Monthly Archives: February 2007

This is me…


What obsolete skill are you?


You are ‘Latin’. Even among obsolete skills, the tongue of the ancient Romans is a real anachronism. With its profusion of different cases and conjugations, Latin is more than a language; it is a whole different way of thinking about things.You are very classy, meaning that you value the classics. You value old things, good things which have stood the test of time. You value things which have been proven worthy and valuable, even if no one else these days sees them that way. Your life is touched by a certain ‘pietas’, or piety; perhaps you are even a Stoic. Nonetheless, you have a certain fascination with the grotesque and the profane. Also, the modern world rejects you like a bad transplant. Your problem is that Latin has been obsolete for a long time.
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Reckon this is the most accurate of these thingies so far…

(Thanks to Auntie Doris for this quiz)

Just this, then I log off.

Okay, some brief stuff, and then I need to look to my books.

Am now off work for another two weeks, having been signed off for a fortnight already. Not good, seeing as I only started with the company in December. Not sure where this is all going to end up. There is so much in my brain that the best thing, really, is not to think about it.

Due back at work on March 6th. Please pray for my peace of mind about this and that the outcome will be for the best.

Thanks.

Sabbathy stuff

Sad Sis – yes. As I said, it is surely a luxury for me to be able to do as I do. I think how we choose to observe the sabbath is very indiviual and doubtless incredibly tricky for those with young families.

JtL – thanks, fishy! I am actaully doing a theology-type-thing because, initially, it was a way to live in Vancouver for a year. Having travelled and volunteered in Cananda for a few months, I fell in love with this beautiful city. I therefore applied for a one year course at Regent College and was accepted. The arrival of T&E and Mum’s illness postponed this and, eventually, it became apparant that distance learning would be the best approach. The course is designed to run in parallel to your vocation and add a kind of Christian focus to your work life, it also has no time limit. Thankfully, some of the units still need to be taken in residence, so I will be spending time in Vavcouver again some time in the future. Hurrah!

Having neatly side stepped your real question of ‘why study theology?’, I’ll prove that I do not have political aspirations by providing you with a proper answer. I’ll admit that the subject itself held very little appeal for me…initially. I would never have considered academic study of my faith if it had not held the promise of living abroad. Having said that, now that I am doing so, I am surprised at how interesting I find it. My current study of the OT is adding substance and background to my beliefs and prompting quesitions such as the sabbath one. It is also good to stretch the old grey matter to prevent it dying off completely through lack of use!

Sabbath

As you may know, I am currently doing a Diploma in Christian Studies with Regent College, Vancouver (distance learning, obv! For full story of why, just ask;) One of the requirements of this is to take part in online discussions with fellow students. A thread I have been posting on has concerned whether one observes the Sabbath as a modern Christian and, if so, how.

One of the immediate barriers to Sabbath observation for many of us is that we attend church on a Sunday (which is generally recognised as being the Sabbath in the western Christian tradition). So, whilst many people are using this day as an opportunity for a long lie-in, the more conscientious of us are dragging ourseves to church. Can anybody fail to see the irony of the fact that Christians, as a group, will be getting up earlier on their ‘day of rest’ than the majority of the remainder of the population? Add to that the fact that many of us do some form of service on a Sunday whilst at church (surely ‘work’ then?) and it gets even more confusing. As for the full time paid minitsers, well, what more need I say?

That’s only the first barirer. How about the fact that the employment of many people (emergency services etc) requires work on a Sunday? Also, consider the general cultural trend towards Sunday being no different to the rest of the week.

However, do we dig our heels in and do nothing on the Sabbath, refusing to buy a Sunday paper on principle? Personally, I think that is a little extreme, but I am aware that it is a view held by some.

As a form of solution, I seek to take a day out each week where I do no work. For the reasons stated above this cannot be a Sunday, so my day of choice is Tuesday. It is a day off from paid employment, which is a good start. So, what do I do instead of working? Stay in bed all day? Read the Bible all day? Pray all day? What counts as ‘work’ anyway? Do I even wash the dishes that day?*

Since I began this ‘experiment’, it has panned out this way:-
– Slow start, leisurely breakfast, ensuring that I begin the day with prayer and bible reading (generally brief)
– Go for a walk – slowly! The purpose of this is to communicate with the Lord via nature (yeah, sounds like weird hippy stuff!) Seriously, tho, I really do get a sense of being close to God when strolling down country lanes. Lunch sometime around now.
– Come home, concentrated prayer and Bible time.
– Sometimes (oh, the shame) watch God-telly. Have surprisinly found some of the lecture/sermon bits helpful.
– May visit friend at some point in day for food and fellowship(!)
(Day interspersed with much fussing of cats. V restful!)

