adolescent angst

in your house I am different

in your house I am chained

in your house I have no freedom

in your house I feel dead.


out there is freedom

out there is love

out there is life, real living life

out there I will go


but for now don’t ask me

how I am? Life sucks

what I am doing? I’m existing

where I am going? till I’m gone, let me go

Revisiting Moonbows

It is easy in this world to become blasé about signs, visions and conversations with God, because people are telling us it is happening all around us. Some people are having entire paragraphs or directives from the Lord, others get a single word.

And more get nothing, they don’t hear an audible voice.

Some people have divine dreams and visions and are able to make sense of their purpose, some write books on their visions, some don’t.

And more get nothing, they don’t dream of divine things and they don’t have visions.

Some people after talking with the Lord will see a rainbow in the sky or a bird will come to them or some other part of creation makes itself known. Some write books about it, others write blogposts, others don’t.

And more get nothing, they see nothing in creation that is giving them a sign.

How does God speak to you?

Through nature? Through dreams & visions? Through an audible voice? A combination of them all? Or nothing?

I was walking in the woods with a friend the other week and they were wondering what God wanted them to do next and wondering why another friend was told expressly their next move and why they weren’t.

There was a guy in Scotland (I am sure he is famous but my memory does not serve me well in this instance) who was praying as he walked home during the night across a dangerous path, he suddenly got the urge to go a different direction. The next morning he got back to the spot and realised he had been stopped from plunging into a quarry. He took this as a sign to move in  particular direction.

I was literally silenced earlier this year, having a bout of laryngitis that made it hard to speak and impossible to sing. My voice moved from a barely audible whisper to fishwife via big gruff man through a squeaky cartoon voice and bake to the whisper. So I stopped talking where possible and stopped singing altogether. I am not sure my singing voice will ever come back but it doesn’t stop me dancing.

However He wants to use me, I will do it.

Which brings me back to moonbows.

I didn’t know moonbows existed when I experienced one. It took some googling and FBing to find what I saw. I have blogged a few times about the experience and last night I looked at it with fresh eyes. I was talking to a friend who may or may not be leaving my community and we were talking about God’s provision both in terms of signs and wonders but also in practical matters. It was really good to connect with someone who was in a situation of shifting sand, as I am but who was holding strong to her anchor, as I am.

Driving from her home it was raining heavily with lots of weird traffic, lots to concentrate on, but I just kept remembering the moonbow. So much of my life has changed since that moment. As I plunge into deeper water later this week, diving in by faith alone, I realised I didn’t need a moonbow anymore, or a rainbow, or an audible voice. God moves in me so subtly it is almost imperceptible manner.

Yesterday in the morning service I handed out the reading, I didn’t know why I did it that way, I have never done it before. And I didn’t know what it was to achieve, but I did it because of the compulsion within. At the end of the service as circled words and phrases were read out, I realised why and spoke about it and amazingly watched physical “A-ha” moments filter over the congregation. The looks were great to see, it tied the whole service up so they could take it home and unwrap it – if they dared.

A friend commented on an event from last year which I had forgotten but I was then in the company of the other person and asked them did they remember. We both concurred that so much “weird” had happened since then that it seemed much, much longer than a year. It is the “weird” stuff, I think, where God is speaking. The Godincidences, the conversations & the physical interactions are all part of it.

We still pretty much live in the times of “if a man stands up on a bus and says he is god, we commit him.” Talking of signs, wonders, audible voices are not in mainstream society and when they are mentioned, people scoff, laugh, pass it off as something else.

Moon bows are special, they don’t occur very often, a special set of circumstances has to take place. They can not be recreated with glass beads and strong light. I don’t need to see another to know I am on the right path. I am in full, thankful and grateful that I was given one. God took one broken human and made me new, beautiful on the inside, fit for His purpose.

A retired clergy told me a few months ago: it is obvious to all, but I needed it to be obvious to me. I think clarity is coming, the fog is lifting to a fine mist. I am remembering the moonbow and moving forward with the word given to me recently by a godly man: Noble.

