Searching for a Noun

I’ve been re-reading some of my journal stuff from the last month, and noticing just how much of ‘It’ there has been around recently.

[‘It’ is a nice term I came across this morning that CS Lewis uses to describe a kind of joy/happiness/pleasure that we are very aware of but not very good at describing.  We probably all know what it is, but find it easier to describe its absence than its presence, I think …]

Yeah, there’s been a lot of it around: delight is a good word, wonder is not quite right, good cheer is sweet Dickensian version etc.

[have you noticed how words describe truth rather than invent it, but they can be very helpful in helping us notice it?]

Maybe the best thing is to notice the effect it has:  I’ve had this really exciting feeling (really regularly, especially this week) of being on HOLY GROUND; a kind of reverence that such a cool feeling/thing can come along without you trying for it or inventing it, y’know?  So I guess I’ve been getting a bit wide-eyed at the way being-with-God combines wonderment with happiness, so we can have ‘It’.

a bit too precious

Yeah, so 40days has been continuing, but I’ve not really said anything about it to any of my friends.  It’s an interesting thing when stuff is going on that is affecting (/shaping?) you on the deepest bits of your insides, and then someone asks, "So how’s it been going?"

I’ve kind of come to the conclusion that some things are a bit too precious to talk about in that kind of way – almost like it’s a secret, and the magic would disappear if I said it out loud.  Something like that.

It’s been like that here, the last 3 days in particular – I don’t want to tell anyone about it.  Sorry!

this fracture is an ex-fracture

Yeah well, believe it or not (I do, by the way), but God seems to have healed my shoulder!

It happened yesterday afternoon, when my friend Patrick (and then some more of my symposium) prayed for it – cue 25 minutes worth of the kind of shaking that you can’t fake – and now it’s different.  I can’t say EXACTLY what’s happened, I just know that before I couldn’t move my left arm under its own steam, and now I can!

It looks like God has healed the fracture in my humourous (we couldn’t see it on the x-ray this morning), but the muscles, tendons, ligaments etc. are still out of place and pretty sore – it looks like I’ll need physio to get full movement back.

Nevertheless, quite a few of the things below are out of date now – I can tie my shoes (how exciting!!), I can go to the loo ‘normally’ (and I’m sure you’ll understand what joy that brings), I can use underarm anti-perspirant with either hand, I can hug people, I can play guitar, and – best of all – I can put my hand in my pocket again (WOW!!!).  Life is good.

So thank You God.

It’s Hard

When you have a broken shoulder, you get to:

– ask other people to tie your shoelaces
– have a fabulous bruise, including most of the colours of the rainbow
– dread going to the toilet (you can work that one out …)
– look pitiable and brave at the same time
– have adventures-in-turning-over in the middle of the night
– watch other people carrying heavy stuff, without feeling guilty
– get stuck lying on the floor
– ask nice strangers outside Sainsbury’s to help you put your shirt on
– wear shorts in the shower (to retain dignity in case of emergency)
– smell (more than normal)
– find alternative means of hugging
– feel a great sense of achievement after dressing yourself
– have a decent excuse for pretty much anything you don’t feel like doing

amongst many others …

I’m the King of the Swingers

Hello my dears.  I’m typing this (with slightly frustrating lack of velocity) with my right hand only, since my left is now out of action.  Let me tell you why:

It was a classic sunny afternoon, so we were hanging out under the trees and so forth.  I’ve not climbed a tree for years, but I was quite up for it.  You can see where this is going, yeah?  The inevitability of freewill …

Yes, so I got up there, & then fancied coming down, utilising the ‘monkey method’:  hang on a branch and drop.  But, sadly for my poor shoulder, the branch decided to let go before I did so, leaving me to accelarate sharply and land on my back (quite hard).  Thereafter I got to do all the things that you get to do: neck/body brace; ambulance; laughing gas (quite good, but not funny); long long LONG hospital wait; painkillers; and the rest.  Mostly it was quite boring really, so I’m extra glad that my sister was able to come with me.

So, I have a fracture of the ‘ball’ bit on the end of my humorous (not funny), and a bit of a general shoulder dislocation too – I go back on friday for them to mess around with it.  I would be very up for God healing it (cos it hurts), so if you could please pray for me I’d appreciate that – the healing process will probably take several weeks otherwise.  I wont write more, thanks for reading.

With lots of love …

  x David x

ps. if you do pray, please remember that when I had my face smashed in (back in 2002) I had a proper miracle come out of everyone who prayed for me.  It can & does work.

Slightly puzzled expression mixed with okayness

It’s been quite a long, stretching, perplexing kind of week really, with many ups and downs and other stuff, and I think I’m trying to just let go of ‘knowing what’s going on’ so that I can have a bit of peace about life and the world.  Here’s a great prayer from the Armenian Orthodox Church:

Grant me life, compassionate Lord.
Hear me, merciful Lord.
Be charitable to me, forgiving Lord.
Save me, long-suffering Lord.
Protect me, defender Lord.
Be generous, all-giving Lord.
Free me, all-powerful Lord.
Revive me, restoring Lord.
Raise me again, awe-inspiring Lord.
Enlighten me, heavenly Lord.
Cure me, omnipotent Lord.
Grant pardon, inscrutable Lord.
Bestow gifts, bountiful Lord.
Adorn me with Grace, generous Lord.
Let us be reconciled, healing Lord.
Be accepting, unvengeful Lord.

Wipe away my transgressions, blessed Lord, so that on that day of misery, when I stare at the abyss on either side, I may also catch sight of your salvation, my hope & guardian, and on that terrible journey your angel of peace may sweetly guide me.

Making Poverty History

I was in Edinburgh for about 8 hours yesterday, sandwiched neatly by an astonishing 26 hours of travelling (15 hours going, 11 returning) – getting to NZ is comfortably less than that …

But I have no moans, I’m just so so glad that I was able to be there.  At about 2:30, we had just got moving on the march, and my sister phoned from Kabul to say that she was watching on TV and was so happy to be part of it – isn’t that just wicked?

It’s the big picture stuff that really excites me – the numbers of people/organisations involved, the nations represented, the scale and variety of Live8 concerts etc.  I love seeing things that I belong to, but are so huge as to not require me, y’know?

The only annoying thing about the day was the way the Socialist Worker/Stop the War/anti-capitalist/anarchist peoples tried to turn one of the sweetest and gentlest-natured demonstrations I think there must have ever been, and re-focus it on hate rather than hope.  It left a sad feeling and a bitter taste, as well as leaving me feeling for the Americans in our group.  A few lads put together a banner from a bedsheet in response, saying ‘Make Hijacking Demonstrations History’, and SO many people were thanking them …

Otherwise, it was pretty beautiful, though I felt more solemn than anything else.