the questions as well as I possibly could. I couldn't have done better at that exam, even if I'd done hours more study. God is good!

So now, looking forward to Dave Dobbyn next weekend, and moving in the fortnight following that. Wow, flatting. It's a big move for me, but I feel ready and excited.

So yeah, I promise this is the last bad post I post. Promise

Monday, June 20, 2005

My blog is getting boring

I blame study. It has robbed me of my mind. It has robbed me of enthusiasm. It has robbed me even of my sense of humour. I am tired. I am ugly - dressed in worst clothes, hair in disaray, skin outbroken). I am illish, but not enough to get out of my exam tomorrow. I should be in bed, and I still haven't panicked.

I did, however, spent the best part of this afternoon doing the wrong reading.

I also went to pick up my essay today, and discovered that it had not been handed in. Doh. Well, I submitted it via the intranet system at Uni, and it failed. Nevermind, my lecturer is the best, and he marked it for me then and there (I got an A). That was the one about Pakeha ethnicity.

Now I should be in bed trying to get rid of the dark circles under my eyes. But I'm not, I'm up reading all your bloogs and trying not to think about politics. I think I will not vote this year. It seems clear to me that all parties are essentially the same, and nothing really changes. It is in the interests of the power elite to maintain the status quo, and thus it is maintained.

Interesting from today's study (about ratings...actually really enjoyed it once I got into it): that the media does not tell us what to think, only what to think about, that is, they set the agenda. Nobody talks about Rwanda, unless its on the news. Or, more subtly, the media does talk (at length) about the alleged corruption in the goverments of low income countries like Indonesia, but they fail to mention the corruption rife in the governments of America, the UK and our own precious place. Yes, and thus the agenda is set (and the status quo maintained).

Thursday, June 16, 2005


That's right, me and simona just got our Soci III essays back, and we both got an A! So, I am exactly 1% ahead of her, mark wise. Chuckle. I like to win, especially when competing against her raw genius.

Anyway mine was about Race and Ethnicity, and why sociologists don't use the term race anymore, and why they find the term ethnicity more useful. Now I wont recreate my entire essay here - but I wanted to relate some things I found really interesting.

The first was that 'race' is actually a social construction (I seem to use that term a lot at the moment) rather than a biological fact. There is, in fact, no biological or genetic basis for 'race'. There is not one gene that is found only in one 'race' - so there are no genetic 'races' and the difference, genetically, between two people in different 'races' is smaller than the difference between two people within a 'race'.

Lets put that into concrete terms. Take a Scotsman and Nigerian. The difference in their genes is smaller than the difference between two Scotsman, or two Nigerian. Interesting eh! So, when people talk about 'blood' or being half something or quarter something, it's actually very meaningless. Or, completely meaningless.

SO this leaves us with ethnicity. And this is why it's so ridiculous to say "oh well so and so isn't REALLY Maori because he's only half Maori" or "they can't say they're Maori becuase they're half Pakeha" or whatever. Because what are you saying? As far as blood is concerned, nothing. Ethnicity is about identity and culture. Our heritage gives us certian cultural and ethnic resources, which we can choose to use or not - depending on our circumstances or what we value.

Anyway, these are just two interesting points that I thought I'd share.

Simona's was about White Collar Crime. VERY interesting. I actually probably did beat her anyway.

Laugh til We Cry...

Last night I discovered I laughed till I cried. I went to 'Her Self' a women's night at Elim, and the speaker was fantastic. She was so real, and told such FUNNY stories. Loved it.

Anyway, she finished with the funniest story I've ever heard, I laughed until tears ran down my cheeks. But the laughter unlocked something in me, and suddenly, while everyone was still laughing, I found myself crying.


I felt sudden deep raw pain.

What is it doing there?


(I feel fine now)

Tuesday, June 14, 2005

I Can't Study

Well, perhaps more truthfully I don't study. I did yesterday, but today I have done NOTHING. I just cannot bring myself to work.

The problem is, I am not panicked. I have no panic. None. I feel calm. I don't feel worried. It's like some kind of weird dream.

I will probably fail.

But, I just have no panic.

Because, I know I wont fail.

That is the problem.

And I am TIRED.

And there are so many interesting and fun things to do with my time.

Like this. And visiting Shannon and Amy at Opawa, and going to the Art Gallery, and setting up still more blogs. And emailing.

And thinking about artworks I could do, and poems I could write, and songs I could sing.

And planning trips to Kaikoura.

And going flatting.