So, is that what God intended?

The balance I endeavour to strike is between legalism and self-gratification. My initial stance when beginning the online discussion was a reaction to the over-zealous (imho) ‘keep Sunday special’ ideal which, to my mind, was overly prescriptive and reeked of a starchy, legalistic, Sunday-best mentality. However, I began to think that my leaning towards a relaxing and fun Sabbath paid to little heed of the idea of self-denial and recognition of the holiness and ‘other-ness’ of God.

Another stumbling-block for many of us is that fact that life is just so busy. The fact that I can carve out sacred time, if it try, is surely a luxury. I’m guessing that work, family, church and other commitments would render this well nigh impossible for many. So, what is the answer?

I have become more convinced than ever that keeping the Sabbath is vital to our health – physical, mental and spiritual. I think it is pretty important for the planet we live on too. Life, I think, has become far too fast paced for the way we have been made. There is no doubt that God ordained a day of rest for the benefit of his creatures and his creation. Surely, then, the question of whether we observe it is answered with a resounding yes.

All that remains is to work out how we can do this in our present time and culture.

Bet you wish I’d stuck to asking whether you preferred tea to coffee?

*For the record, the washing up does get done on my Tuesday of rest.

D’you fancy a cuppa…?

Random curiosity post…

The other day, for some reason, T&E asked me if we had any coffee. I replied that we did, which prompted him to ask where it was. I told him it was in the cupboard and he found it, eventually.

The reason I tell you this is because, in our house, there are three containers by the kettle. In the one marked tea, there are teabags, in the one marked sugar, there is sugar, and in the one marked coffee, there are sachets of hot chocolate.

Odd? Not really. We tend not to drink coffee, and nor do we have that many guests who do.

So, tell me, tea or coffee?

Btw, I once visited a friend’s parents when I was a student. On arrival, they offered me a drink. I said yes, expecting the usual ‘tea or coffee’ option. I was most surpised when the beverage on offer was of the port/sherry/whisky variety. I guess I had led a sheltered life ’til then…

Not entirely true…


You Are Grass Green


Down to earth and a bit of a hippie, you are very into nature and the outdoors.
You accept the world and people as they are. You don’t try to change things.
You are also very comfortable with yourself, flaws and all.
Optimistic about the future, you feel like life is always getting better.

…but certainly something to aspire to!

For rain…

…and others who have come here expecting a DIY story, as promised by T & E.

Husband was very efficient recently and now there are coat hooks and the like affixed to our walls. He likes to do the DIY thing with the whole power tool bit, being a ‘real man’ (he says!).

So, after drilling a couple of holes and inserting the relevant wall plugs, with me as attending tool holder, he began to screw a coat rack to the wall with an electric screwdriver.

‘Whirrrrrrr!’ went the power tool and the screw turned rapidly, fixing one side of the rack to the wall, with the screw head left protruding slightly for convenience. The procedure was repeated for second screw. Then followed the attempt at the requisite final tightening of the screws.

‘Nyahhh’ said the screwdriver as it ran out of charge. Seriously, it really did sound as though the power tool was mocking Husband. Translation of Nyahhh = “You’ll have to finish this job manually, ya lazy git. I quit!” So, due to the relacitrant nature of the sarcastic tool, that is exactly what he did (And very well too, I may add!)*

Dr. Who fans will be aware of the Time Lord’s all-singing all-dancing gadget, known as a Sonic Screwdirver.

We must be the only people in existence who possess its evil counterpart…

…the Sardonic Screwdriver.

(For those who know me, that pun was actually lit upon entirely by accident. I think that may qualify it as actually being funny!)

*Earning ‘Good wife points’ there.

Hmmm….

Got sent home from work today. Not well enough to do the job, at least for the moment…maybe longer.

This illness is something that I would like to relegate firmly to the past. Having had around three major recurring episodes over the last 18 years or so, I am beginning to think that this is not really going to happen. This is hard to take, especially as it has been about 8 years since I last had real problems. I even came off a particular form of most hated meds about this time last year. It felt like a milestone at the time, now it just seems like a false dawn. Sigh.

Sometimes the ‘I will beat this’ attitude only goes so far. There comes a point, in some situations, where one needs to face the fact that the problem in question may never fully go away. It may recede and recur and, life being a naturally cyclical thing, there may be nothing one can do to change this. It is a question of adjusting and endeavouring to ensure that the downturns of the cycle do not become disasterous. Still, it is very humbling, and incredibly galling, to think that this particular Achilles Heel may be with me for life.

Still, I bought a bike off e-bay the other day, so not all cycles are bad 😉