Sunday, 13 March 2011


When I see pictures like this I marvel at our planet.  I am in awe at its beauty.  I see the creation of God before me.  A world that once, for a short time, He was well pleased with.  We happily accept the creation of a loving God because we enjoy it. 

We ski in the mountains He formed, we walk along riverbanks decorated with flowers and blossom trees He renews each year.  We swim in the sea and then run out to play in the sand, taking delight in the fun where two days of His creation merge.  The creation of His world is beyond our comprehension and we happily live in it.

When I see pictures like this I marvel at our planet.  I am in awe at its destruction.  I see the creation of God devastated.  A world that is slowly crumbling away, a world He mourns for.  We cry and feel helpless when we see the creation of God so cruelly destroyed.  Yet, when the planet is beautiful and working the way we want, we are happy to acknowledge His ownership of its beginnings.

However, when destruction occurs, God is the first to be blamed, even by atheists.  Suddenly, His presence becomes more of a reality and a likelihood.  Nature loses its authority. 

We can't call God up on the mobile and invite him for a newsroom interview to question Him.  We can't put Him on trial for allowing nature to do what nature does, when nature does what we don't like.  All we can do is put our trust in Him that He has all this in hand.  We have to trust that there is an answer to the unanswerable and that one day we will understand.  Until that time, I will keep on trusting God that throughout this devastation, His plan is continuing and I hold on to hope of an eternity where Jesus will return to take me to a new place, one more wonderful and beautiful than I can ever begin to imagine.  A world where there will be no more earthquakes, no tsunamis, no war, no famine, no heartbreak and no mourning.

Until that time, while I try to comprehend myself why this has happened and I pray for the people who have lost loved ones, who have lost homes and livelihoods and who now have to face water and food shortages, I will also continue to praise God for his mercy and grace and thank Him that people did survive.  I will praise Him and thank Him that in the midst of all this destruction a lone 60 year old man was found nine miles out to sea floating on his roof, still alive.

God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging. (Psalm 46:1-3)

Friday, 4 March 2011


Meet the new addition to the family.  His name is Toki, he's a Japanese Spitz and he's 8 weeks old.


Thursday, 3 March 2011

Not a caterpillar anymore

I was working late last night and as usual, if I'm working late, I'll ring Andy to see how the kids have done at school, have they got any homework, have they eaten their dinner ............ and for the first time ever last night it was reported back to me there was no broccoli left for my dinner as the kids had eaten it all.

Parents everywhere know that when the green stuff is accepted by the kids, that's a major breakthrough.  A momentus time when you realise as a parent your persistence has finally paid off.

And this trivial little episode has spoken volumes to me.  About how we often look at somebody's character and believe they'll never change.  We don't allow them to grow because we think they're not capable.   Or we look at the person they were a year ago, or five years ago, or ten years ago, and can't quite grasp that, yes, actually, they have changed - or perhaps, we have changed and they were who they were all along and we were the ones at fault. 

People change and at times, the change is so dramatic, we are unable to grasp it or even accept it.  They are who they've always been.  We see people who fail at school, but as adults they run successful businesses, we see people who were once full of hate become the most caring doctors and nurses.  We see corrupt politicians go to jail and become Christians (Jonathan Aitken).  We see drug addicts become counsellors.

If we accept that our children change as they get older, what is so hard about accepting adults who change?

So, my challenge to everyone is to consider people in our lives we have a permanent judgement over.  Who is that person we look at and say, 'Oh him/her, they'll never change.  I've known them for years and I know them better than they know themselves.  I've seen them do this, and I've seen them do that.  I've heard them say this and I've heard them say that.  I know they'll never change.'

My challenge is that we pray for that person and moreso that we pray God powers a change in us towards that person.  My challenge  is that we see them for who they really are and not who we think they are.  Then, do something nice for them.  Even if it is just to say hello next time we see them and not walk by assuming them to be somebody else.  And overall, consider which one of us is the caterpillar now and which one is the butterfly.

Wednesday, 2 March 2011

Big fish, little fish

She's beautiful.

She's graceful.

She's sweet.

She's charming.

She brightens my day.

She warms my heart.

She was born on my birthday.

She's my eldest daughter.

She's my gift.

She's growing up.

She got her placement for secondary school yesterday.