I need to PUSH THE PANIC BUTTON! But, it has disappeared.


Well it's an ugly pic of me

But I like it all the same.

Vant to see more? Here for a week to week serial of our trip up North.

Monday, June 13, 2005


Just LOOK at my beautiful mother.


Yep, it's exam season and I'm here at uni waiting for Simona to stop blogging about informercials and go get our notes so we can watch the lectures on WebCT.

I actually don't mind exams, as long as I am prepared, and I don't mind preparing because my papers are so inordinately interesting. Plus, I only have two. One is an introductory sociology course which I could sit right now and pass, and the other one is Media Audiences which may prove a wee bit more tricky.

All and all, not too much to worry about.

Which, unfortunately, leaves my mind free to worry about all the other, aforementioned, things.
But yesterday I went to my raging pentecostal church in the morning (complete with end-times sermon) and sung one of my favorite songs: "Everything's alright, I got Jesus with me. Everything's alright, my Saviour's walking with me!". It's such a joyful song, and the truth of it pierces my soul:- "I know you can do all things, no plan of yours can be thwarted" (Job 42:2). HE holds my life in His hands, and thus, I am safe.

The lump of joy in my chest pushes a smile onto my face, and I am content.

Thursday, June 09, 2005

Shameless Plug

I've started a new blog (No Iain, it was MY idea first).

It's just for my poetry.

It's here


I am confused. I am stuck between old church and new church.

I am confused. I am unsure as to how well exactly I have worked through my 'baggage' (I thought it was done)

I am confused. I have made some bad financial choices in the past, and now I don't now what to do about them.

I am confused. I thought I heard from God about a certian action I was to take, and now it seems like I heard wrong.

I am confused. By all this talk of women and who I am supposed to be.

I am confused. I thought I was so secure about myself, and now I meet new people and find myself wondering if they like me and if so, why they would.

I am confused. Stuck in the middle.

That's not to say I am unhappy, just that I am confused.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

DELIGHTFUL Daughters of SIS (whatever that is...)

And I quote:

Although we believe God is all-powerful and does indeed perform miracles, we do not believe the current charismatic trends in the Church are Biblical. He is Lord of all, sovereign and holy, and He does not violate His Word. In addition, we also lift up traditional Christian standards such as...

  1. A belief that God is sovereign. This trust in God's work in our lives impacts the way we live and what we believe. For instance, many on this list believe God is the one who determines family size.

  2. A belief that women are to be modest in dress and behavior. Although there is a general level of modesty that should be maintained (and can be discussed), we believe the father of each household must set the exact standard of dress for his own wife and daughters. Therefore, we ask that detailed discussions on this subject be directed to him.

  3. A belief that women should be trained to primarily be keepers at home. For the most part, this would include staying home under her father's authority until she is married and then serving her husband and children in the home.

  4. A belief that it is God's best for children to be schooled at home.

  5. A belief that it is God's will for wives to be in submission to their husband's authority and for unmarried daughters to be obedient to her parents and under her father's authority until the time that God provides a husband.

  6. A belief that women should not hold positions of leadership in the local Church body.

Sniff sniff...I smell a cult.


I had the best time this weekend. I went to Purau with the best people. I ate the best food (mum's chocolate cake, burgers with pineapple, coconut chocolate). I played the best games (Silent Football, Pictionary, some American crazy painful game). I took photos with other peoples cameras. I looked at the sea and the sky and the hills. I felt at home there in that place.

I laughed until tears ran down my face. I worried about my friends. I felt confused about my life. I felt happy and free. I tried not to think about my 2500 word essay and my 1500 word learning journal due on Friday. I felt hopeful about the future. I marvelled that I have found such great community. I watched my best friends be themselves fully and freely. I sang Karaoke sort of. I slept during the day.

I come home and life assails me once again with its questions and confusions and assignments, (which were there even on the weekend but only quietly).

But still I have the weekend on my mind.

Me, Lee Ann, Brodie, Danielle, Simona with Shannon and Amy in front!

Friday, June 03, 2005

The Only Constant is Diversity....

I've not blogged much recently, busy with Uni, away from computers, sick. But my thoughts have been many and varied. The whole question about diversity has been on my mind, partly because of my Ethnicity paper, partly because of Amy's blog, partly because of my own personal struggles and thoughts. It is amazing that the world is full of completely unique people, no two the same.

