Sunday, 27 February 2005

a thought for Sunday

i needed to fill my mind with some inspiring thoughts today. i read rutledge's sermon 'the bottomless glass' and it just seemed to give me what i needed.

Whenever you find yourself asking, "is that all there is?" remember: no, it is not all. There is the promise of God through faith in Jesus Christ, and that is everything. And please understand this: the promise of Jesus does not refer only to some far-off future day. He gives his life to us now, not a life of partying and drinking and conspicuous consumption ending in emptiness, but a life of service to others and to God's suffering world, a life that is built not on chasing dreams and fantasies, but being built by the Holy Spirit into a fellowship of love that gathers even now at the Lord's table. He, the only-begotten, the Messiah of Israel, is the One, the only One who is able to give purification, the only One who is able to wipe away regret forever, the only One in whose name we find ourselves redeemed and restored and brought into an eternal future where there will be no need to search for dreams, because the dream of all humanity is summed up in the Cross and in the Resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ. He goes to prepare a place for us at his own unending banquet. May he confirm this truth in your hearts, today and for ever.


from 'The Bottomless Glass' in The Bible and the New York Times by Fleming Rutledge [William B Eerdmans Publishing Company, Michigan, p73]

Tuesday, 22 February 2005

goldfish brain

some days are harder to get going than others. at the moment my bed seems like the place i want to be the most.

i had to make a Real Effort this morning, but then decided it was all or nothing. so i put on a skirt and nice shoes (i usually wear jeans or shorts and sneakers), blow dried my hair and even put make up on. amazing how much better it made me feel! it seems like a traitorous conceit in some ways - i hate the idea of self-worth being tied up in appearance, but then i suppose sometimes everyone needs costume and artifice. i must look different because my boss asked whether i'd had a haircut - he doesn't normally comment on appearance at all.

i think today it is better to be at work than at home on my own (never thought i'd say that). my mind is doing irritating things when i'm on my own, like trawling over situations that i feel like i've already sorted out, and upsetting me all over again. when i'm at work those thoughts flit around the edge of my consciousness but i don't have the opportunity to dwell on them.

i'm starting to feel like i might be getting better and stronger, bit by bit. or at least the peaks and troughs of melodrama are getting smaller, so the recovery time between mood swings is shorter. :) the whole situation of my emotional state in the last couple of months just proves to me how flimsy our own constructs are, how we think we have built ourselves little emotional fortresses with impregnable walls and super-pointy defences, but it can take only one (fairly swift) blow to reduce the whole thing to rubble. more and more i understand what it means to commit everything to God, to trust him and to know that he is not letting me go, no matter what i do or how much i blunder through life. it's a lesson i have to learn again and again, but every time i come back to it i see a new facet of God's grace and feel such gratitude and peace, i am amazed i could ever forget it.

Thursday, 17 February 2005

beautiful machines and absolute willoughbies

we're upgrading our database at work to a whole new system. it's a lovely new design and i have confidence that it is all going to work well in the end, but at the moment we're doing double entry and trying to understand the new logic and the way our database designer thinks. it makes sense (eventually) but i think our brains are all a bit full. i've even bowed to pressure and had an instant coffee because i was desperate and the plunger disappeared to a staff retreat last weekend (we didn't even get a postcard!).

but the thing that makes it all alright for me is the fact that i am doing it all on my new iMac. it maketh me glad.

which is just as well, because i have been extremely angry and am having to smooth down my violent tendencies, so it's nice to have something white and soothing to look at all day. the reason? a truth has been revealed in the days since doing the jane austen quiz from the last post. i have been lately involved (and spectacularly uninvolved) with a willoughby. how could this happen? how could a girl who has such a captivating singing voice and who plays the pianoforte so beautifully allow herself to get involved with such a...such a...such a willoughby?

ask ms austen. it's all her fault. and if you don't know what a willoughby is, rent sense and sensibility, watch it, and then tell me what you think.

