The Summer Snow

Have You Seen The Snow This Summer?

If you haven’t, step outside and look again. There’s a magical event taking place, as rare as snow and just as white. All across England the Clematis vitalba, fondly know to us Brits as ‘Old Mans Beard’ is releasing its seeds into the breeze. It is as if a billion dandelion clocks have exploded in one go, filling the summer air with great gusts of white confetti.

Have you seen it? It’s a party that we are all invited to. It’s wonderful! Piling up in the gutters, floating in the puddles, these delicate treasures carry within their fluffy structures a toolbox with everything needed inside to grow hundreds of towering trees! The more I think about it, the more extravagant it seems! There are countless numbers of these seeds, all over the place, everywhere. There is so much potential hanging in the air right now and there is no way we can comprehend the world changing implications of even one cluster of the ‘old man’s beard’.

Maybe like me you are in a season of transition, floating on the breeze, preparing to land somewhere, maybe soon. You are feeling delicate, a little bit fluffy. Swept up by strong currents into the arena of the big blue sky, the nuggets that you collected, ready in your toolbox, seem to shrink into specks. You feel inadequate, ill-equipped, tiny.

Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes.

James 4 v 14

I felt this way until I was reminded of something that I all too often forget.

Everything we have got
Has been given.
Our seeds, our tools, our treasures,
The very breath in our lungs has been given.
We didn’t call ourselves into existence.
The One whom formed us;

Our spirits, our souls and our bodies,
Whom planned all the days of our lives
Before the world was formed,
The gift giver to whom we can entrust every gift,
Whose breeze will carry us to where we belong,
Whose name will do great and glorious things, in us and through us,

It is a finished plan that is already in motion, which nothing can trip up or stop.

Since you have purified your souls by obedience to the truth so that you have a genuine love for your brothers, love one another deeply, from a pure heart. For you have been born again, not of perishable seed, but of imperishable, through the living and enduring word of God. For,

“All flesh is like grass,

and all its glory like the flowers of the field;

the grass withers and the flowers fall,

but the word of the Lord stands forever.”

1 Peter 1 v 22-24

(Also Romans 8:31-39)

Paint and People

Hello, everyone!

I am almost half way through my course!? It’s about time that I share something with you!

Bare with me, it’s been a rollercoaster. So far I have transitioned away from my Lee Abbey and into the incredible fascinating world of All Nations Christian College. I have been relaying the foundations of my identity in Christ and studying history, reality and The Bible with Messianic Jewish eyes. My parents visited, I exhibited at the Easneye 150TH celebration and shared my testimony. This week our En Route class visited Hindu, Sikh and Muslim communities in South Hall and yesterday I was part of the BA extended arts project review. The creativity and vision here is astounding and many of the people I have met have jobs and calls I didn’t even know could exist!

I want to share with you a little from my heart journey.

On the first day of the first week we were given a challenge; to pick up the first object that came to mind and use it to describe ourselves to the rest of the class. I immediately thought of my paint pallet and in the hasty uncomfortable heat of all eyes on me, I surprised myself with my own voice. In that moment of self realisation I discovered that I was exhausted and close to burn out. All the parts of my life seemed inconsolably disconnected. I felt stuck in a numb state and on autopilot, charging around like a headless chicken with its bottom on fire, disconnected. Have you been there?

Paint pallets don’t make sense, they are so mixed up and messy. We might spend hours and hours examining blobs and puddles but a paint pallet wont make any sense until you see the painting. Only then might one begin to comprehend the complexity, beauty, purpose and precision of each colour.Continue reading “Paint and People”

The Wood Between The Worlds

The past two weeks have been a blur. I left Lee Abbey on the on the 1st of April which feels like a million years ago already. It was the right time for me to leave.

The following couple of weeks have have been the dreamiest mix of resting and catching up with my immediate family. Every year our growing number (13 this year) get together for Easter somewhere along the Cornish south west coast. I find that it is like returning to ‘The Wood Between The Worlds’ as Digory and Pole do in the Magicians Nephew by C. S. Lewis. There are many pools in this wood leading to other worlds. The wood itself is the inbetween space where you do nothing but belong and rest.

“As Digory rose to is feet he noticed that he was neither dripping nor panting for breath as anyone would expect after being under water. His clothes were perfectly dry … The trees grew closer together and were so leafy that he could get no glimpse of the sky. All the light was green light that came through the leaves: but there must have been a very strong sun overhead for this daylight was bright and warm. … The pool he had just got out of was not the only pool. There was dozens of others – a pool every few yards as far as his eyes could see. When he tried to describe it afterwards Digory always said, ” It was a rich place: as rich as a plum cake.”

On Wednesday I leave my leafy wood, take a plunge and move to All Nations Christian College. I shall be studying cross cultural mission for 10 weeks and getting my tool kit ready to go to Kenya in September to live with the Maasai…

Thank you for catching up with my story, thank you for your prayers, encouragements and support.

Abi Joy

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