Me and Amy have been talking about how much we compare ourselves to other people, and how that is always in a negative light. I wish I were thin, or more quiet or more serious...I look at people who are those things and hold them up for comparison with myself. The key step in life is to STOP doing this, and to accept that you differ from them in a myriad of visible and invisible ways. Amy and I are two very unique and different people with unique and different gifts. If I compare myself to her I feel crap about myself, and if she compares herself to me...well okay she probably feels fantastic but hey! You get what I am saying here.

Once I stop comparing myself to her (and so setting her up as an idol in my life) I can focus on who I am, and how God made me. The other end of the continuum is the same - that I see myself as right and everyone else as wrong. I am PASSIONATE about ending poverty, and some people just aren't. But I have to simultaneously accept myself as I am, and them as they are. It's great I care about those things, and its great they don't because then they are free to care about things I don't really consider. You see? It all fits together.

So, you can see that pride and low self esteem are two ends of the same continuum. It's all just not seeing ourselves as God sees us. When we can balance these two extremes, we are free. Free to live out our lives as God has called us to, and to enable and encourage others to live out theirs. Free to move into the better and deeper things God calls us too.

Sunday, May 29, 2005

Hello and Welcome

Yes, I have cheered up, so no more depressing blogs for a while. Phew, I hear you breathe a sigh of relief. Yes, I am relieved too.

Who has read the Da Vinci Code? Yeah, I know, it's very controversial. It says... ooh no I better not ruin it for those of you who want to read it. Needless to say, it is very controversial. I think it is important to bear in mind that it is a work of fiction, and not in any way intended to contain historical fact. Which is good, because Dan Brown has taken great liberties with historical fact... as the all knowing Wikipedia points out here (I love the Wikipedia). The point I am making is actually not about the book, which in my opinion, does not live up to its excessive hype. The thing on my mind is what the book kind of points to - that we as Christians have lost sight of the sacred feminine.

Now, before you go accusing me of heresy, my thoughts are not as controversial as all that. What I have been thinking is that as Christians (and particlarly as woman) we, in church, ignore the fact that if God is Masculine, he (she?) is equally Feminine. The best we can do, when thinking about God, is come up with metaphors. The way we talk about God, the names of God, these are just shadows and mirages of Who God Actually Is. God's name is "I am Who I am". How awe-fully cryptic, and yet so perfectly correct. God is who He is. God is who She is. Neither is more true, both are metaphors, pictures and images. I think the reality is that God is not neither, but both. God is not a man. God is not a woman. God is not bound by gender, as we are. We must not define God so simply. But, our minds are simple and metaphors are useful. The key thing here is not to be caught up in metaphors, to bear in mind they are just that.

They are useful though, and for me, thinking about the feminine God, the mother heart of God is very helpful. I have issues with men, especially powerful men. I am working through them, but they remain for now. So, at times, my anger at powerful men extends to God, if I refer to Him too often. Sometimes, it is special for me to come to God as Woman. This is because I relate better, and because through it my own specialness as a woman is confirmed. Sometimes the father heart of God is less important to me than the mother heart. Furthermore, I find love from men hard to accept. I find it difficult to see how a man could love me, or respect me. Again, this is just baggage from my past, but when I need love it is special for me to remember that God is a Woman too, and she loves me. Love from women, for me, is easier to accept.

Anyway, these are my thoughts. God as my mother, God as my friend. God loving me with care and compassion, God fiercely defensive of me, as only a woman can be.

She loves me, she does.

Friday, May 27, 2005

Don't Read This It's Depressing

I assumed my questioned would pass unnoticed, or people would just answer it as is. I most definitely did not intend to start an abortion debate. I did not want one on my blog. However, one has arisen, and now my comment is too long for a comment, and has become another blog.
Wouldn't it be convenient if things that were wrong in theory could be right in practise? Unfortunately, if a thing is wrong in theory, it is also wrong in practise, otherwise it would not be wrong at all. I think we can agree that a person becomes a person when they are conceived. Thus, any argument applied to a person fully developed applies to a person not yet developed (otherwise, it would be fine to murder a baby after it had been born, and before it fully developed...). I further think that we can agree that the only time when it is considered right (and I use this term carefully) to kill a person is in self defence. Thus, unless the unborn person is directly threatening another person's life, it cannot be considered right to kill that person. The only flaw in this argument, as I see it, is if you disagreed about an unborn person being a person - which, as far as I can tell, is a logical impossibility.

Furthermore, it would be untrue to say that you can't know if something is right or wrong if you haven't DONE it however, since we know that murder is wrong without murdering, and theft is wrong without stealing etc etc etc.

