Friday, August 28, 2009

do you know him?

I read this in one of the left behind books as I was ploughing through the series and it really captured me:

"The bible says my king is a seven- way king . He’s the king of the Jews; that’s a racial king. He’s the king of Israel; that’s a national king. He’s the king of righteousness. He’s the king of the ages. He’s the king of heaven. He’s the king of glory. He’s the king of kings. Besides being a seven way king, He’s the Lord of lords. That’s my king. Well, I wonder, do you know him?
My king is a sovereign king. No means of measure can define His limitless love. No far-seeing telescope can bring into visibility the coastline of His shoreless supply. No barrier can hinder Him from pouring out His blessings. He’s enduringly strong. He’s entirely sincere. He’s eternally steadfast. He’s immortally graceful. He’s infinitely powerful. He’s impartially merciful. Do you know Him?
He’s the greatest phenomenon that has ever crossed the horizons of this world. He’s God’s son. He’s the sinner’s saviour. He’s the centrepiece of civilization. He stands in the solitude of Himself. He’s honest and He’s unique. He’s unparrallelled. He’s unprecedented. He’s the loftiest idea in literature. He’s the highest personality in philosophy. He is the supreme problem in higher criticism. He’s the fundamental doctrine of true theology. He’s the core, the necessity for spiritual religion. He’s the miracle of the ages. Yes, He is. He is the superlative of everything good you call Him. He’s the only one qualified to be our all- sufficiency. I wonder if you know Him today.
He supplies strength for the weak. He’s available for the tempted and tried. He sympathizes and He saves. He strengthens and sustains. He guards and He guides. He heals the sick. He cleanses the leper. He forgives the sinner. He discharges debtors. He delivers the captive. He defends the feeble. He blesses the young. He serves the unfortunate. He regards the aged. He rewards the diligent. And He beautifies the meek. I wonder if you know Him.
Well, this is my king. He’s the key to knowledge. He’s the wellspring of wisdom. He’s the doorway of deliverance. He’s the pathway of peace. He’s the roadway of righteousness. He’s the highway of holiness. He’s the gateway of glory. Do you know him?
Well, His office is manifold. His promise is sure. His life is matchless. His goodness is limitless. His mercy is everlasting. His love never changes. His word is enough. His grace is sufficient. His reign is righteous. His yoke is easy and His burden is light. I wish I could describe Him to you.
He’s indescribable. He’s incomprehensible. He’s invincible. He’s irresistable. Well, you can’t get Him out of your mind. You can’t get Him off of your hand. You can’t outlive Him and you can’t live without Him. The Pharisees couldn’t stand Him but they found they couldn’t stop Him. Pilate couldn’t find any fault in Him. Herod couldn’t kill Him. Death couldn’t handle Him and the ground couldn’t hold Him. That’s my king. I wonder, do you know Him?"

Thursday, August 27, 2009

the showers are not intended for self indulgence

Every year I find myself back in the same place; the same old smell of cowpat, the same old unceasing grey cloud ceiling and the same old paper thin toilet roll. After last year's experience of 3 weeks in my little messy tent without a single glint of sunshine, I vowed never to return. But then I found myself, last week, driving down the M4 en route to Momentum. I figured it would probably rain the whole time just on account of the fact I took suncream but on the other hand, I did lug my wellies all the way from Sheffield, which pretty much promises some sunshine. So a couple of days in, I'm used to the cowpat smell, a little bit of blue has penetrated the grey and there seems to be a good supply of the usually elusive bog roll and I've almost forgotten why I had previously vowed never to return.
Now, on a scale of 1 to insanely high maintenance, I probably fall somewhere towards the latter. Sometime between the past years spent at guide camp to the now of living constantly in debt due to refusal to buy shampoo under £5, I've lost my ability to rough it true style. I won't beat around the bush here in my admittance that me and Jade's first year at New Wine together included a total of 0 showers. I don't know whether explaining that we were 13 makes that any better or worse. Anyway, nowadays I can't actually converse with anyone until I've showered and applied copious amounts of makeup to cover the tragic camping skin which occurs due to the 3 girls to 1 sink ratio each morning resulting in the lack of the cleanse, tone and moisturise routine.
So each morning at Momentum I took a gung ho run to the showers to begin the painful process of becoming presentable.
Now, this is where, having made it through the cowpat, rain and loo roll situations, my idealistic view of camping got shattered this year. 40 minutes I queued for a shower. 40 whole minutes that could have been put to the better use of something holy- or just make up application. At New Wine, it can be hours before you get to the front of the shower queue thanks to all the mums who take their 5 children in with them and although the children sound like they're having a whale of the time splashing around, it's not so fun for the poor souls standing outside in pajamas waiting for them to finish using up all the hot water.
At Momentum however, the shower queue gets held up for other reasons. As I am standing waiting, having brushed my hair until every last knot has gone, and having made awkward shower queue conversation with the other people in line, a smell wafts past my nose... the smell of hair removal cream. What sort of person takes the liberty of using hair removal cream in the shower with a queue of 6 increasingly late-for-the-meeting people awaiting their turn?! It makes me wonder what other liberties people are taking in these showers that being 3rd in line for one can result in a 40 minute wait.
I, however, the thoughtful and loving person that I am, was in and out of the shower within 5 minutes every day. Although that may have slightly more to do with the shower consisting of a lukewarm trickle of water rather than my selfless character.
I was then lucky enough to get a second shower on the way back to my tent, as the never ceasing grey cloud resumed its position and took some liberties of its own.
And I thought, having survived a year in Tapton, I could have survived a slum but obviously there's some lesson to be learnt which God keeps calling me back to the humble Bath and West Shwoground in order to learn.

