Reflect. This is a word that’s been used a lot in recent years, because it sounds so deep, evaluative, reflective.
This post could go on for ages because I love to fly.
Not always the sitting in a tiny seat for a long time. Not always wailing babies who would not stop crying on a night flight. Not always the pressure on my ears while landing.
Still I love to fly.
I love the thrill I get when I only pass an airport on the highway.
I love the excitement everytime I can book a plane ticket.
I love this great opportunity to visit the most amazing places on earth and meet fascinating people, all by getting on a flying bird for a few hours.
There is a TCK saying: You know you’re a TCK when you were on an airplane before you could walk.
So it seems the “flying gene” is just within us, and all we can do is fight it or just travel, travel, travel. If you know me you also know that I always choose travelling. 🙂
And I am deeply thankful for all the beautiful places these planes have taken me to – these travels have made me who I am, shaped my behavior, my values and gave me a heart wide open to the world and its children.
Only about sixty years ago flying was not an option for people who wanted to go far.
They had to take ships, trains, or cars. It took a lot of time and was often exhausting, but it gave them time to reflect, leave the old world behind and prepare themselves for entering a new one.
With planes we can cross countries and continents within a day, distance is not an obstacle anymore – but does our soul have enough time to come along as well?
Because the soul is what makes traveling so rich and exciting, and it is our soul we’ll miss the most if we leave it somewhere along the way.
It’s Friday with Lisa Jo Baker – go check it out!
I bet a lot of posts today will link the word “tree” with some sort of memory. How is that?
Trees seem to be a symbol for memories, mostly from childhood. They represent safety, comfort, a feeling of home.
There was only one time in my life that I actually lived in a house with a garden.
In Uganda we had a huge compound where the entire team lived, plus a few chicken, a dog and several cats. And a lot of insects and bugs…:)
The garden was beautiful, we had all kinds of flowers in all kinds of colors and shapes; never again have I seen such a diversity of flowers. And we had trees – bananas, casava, pawpaw, nuts, and mango. This one mango tree was the largest in the area and it will always be in my mind as the image of the garden. And the amazing mangos we got from it, so delicious!
I have no idea how old this tree is, but I am sure it would have a lot of stories to tell. Of all the different white people who came to the Ugandan bush, of how they struggled with homesickness, of how they settled into life and rejoiced over every saved life. Of how children grew up under the tree, played in the garden and enjoyed the abundance of God’s creation.
O sweet memories – and all of this because a tree? Well, sometimes it just takes this one word to get you going.
If you’re interested in more thoughts on the prompt word “tree” head over to Lisa Jo Baker‘s Five Minute Friday!
In a society focused on hard work, success and self-accomplishment, this little word “grace” does not come up very often.
We are self-made people, we are educated in school and college, we work hard and bring home some money. We know what we want, we persevere. We build relationships and live happily ever after. We have today and tomorrow and our future planned out.
We’ve got it all. We don’t need grace.
We are wrong.
The fact that I opened my eyes this morning, that I breathe, that I can move my fingers across this keyboard to type these thoughts – that is grace. The comfort I receive from the people around me, the roof over my head, the abundance of food, money and everything else in my life – that is grace. The safety that calms me because I know that my future is in good hands and nothing (NOTHING!) I do or don’t do changes God’s love and blessings for me – that is grace.
My life is given and enriched by grace, there is no part of my life that does not have grace woven into it. I didn’t and can’t do anything to stop this grace from pouring into my life. No accomplishment, no failure, no hard work, no friendship.
We need grace. But more than that – we need the giver of all grace. Him, the giver of truly amazing grace. He has opened the door to grace long ago, and no power on earth can ever shut it.
It’s Friday! Head over to Lisa Jo Baker to read more graceful stories!
What I can say is this: Even though we aren’t together I often wish we were. So badly that it hurts physically. No skype call (even video) can compete with a real hug, lying on the floor laughing so hard your tummy hurts, tasting new food, being still together. Technology brings you close, but not together.
This spiritual connection is such a sweet blessing to every friendship; it encourages and keeps alive the hope that we will be together again – at a place where continents, distance and skype calls don’t exist. Soon.
Laundry. Making dirty things look shiny again. Water. Soap.
Open the flap, put in your clothes and soap, close the flap.
Press the button.
Come back an hour later and your clothes are clean.
I guess this is how most of us do laundry.
Maybe once a week, maybe heaps of it if you have a big family.
Maybe the result is not always pleasing because you have not figured out the “separate your colors” rule yet.
This is laundry in Europe, the US or any other Western country.
But I remember a cooler, social way of doing laundry.
My childhood/teenage memories are filled with images of big pots of hot water, boiling underwear on a charcoal stove, women bending down for several hours, washing heaps of clothes by hand.
This is laundry the Ugandan style.
I remember the girl who used to help us with laundry and other things. Whenever we had a break in our home school rhythm we would sit with her, see how she washes the clothes and gave her a hand. While we rubbed the dirty pieces of clothes against each other, we would chat, exchange the latest news, laugh about the German-African differences, but also share family troubles or just life problems.
Doing laundry was not only about cleaning clothes, but also washing your heart and soul, getting rid of the week’s dirt and baggage.
How come that we do laundry so often, but don’t really take stock of our “emotional laundry”? Might be refreshing, healing, cleansing once in a while.
It’s Friday- over at Lisa Jo Baker you will find a lot more stories on Laundry today!
I guess none of us wants to be called ordinary. We all want to be special, super talented, beautiful, funny, strong, fast, extraordinary.
We are. You are more than ordinary.
There is a God out there saying ‘I have made you, I know every detail about you, inside and out- you are dear to my heart and there is no one like you.’
And yet, I am ordinary. And that is a good place to be in.
Out of my own strength there is nothing else I can be but ordinary. I have a limited amount of strength, I can only work for a certain amount of hours, I can only put a certain degree of make-up on my face each day, and most diet programs don’t work anyway. I can take music lessons, painting lessons, do exercises, work out…but this doesn’t make me less ordinary than other people. It just makes me human.
As a human being I am so glad I got someone in my life who makes me more than ordinary. Who takes everything I have to offer – my talents, my hours of practice, but also my incapabilities, my failures and my weaknesses – and turns them into something beautiful, something extraordinary.
The tasks ahead of me often are more than ordinary; everyday requires extraordinary patience, kindness, love for other people, strength and perseverance in the midst of storms – things an ordinary person could never accomplish.
Well, good to know that the one in me is greater than the storms around me; he fills the empty spaces within me with himself and turns me into so much more than ordinary – truly extraordinary.
It’s Friday, so I am linking up with Lisa Jo Baker to hear other extraordinary stories by ordinary people. See you there?!