Although it is, of course, important to come up with Christian arguments for things (since something can't be wrong just because Christians think it's wrong) I am primarily concerned with arguments that are secular. This is because we currently inhabit a secular world, and only arguments that can be logical according to accepted fact will have any wash. Abortion is a wrong that needs to be corrected, it is an inconsistency in our laws. I want an argument to help me change them. Do you see what I mean? (and here I agree with Shawn) I see this as being different from doctrine, although I value doctrine.

Finally, although I have full sympathy for the pain of those victims of rape and incest mentioned, neither of those situations alter the realities of right and wrong. It would be so hard to carry a baby who reminds you of the pain you suffered, but this is a person you are talking about, and one wrong is not helped by another. It will not make the situation better long term by adding a wrong to the one already committed. Emotion clouds judgment, but it does not change the rights and wrongs. My friend had an abortion not so long ago because she was raped, and I never attempted to change her mind. As long as I live I will regret that, and so does she. I knew it was wrong, and so did she, and yet neither of us had the courage of our convictions. Of course it makes it harder to act rightly, but the harder road is often the right one and how we wish we had taken it.

Abortion is such an emotive issue, and not one I want to get into on this blog. As I see it, the laws of the land are unlikely to change. Abortion is seen as a solution to a problem, and we live, after all, in a problem solving society. In the long term, I am sure, we will find out that abortion is not a solution at all, but rather a problem in itself. It is, in some ways, a product of our sick society, where convenience is our first concern, and perfection worshipped.

The worst thing is that I really have no intention of doing anything about this. What can I do? The 60's and 70's have passed, people do not protest any more. We used to think we had a voice, now we know we don't. If I am truly honest, what I really want is to be right. This sickens me. I wish I were different, but I am not. So self righteous I am, railing against the apathetic masses, but I myself am one of them. God, make me different.

Thursday, May 26, 2005

A question...

Okay, do you think it would be fair to assume (in the philosophical sense) that the fact of existance ought to guarantee the right of existance. That is, if a person exists, the fact of their existance gives them the right to exist.

Tuesday, May 24, 2005

In the Disabled Bay I am

And feeling quite at home in front of my abnormally large screen, fumbling with this abnormal and difficult mouse. Sheebers.

Simona is here reading about White Collar Crime (actually a very fascinating subject). I am not, I am just 'helping'. Which means reading out her outline at strategic points and stopping her from using the internet. Oh, and fixing her spelling and grammer.

Watch Star Wars we did. Yes, I was supposed to be studying and so was she, but to Starwars we went. And a tragic movie it is too, but that's all I will say. And disturbing for someone of my delicate sensibilities.

Simona, you are reading my blog and not your book, don't think I don't notice.

Ah what a world of controversy this blogging is creating at the moment. Shall I submit my views on the civil unions bill for perusal? I think not, a dead issue it is, and not to be brought up on my blog. ;-) Controversy I do not like (sounding like Yoda I do not like).

Time to stop, before I cross to the dark side.

Monday, May 23, 2005

A Moment in Which to Recover

I am taking a moment to recover my brain. I have now written just under 1500 words on the usefulness and unusefulness of the concepts of ethnicity and race respectively. I am exhausted and also hungry. Did I mention exhausted? I am. My mind is tired. My body is tired. My emotions are tired. My eyes are tired. My fingers are tired. My inner voice is tired (tired of being unwaveringly enthusiastic and optimistic). I feel like I've been at it for weeks, but this is untrue.

I have a new idea for a reality show though, which brings me brief moments of joy. It will be called DHB Dream Transplant. What happens is two deserving people with kidney failure will be chosen to receive a kidney transplant. They will then have six weeks in which to recover, and to demonstrate their recovery they will need to complete certain challenges week by week. After the six weeks is up, the audience will vote to ascertain which one has recovered best. The winner gets to keep the kidney, and the loser's kidney will go up for auction. (They will have a chance to bid on it thanks to ANZ Personal Loans). Does this sound like a winner to you?

Thank you, I'm here all week.

(Disclaimer: this is not all my own work)

Also, another moment of Joy - Jesus in a Hoodie.

Sunday, May 22, 2005

Praying as conversation

I haven't been feeling fabulous lately, which is probably why my blogs have been such downers. ;-) Uni has been hard work, and because of that I hardly see my friends, and that makes me feel crap. But, the important work of learning to turn firstly to God has been greatly enhanced by this. When, at night, I feel low, I want to text my friends and get them to cheer me up. Often I do, but sometimes I think to myself, no. Here is an opportunity to turn to God first and let HIM cheer me up and comfort me. After all, if I say I love him first, I better practise it.