Tuesday, 15 February 2005

i really shouldn't read karen's blog

it makes for excellent procrastination.

but this quiz is excessively diverting. here is what my results show:

:: M A R I A N N E ::

You are Marianne Dashwood of Sense & Sensibility! You are impulsive, romantic, impatient, and perhaps a little too vocal in your honesty. You enjoy romantic poetry and novels, and play the pianoforte beautifully. To boot, your singing voice is captivating. You feel deeply, and love passionately.

how did they know? :)

(i did say i would have jennifer ehle play me, but i could cope with kate winslet...)

view from the garret

here i am on another work-sanctioned day at home, and it's a good place to be. i still love my lovely art deco flat and the space and solitude. at times i have felt a little lonely, but there are friends and family within a block of me so i haven't got any excuse for wallowing. also useful for when i haven't got enough money or energy to make a decent meal because none of them like to see me go hungry. :)

kensington is pretty green so i have lots of lush trees to look at. i seem to be living in the catholic precinct, with st joseph's primary school, our lady of the sacred heart girls' high school, a convent and a monastery all in my street. the convent and monastery are beautiful buildings, with arches and gables, set on the hill. they light them up at night sometimes. my mother always thought it was funny that the most romantic buildings around here are where the nuns and monks live.

i just saw some people i know walk past my window. they looked up at my window and i don't think they could see me with the glare from outside, but it gave me the strangest feeling, like everything had gone out of kilter for a second. so weird when you see people out of context. i remember when i was working in child care and saw one of the kindy kids in coles with his mum and he just stood in the middle of the aisle, his mouth wide open, staring at me, completely unable to speak or move. his mum and i thought it was pretty funny, but i do get it.


ha. i survived valentine's day without getting too grumpy or violent, despite the sky writer writing 'happy V Day' across the blank blue sky as i walked to work. even more than valentine's day itself, i hate the practice of calling it 'V Day', which to me sounds like the celebration of an STD.

Friday, 4 February 2005

lost souls

what happens when you lose people?

when it's a death, well, that's final obviously. there's not much you can do about it, except to go through the grieving process and that leaves residue that you can never get rid of. my mum says she still misses her friend barry, still cries every now and again for him, and he died nine years ago. she still misses her mum and she died twenty six years ago. hey, i still miss both of them too.

but what happens when people just wander out of your life, people that you thought you were bonded so tightly to? i think about friends that i've had over the years, people i've loved intensely, who i don't even see anymore. every so often something will remind me of them, i'll drive past a place we went together, i'll hear a song we used to sing. sometimes i'll even pass them in the street or the supermarket and it's like i never knew them.

it's also horrible when you can feel someone slipping away. when something happens and you know that nothing will ever be the same again and perhaps life in the future will not include that person. it's a weird sort of perspicacity, unsettling and in some ways unwelcome. but the only encouraging thing i can take from that is seeing that although you lose some friends, you find others along the way. and some become so tightly woven into your fabric that you can never rip them out or have them fall away. i like those ones.

Wednesday, 2 February 2005


i have started working from home one day a week (this week it's two days, yahoo). this is to give me time and space to do 'creative' things, unhindered by the phone or processing mail. it's been great so far, in fact strangely enough i find it easier to work longer hours (which is good, as i usually flake out very quickly in the office). have been redeveloping our website, and the next task is to condense a 18000 word thesis into 4000 words for an article in our new journal. hmm...someone likened it to turning lead into gold...i think i'm up for the challenge!

i've started doing an evening course at moore college with my mum. it leads to the diploma of biblical studies, but as i'm only doing one subject a term it will take some time to get there. besides which, i'm not doing it for the diploma - even after only one class (last night), it feels so good to have my brain stretched a bit. the subject this term is doctrine 1. last night we looked at what we base our concept of God on, the authority and reliability of Scripture, Biblical inspiration and its implications...etc.

Then, in a lovely moment of co-ordination, this morning I read 'the new form of speech' in the fleming rutledge book the bible and the new york times and it was all about the importance and significance of God's Word and the preaching of his Word and that "God does not exist in unbroken silence. He has communicated. He has gone out from himself in self-expression. But this expression is not through vision; it is through audition."

she's a cool writer/preacher, even if her name does sound like a jk rowling character. check her out if you can.