How do I grow to fit into the shoes of “Noble?”

Time will tell.


Streams of Sanctuary

The man screamed with all that was within, “sanctuary,” but it came out as a barely audible whisper. He was spent.

Minutes earlier he had hauled his broken frame on to the rocks.

Hours earlier he, alongside his fellow passengers had jumped into the sea as the boat capsized; deliberately scuttled with eight hundred people on board.

Days earlier he was running; running to freedom, running from persecution.

Weeks earlier he had opened the door of his busy surgery, just one more day of treating the usual ailments in the middle-class suburb of Aleppo.

The rocks were like the most comfortable mattress he had ever slept on, better than the Sheraton in Dubai at the last conference he attended. He lay, fighting sleep; a losing battle.

Later, awakening with a little strength restored, he tried to stand but the twisted, knarled left leg refused. He had walked with it, ran with it and swam with it but it had needed treatment days ago. It was broken in at least three places where boots of the terrorists had hit. He was only trying to help, to be a good neighbour, he didn’t ask the religion of his patients and they sat together in the waiting room. But gossip spreads and one person let out they had seen a bible in the surgery and the men came.

Khalid shuffled his body along the rocks aiming for the tufts of dune he thought he could see. His eyes were still slits from days of intense heat, from the beating he was concerned something was detached. He tried to think of them as ‘the terrorists’ because to bring their names into his mind caused bile to rise in his stomach. But he knew them, he knew their fathers well, he played chess with them in the cool evenings whilst sipping mint tea; he knew them well.

Slowly, the determination that had brought him this far brought him to the edge of the reeds and grass, a small stream gushed its way to the sea and he laughed: Streams of Sanctuary.

He drank water from the stream steadily until he was sure his kidneys were working and worked with the reeds and grasses to construct makeshift splints for his leg. He knew if he got as far as trees in the distance he could make a stick that would enable him to walk to the nearest village or town. As he drank from the stream he thought of the living water, how a girl had rushed into his surgery one morning to explain to him  about living water.

Ten years ago he had read of a man in Haiti who had travelled for three weeks with a broken hip, shuffling most of the way. Khalid remembered how in awe he was of this man’s courage. He now understood, it wasn’t courage, it was being more scared of the alternative, it was not choosing heroism; it was choosing life.

B’nyaroi, the girl with the bible, she had died along with her whole family. The men had barricaded their home and set it ablaze. The crowd cheered as the screams stopped. Horrific, Khalid thought. She had been teaching him about Jesus, she had such joy in her eyes and her face shone in a way he had never seen. He listened to her as she excitedly told him about life with this Saviour who was God and man. He said little but the leaflet with ‘the prayer’ had been read and spoken out loud. When he thought of B’nyaroi he thought of peace, love and acceptance.

Minutes later he was moving, a little faster now he hopped some and crawled some.

Hours later he arrived into the village of Velanidia and knocked at the first door.

Days later he was walking on crutches in the gardens of Molaoi Lakonia General Hospital. He had lost half his left leg, but his eyes were much improved. He would never have full sight again but he had enough to see the beautiful anemones and orchids. He was walking in God’s garden.

Weeks later still nursing wounds both physical and emotional he stood on a stage in Athens. He spoke the fluent English, his father had insisted he learn, he told of terror and redemption, he told of hospitality and he wept as he told B’nyaroi’s story.

Months later he enrolled in a theological college somewhere in the world. He know called himself Khalid the Living, he wanted to reach out to his nation, to his former community, he wanted to spread the gospel message of love into the hearts of Bassel and Yaman and all the other young people caught up in the blood battle. His eyes, precious to him now, watered freely when he thought of how much love he had for those young boys, for the men who torched B’nyaroi and her family. How much love the Father has for him and everyone else. He was living, Khalid the Living.

Years later Khalid … (yet to happen)