So, I have been working on prayer as conversation lately. What this means, for me, is that I spurn all jargon, and speak to God, outloud, as if he were right there sitting on my bed. Which, of course, I believe He is. This is quite a discipline. No more "I just pray", or "please just do this", because I would never talk to any person like that. I do pray like that mostly, because it serves its purpose. I am not against jargon, it's useful. But sometimes not allowing myself to fall back onto old ways of praying challenges me into better honesty.

And, quite frankly, it works. I did feel cheered up last night. Plus, I felt like I really prayed, with my mind as well as the rest of me. And I find that is not as easy as it sounds.

Friday, May 20, 2005

Being Pakeha Part II

Well, it seems I have struck a nerve. I was about to reply to some of the comments on my last post, but it seemed that it was more blog worthy.

All of the comments were very interesting, and revealed that this is a topic that is close to the heart of those of us who form the majority. This flies in the face of what many scholars think about majority groups, but confirms what my feelings are. In this day and age where ethnicity and culture are so important, the question arises in those of us whose culture goes unacknowledged, particularly by the modern media.

I choose the term Pakeha to describe myself for several reasons, the first being that the myth of its negative origins is now well and truly exploded. Pakeha does not mean village flea or maggot or white pig. Rest your minds! The second is that it acknowleges the Maori culture which is important to me, because I both love and respect it. Thirdly, for me, the term New Zealander is incomplete, since it does not acknowlege any ethnicity. Whatever the politicians would like us to think, we are not 'one people' but many peoples, and learning to live with each other and celebrate difference is a key challenge. Fourthly, well you know what I think of 'New Zealand European', although I was both challenged and comforted by Lynn's point of view.

So, I love the term Pakeha, and what it represents in and of itself. But my question remains, what is my culture? Do I have one? Yes, clearly I have an identity, but what is that constructed of. Perhaps more clearly, my question is, what is my ethnicity, what is it about being Pakeha that is different from any other ethnicity?

This is my journey. Your comments uplifted me, and challenged me. Thanks for joining me on it.

Thursday, May 19, 2005

Being Pakeha...

Do I have a culture?

Surely, I must have a culture.

The term European New Zealander always makes me so cross. I am not European. I have no connection to Europe. I always cross that out on the forms and write New Zealander, or more lately Pakeha.

I am Pakeha. But, what does that mean?

I have the travel bug...

I do, I want to go on holiday. Now, this may be in part due to the horrendous amount of work I ought to be doing (at this very moment), in fact, it maybe entirely for this reason, but whatever. I have it. Last year I went tramping up to Lake Daniels (perhaps tramping overstates what actually occured). Today, as I pulled on my long socks and my thermal singlet, the longing caught me. The fresh air, the toadstools, the little robins unafraid, the great fallen trees, the quiet, the solitude.

Ah, to be out.

Cities are so filthy aren't they? Sometimes I am just so sickened. I would live in the country, if it were more convenient. I get disgusted sometimes at the thought of all the fumes and the rubbish. Urgh.

I wish I could pack a bag and go for a walk to Lake Daniels, where God is evident in every little thing. Last time, I stood on the wharf over the lake and sung hymns.

Then when I looked into the water
I saw the stars had fallen in

Wednesday, May 18, 2005


I am a HUGE fan of quotes and proverbs...and a brilliant one appeared on my fat little friend's blog - Simona.


This is another...

God is subtle, but He is not malicious.

I think it's Albert Einstein. This quote has been an absolute keystone in my walk with God. Understanding pain and suffering is so much easier when I think of it as God's subtlety, and not his maliciousness.

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Especially When You're SUCH a Liar

Tonight, I learned (once again) that honesty is the best policy.

I have the worst assignment in the history of the world, and I just can't do it. Anyway, I work all day tomorrow, but I really needed to take it off, so I could finish my assignment. Otherwise, I may as well quit uni and get my money back. So, there are two options.

Option One: Lie and say I'm sick

Option Two: Tell the truth, and not get the day off

A few weeks ago, I took Option One. In an unbelievable coincidence, all of the computers at Uni were down, just for that one day, so I couldn't do any work at all.

Today, I took Option Two. And, my boss (God bless her) said take the day off.

So, I told the truth, and I got the day off.

He Smiles On Me.

Monday, May 16, 2005

Ten Things I Love About Nandor Tanczos

Okay, one thing.