Monday, August 03, 2009

how it feels to feel like a yoyo

I'm in a chatty mood so to save myself from filling out endless ridiculous facebook quizzes which noone reads anyway and can come across as insanely pretentious, I thought I'd revert to the humble old blog and waffle away about nothing for a while until I'm so tired I just go to bed.

I have been an absolute yoyo over the past couple of months or at least that's how it's felt. As anyone feels in those months leading up to uni, where I was exactly a year ago, the future is just one big unknown and there's this feeling of novelty that comes with every day which had previously been lost in the mundanity of sixth form and home life. Anyway, my point being that this long, free summer is one of those novelties that I'm still trying to get the hang of and I've been trying to juggle my various commitments all the while finding myself bored with nothing to do on a frequent basis. The yoyo part, however, is purely in the geographical sense. After being turfed out of the security of halls, myself and all my stuff, arrived back in Maidenhead barely before I'd had the chance to open my post, I was back in Sheffield for a week to sort out my job application and to move into my new house. Once all moved in, the lack of internet, money and kitchen utensils, not to mention no imminent start of my job, drove me home again where all these things suddenly appear at my disposal (much to my shame).

Before I really had the opportunity to indulge myself in the above mentioned, I was carted up north once again, to the west this time, to witness my sister becoming a doctor, once and for all, with another ceremony which included a lot of clapping made slightly more fun by clapping extra loudly for random unsuspecting individuals. I met my sister's boyfriend, who missed dinner and arrived (after a lot of nagging) in time for pudding due to the fact he ran over a cat en route and had to take it to the RSPCA. Which would've come across as a very caring and loving act if only my entire family actually cared to any degree for animals, which once again to my shame, we don't. I was incredibly jealous of my sister's beautiful house which I appreciate all the more after having a taste for home decorating by decking my own little room out with pink furnishing. My jealousy was impinged slightly by the fact her toilet door doesn't lock and there is a gap down the middle, just in the right place to give a full viewing to anyone walking past. Which I did not appreciate when sharing the house with 6 others.

Anyway, after these two days I was once again homeward bound for a week before going up to Lancaster for my other sister's graduation. However, due to the fact my parents hadn't told my sister I was coming, she was off on the razzle and didn't want me to stay with her. The other option was to room share with a certain someone else, which I won't divulge any names or details about my reluctance. So, my parents dropped me off at Liverpool so I could stay in Claire's lovely house while mum, dad and granny continued their voyage to Lancaster which me and Claire travelled to by train the next morning. Another graduation ceremony, another family meal and a night in my sister's grotty student house later and I was headed back once again to Maidenhead.

Nothing particularly exciting occurred in Maidenhead except frantic packing on my behalf which resulted in me leaving many boxes of random tat that I've acquired in 1st year of uni in my old bedroom. And I was all set to go back to Sheffield. Then I got a phone call from Nicki. An impromptu trip down to Dorset with some of the original 12. Torn between sticking to my comfortable plan and swanning off to freedom in Sheffield, and jumping in on the spontanaeity and roadtripping down to Dorset, I decided to do the latter mainly on my mum's recommendation who I think just wasn't ready to see me and all my stuff disappear until some indefinite future time. Anyway the details of Dorset are much as you would expect, a lot of wrong turnings down country lanes, drinking games and junk food not to mention an overwhelming amount of catching up on each other's first year experiences which were all as average as the middle class teens we were before we went.

So after Dorset, back to Maidenhead before driving back up to Sheffield, accompanied by my entire life's belongings (minus all the crap I deemed unneeded for 2nd year and left at home). I moved into my room officially, made it so pink and girly it could belong to an 8 year old (it'd probably pass as adult acceptable minus the forever friends bed covers), stocked up on all those absent kitchen utensils and handtowels for the bathroom and the like and have settled into Sheffield living, seeing friends here and there and being trained up for my job.

But obviously, this state of, er, settled-ness, is shortlived as I once again venture out for a kid's camp for which I have to get the train to Leeds and then down to Birmingham then a bus to the middle of nowhere, with a bunch of children in tow I might add, not to mention luggage consisting of mainly paint, cardboard and children's books.

Then it's back to Sheffield before going to Somerset for Momentum and then back to Sheffield before Maidenhead again on the 3rd September.

So, just to summarise, the past two months has been: Sheffield to Maidenhead to Sheffield to
Maidenhead to Liverpool to Maidenhead to Liverpool to Lancaster to Maidenhead to Dorset to Maidenhead to Sheffield and still to come- Sheffield to Leeds to Birmingham to middle of nowhere to Birmingham to Leeds to Sheffield to Maidenhead to Somerset to Sheffield to Maidenhead.

Might I add, I hate travelling.