He tried to give David Benson-Pope an invoice for $54 millions dollars, for all the student allowances that they promised to pay, and never did.

Fantastic!!! See, at least Nandor cares.

Futhermore, I recommend his blurb on fatherhood. I thought it was most lucid, moving actually.

1.8 Kilos

Yes folks, that's how much I lost this week. Ah, I feel so self satisfied. How did it happen? I don't deserve it. I had cheescake on Saturday night, for crying out loud. Cheesecake contains all the fat and sugar intake you require for a week. Anyway, why look too deeply into these things? I lost 1.8 Kilos, probably because I'm so fantastic.

On a slightly different note - self satisfied is exactly how God never lets me stay, at least not for long. I was just feeling like I trust God oh so much, and everything is so great (and by everything, I mean me). Then bam he asks something of me that is so hard, I can hardly do it. I don't think I can do it. It is HARD to trust Him. Why is it so hard? He is God, after all. God the Uncreated. All power belongs to Him, literally. He can create the world, but he can't come through for me, in this thing? I know, its irrational. But, I hear Him say, "He knows we are dust". Yep, He knows what we are made of.

But, deep down, I know what He is made of, and somehow the courage comes to trust Him.

I hope!

Sunday, May 15, 2005

And Jumping on the Joke Bandwagon

From my Mum (a venerable woman):

I know why it's good to have friends my own age.

If I repeat something I already told them, they don't remember.

Hearts are aflutter...

I think I met the man of my dreams last night. Now, I should qualify that by saying he was and is so far out of my league that he may actually be playing a different game. However, it gives me hope that there may still be one or two single, Christian, perfect men left in the world. Yes, he was good looking, masculine, funny, very intelligent, laid back and yet capable of serious thought, a Christian, and he laughed at my jokes.

They exist!


Thursday, May 12, 2005

You can be great...

Most people know that my life mission is to end world poverty. Last year, when I took a first year sociology paper, I not only discovered my major, I also discovered my life's great passion. I heard for the first time how poverty is not some natural disaster, but the disgusting product of greed, and the imbalance of power. I heard the figures, I learned the theory, the history. I was, in some way, traumatized. Then, shortly after I went to Parachute, and listened to the World Vision speakers, especially Princess Zulu who has the aids virus.

I want to tell you that my heart was broken, and not by human hands.

Excerpts from Bono's speech to the Labour Party in Britain:

"...justice is a tougher standard. Africa makes a fool of our idea of justice; it makes a farce of our idea of equality. It mocks our pieties, it doubts our concern, it questions our commitment.
Because there's no way we can look at Africa- a continent bursting into flames - and if we're honest, conclude that it would ever be allowed to happen anywhere else. Anywhere else. Certainly not here. In Europe. Or America. Or Australia, or Canada.
There's just no chance.

...We are the first generation that can look extreme and stupid poverty in the eye, look across the water to Africa and elsewhere and say this and mean it: we have the cash,we have the drugs,we have the science -- but do we have the will? Do we have the will to make poverty history? Some say we can't afford to. I say we can't afford not to".

His speech is fantastic. Read it, it is fantastic. I have a deep fear that my grandchildren will not look kindly on my generation, when they learn at school that:

30,000 (real) children die every day from preventable poverty-related causes;
800 million (real) people suffer from hunger; and
1.2 billion (real) people live on less than US$1 a day.

And like I said, this is not some natural disaster - they pay with their lives for our luxuries. That sounds like I am being melodramatic, but actually, it is the truth. If you have any money in your pocket, or your wallet, or your bank account - you are richer than 92% of the worlds population. Sickened? I am.

Nelson Mandela to finish:

"Like slavery and apartheid, poverty is not natural. It is man-made and it can be overcome and eradicated by the actions of human beings...

Sometimes it falls upon a generation to be great. You can be that great generation. Let your greatness blossom. Of course the task will not be easy. But not to do this would be a crime against humanity, against which I ask all humanity now to rise up. Make Poverty History in 2005. Make History in 2005. Then we can all stand with our heads held high".

Inspired? I am. If so, head to the World Vision site and see what YOU can do.

Happy Birthday Mum

The Top Ten Things I love About My Mum:

10. She reads my Blogspot, and makes thoughtful comments
9. She makes the best Pumpkin Soup and the best Jam in the world.
8. She knows how to text, and she texts me
7. She reads my essays and fixes them
6. One word - Miracles (it's the chocolate, it's the jam)
5. She thinks I am fantastic, and she tells me.
4. She is a great speaker, and she loves people
3. She is kind and thoughtful AND strong and couragous all at the same time.
2. She is the most amazing Christian I've ever known (as well as my Dad)
1. She is funny, she is brave, she is determined and she makes me feel loved.

Is it a bird? Is it a plane? No! It's Superwoman!!!

I love you Mum, Happy Birthday.

Tuesday, May 10, 2005

Ghost of Christmas Past

Recently, I saw someone from my not so distant past. Today I spoke to someone from my VERY distant past. In my mind I am constantly wondering "what did they think? Can they see I am different? Do they remember who I was?" In a town as small as Christchurch, the past is always just around the corner, or sitting at the end of your pew. There's no escaping it.

"Time takes time" according to Ben Folds, and he is right. The past is pain, at times, and it's hard when the pain is introduced into the new season, by the people who carry it with them. I made a fool of myself in my past, and when I see those people who saw it, I am reminded (and humiliated).

But, why be negative? I am changed - not remade, but reborn. I am free from the past and its constraints, and I am not that person anymore. I am also free of other people's expectations and judgments of me. What is important is God's expectation and judgment of me...and also, to a lesser degree, my own.

When I see these people, when the intial torment subsides, I am AMAZED at what God can do, and at what HE has done in me. Surrender to him, I beg you. Not in word only, but in deed. Tell Him, do what you will with me, whether I want you to or not. Give Him permission to do in you, what you would not have him do. He is GOD after all, God the uncreated, God the Faithful. What is there to fear? "For our present troubles are quite small and won't last very long. Yet they produce for us an immeasurably great glory that will last forever!" (1 Corinthians 4:17)

All For Jesus.

Monday, May 09, 2005

Signs of Life

You are so vague to me
Sometimes I think you're barely there at all
A quiet God who speaks between great intervals of silence

And if I still my thoughts for long enough
I might feel something
And be assured that you are there (for me)

But I am tired of summoning you up in my own mind
And giving you my faces and my words
I think I'll leave you to your own devices

And suddenly you're there
The moment that I look away
You appear

I wrote this a while ago, about three years I would say. I was so tired of God's silence, I wanted the supernatural. I wanted to HEAR him, I wanted some sign of life. He felt absent, I did not fully understand at the time that this was part of his 'character building'.

I think we are so often like that. We want to FEEL something, we want to have the concrete experience. But God is not like that, more often than not. I love this quote "God is subtle, but he is not malicious". Subtle He is, most often. His leading of us is almost imperceptible, thus His work is better viewed retrospectively. Once I understood this, my Christian experience became somewhat easier. I had to learn to surrender my longing for the dramatic, and look instead for God's subtleties in my life.

His fingerprints are for the signs...

Saturday, May 07, 2005

Life As A Lemming

"Because it's like that time has been forgotten (which in a way is a good thing) but maybe I felt that my experience of that time has been forgotten and invalid."

Amy's post today really moved me. I am one of the lemmings. For so long I loved Opawa, I believed in Opawa, I worked and gave my heart to Opawa. My relationship with God crumbled and I never noticed until it was gone, because I never put anything above Opawa. Opawa was my world.

Such a state of affairs cannot last indefinitely, and there came a time when it was right for me to leave. That time was about two years ago, just before the winds of change began to sweep over Opawa. I think often if ONLY I had waited, just a short time. If only I had hung on, not given up, not escaped. All the years would have seen a harvest. As it is, Amy's words echo in my heart. My experience of that time has been forgotten and invalid, and my contribution to what Opawa is now has been obsoleted. I mean nothing at Opawa anymore. All the years when I was right there, up the front....working and praying and giving everything I had, and now all the new people don't even know my name. It's so painful, so strange, so surreal.

I am not sorry I left, I have found a new place, I know I am where God wants me, my relationship is restored, I am so happy with myself, I am FREE. I have discovered what Church can be like. I wish though, that I had stayed just a little longer, so I could have been part of the new Opawa, so I could have been part of the harvest.

As it is, I am so PROUD of Amy and all the others, who didn't flee like rats from a sinking ship. I am in awe. I am glad that Opawa is changing, I am glad that there is hope, even out of such brokeness. I remember well how awful it was when the others left, I am sorry I added to that awfulness. I wish Opawa, and all who dwell there, the very best of God's blessings.

Thursday, May 05, 2005

The question is...

Did I spill the raspberry on the carpet, or was it there when Mum and Dad went away? Hahah, just kidding Dad....there's no raspberry.

I am supposed to be in my Ethnicity Tutorial at the moment, but I decided that my time would be better spent catching up on my readings. And, instead here I am. I encourage all and sundry readers (both of you) to get your own blogs, because there is something manifestly empowering about having a form of expression that is YOURS AND YOURS ALONE! Self indulgent it may be, but it helps.

This is what I have been (God has been) forming in my mind...this idea of myself as a unique person who is profoundly alone in an individual sense. Does that sound depressing? It used to depress me when people said, 'there's nobody like you'. I used to think to mineself, well then, I am totally alone. But NOW, that feels like freedom. I am the only person in my life from start to finish. I look at my life, and it is just mine. Others come and go, I have differing connections with different people...parents, siblings, friends...perhaps a husband and children one day, but EACH of them is only there for part of the journey. The only one who is there the whole time is me. (And, God of course...but that's a given, and not what I am referring too).

See, the best metaphor of life for me is a journey, or a pilgrimage, if you will, and on this pilgrimage there is just me. And that is such a great feeling! Have I explained myself? Perhaps not. This idea or conception of myself is EMPOWERING for me. Because, if my life is entirely my own, I ought not spend it trying to please others, whose life it is not. It's MY journey, and I get to choose the directions.

So my blog, in one way, is an expression of this, because it is a page all about me (it's all about me...). I create it, I write it, I link to things I like, I talk about things that matter to me. It's a representation of myself and, significantly, a public one. This is a great feeling. Is this terrible? Self indulgent? Hope not.

Wednesday, May 04, 2005

W B Yeats

This is the poem I referred to (and incorrectly quoted...)

When You are Old

When you are old and grey and full of sleep,
And nodding by the fire, take down this book,
And slowly read, and dream of the soft look
Your eyes had once, and of their shadows deep;

How many loved your moments of glad grace,
And loved your beauty with love false or true,
But one man loved the pilgrim soul in you,
And loved the sorrows of your changing face;

And bending down beside the glowing bars,
Murmur, a little sadly, how Love fled
And paced upon the mountains overhead
And hid his face amid a crowd of stars.

Isn't that lovely? I love this poem, especially the pilgrim soul/changing face lines.


I went and looked at the other pilgrim souls blog, and she seems nice. I wonder if she got it from Yeats? I didn't like to ask, it didn't seem like great timing. Plus, since she is here first, I have sort of stolen her thing. Its a great poem though.

Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Finest Food

I am 24, and I am single. I have BEEN single for a long time now, much longer than I thought I would be. Sometimes singleness looks like freedom, and sometimes it looks like pain, but always it is there, in the background of my life. I have come to look on it as a gift, but it is a bittersweet one.


There are these dreams - dreams that cause me to long for something other than singleness. Not sexual dreams, dreams of love, that stay with me all day. The longing in me for this love is deep, very deep. Also, there is a man. I barely know him (it is always so) but I see in him something I would have, and this causes me pain, because I know how these things end. I BEG God to take this longing away, but he does not. He shows me that this longing is good - it is how he intended me to be, and he will not take it away, since it is intended. Instead, he says, hold it up as "a thing precious", an offering of a good thing. And then he says "I will satisfy you, like the finest of foods". (Psalm 63). This is a hard thing, a thing that burns me, but I love to hear his voice. He looks at me, and I am deeply aware that he KNOWS me. So, there is sadness, but also, there is joy.


Now we live with a wonderful expectation because Jesus Christ rose again from the dead. For God has reserved a priceless inheritance for his children. It is kept in Heaven for you, pure and undefiled beyond the reach of change and decay. (1 Peter 1:3-4 NLT)


(You should not think that I am sad, this is not so. I have joy, because I know he builds in me righteousness, and because his way IS the best way. Also, I am happy - life is sweet.)

Monday, May 02, 2005

My First Blog EVER.

Well, this is an exciting first ever post. My first venture into the world of blogs. It's a little scary, since it's for the world to see. However, this fear is tempered by the fact that NOBODY KNOWS I'M HERE! Lol.

I don't know what to say, perhaps brevity is my best bet.

On the other hand....

Today has been nice. It is raining outside, but I am inside, warmed by lovely fire I created.

Do you know, I wanted to use pilgrim soul as my web address, because I LOVE that idea (from a poem by....W B Yeats: "But one man loved the pilgrim soul in me"), but someone else has STOLEN IT! So I tried various combinations, and I think I have come out with thepilgrimsouls. Or some such thing. Anyway, I shall post this and go see WHO has stolen MY address, and why.

Ka Kite Ano.