Wednesday, December 3, 2014

Beautiful People ♥

I remember once I tried to do my own iced coffee drink... I put the milk, ice and coffee in the blender and pressed on and for a reason I still ignore it started to form a foam. I was very happy at first but then the size started to double the triple so fast that I was just struck stupid not knowing what to do... then I saw my beloved mum coming to the kitchen and oh my! I have to fix this! what do I do now! I tried to removed the blender upper part from the electrical part and oh dear! it separated without taking the bottom with it... FLOOD!

Today my brain is like that.

It is a sort of  blender where you throw in cups of watercolours and press on... It feels like you have one thought and then another and then another and they all seem to connect yet not to connect and sometimes it is on speed five and you feel it is all fluffing in and you cannot contain it anymore... Like if you shake a soda drink and then open it? (I would have said champagne but I remembered that I am still an employee!)

BUT! I won't flood here, there is only one thing I really want to say! 

I woke up very very happy. Not unusually so. I love mornings. But I woke up with the remaining of a ruminating idea that God is so good. That people are so beautiful. I was driving work and miraculously all car drivers around me seemed so lovely. 
I started to shout: Hello Mr. Handsome, Hey Pretty lady... Okay maybe I did not go that far but my heart was overwhelmed. 
I started to remember people. Name by name, person by person and with each one of them I felt like a shower of joy was getting all over me... I prayed for each one of them. I prayed for people I knew and I prayed for people I just knew about and I tried to name them all so most probably you got a drop out of my brain-blender today ♥. 
People are so beautiful. I know I am repeating but really they are. And I thought! I need to invent another word, something special for them, something to describe my feeling towards them... And I started to feel a pressure! Am I using the word beautiful too often that it lost its meaning... and I remembered once C.S. Lewis said that we should not use superlative without thinking much because when a superlative comes what will use for it if we abused of it before... Panic attack! This thought revolted me! It is so true but Oh Lewis! Have you met the people I know?! They are always a superlative! What can I do?! Then!! Revelation!! I remembered another of his saying "there are no ordinary people!" Yes! "Next to the Blessed Sacrament itself, your neighbour is the holiest object presented to your senses." Yes!
And I felt so! very much so! and I thought there is no superlative abused when talking about holy! I will not refrain form complimenting people because they truly deserve it! I will not put a limit to how much I will regard them as wonderful because they truly are! And when someone will do something to prove it all wrong I will remind myself that the essence does not change, search and look for the heart!

You are beautiful my reader and I love you ♥

Friday, November 28, 2014

Thyme Leaf


In a slow motion, with interruptions, in a fast track, with overflows, his thoughts danced. “Should I go back? Should I stay? Should I move on? Should I sleep? Should I solve it? Should I search? Have I found it? Kyrieleison, Kyrieleison Lord have mercy on me, Lord help me!” Then with a sudden movement he hushed this creature called brain, stood and gazing at nothing in particular he declared! “I know it!” And with excitement Samuel ran to his professor to announce the news!
“I found it! I shall be a thyme leaf Sir!” He announced opening the door of the office a brisk way!
The professor who usually likes his quiet naps quite much was disturbed, but this time not for being awaken form a peaceful siesta but he was pretty sure he heard his student accurately. Wishing he made a mistake he inquired “Sam, son, a what? I asked you what would you be if you had all chances before you… “
“Yes yes, I know” He hastily replied, he was looking for the answer for over three weeks and he felt a storm in his stomach… Samuel had a personal relationship with his body; he felt it all in his organs so lively! He was afraid he would be sent to think again! He was not particularly fond of thinking, especially about existentialist questions!
“And did you answer me a thyme leaf boy?” The voice of the professor was calmer but you could feel the disapproval in his tone. 
“Umm… yeah… A thyme leaf.” Samuel answered hesitating. His professor was kind but he wanted to impress him so much that he could not take a risk to have a wrong answer for a matter of such importance… a matter of life and future!!
The professor knew his pupil was not like all the others but he thought that it’s maybe genius… but now doubts started to creep in… “He might be crazy, he probably is” He thought… “Hilarious Sam… Have a seat, and please explain to my poor wits this choice of yours” He said pointing to a chair facing his wonderful wooden desk.
Samuel moved slowly hoping to find in the few saved seconds some courage. He knew why he wanted to be a thyme leaf but will he be able to put it in a clear and understandable language? Samuel was not a typical person… He could write pages and argue for days about why birds love worms but when asked about personal choices, he’d lose all ability as if he was an alien. 
“I, I, I… I am thirsty Sir please, can I get a cup of water?” his face was red and yellow and green and soon enough rainbow. 
“Hurry up, go on. I know you’re not thirsty, but go on, gather your guts and come back.” This time the professor spoke with gentleness, sensing the tension in his student. “Bring me a cup too with you, would you please” he added trying to normalize the situation.
Samuel started to mumble as he was going to get the cups “Will I be able to explain? What if I fail? He did not specify… My, oh me! Oh me why do you always understand things upside down, why do you always have to put I in a difficult condition.” He sighed.
He thought of changing his answer, but it was too clear for him why he made his choice and so with determination and a sprinkle of courage gulped from the fresh water he entered the office again. 
The office has a soul of its own. It imposed a posture of awe and reverence. You feel such a speck in it. Perhaps it is because of how it is built: red velvet carpets, beautifully carved wooden shelves, porcelain ornaments, a chimney, a sword on the wall… in short a very Victorian like library. But perhaps as well it is because you feel in it the presence of all who were before and how their thoughts roam in the air you breathe. And perhaps for a moment you get the chance to meet them, at least this is what Samuel was hoping, to be able to meet Nostradamus and ask him to predict how these coming hours will pass! 
“Sir, are you there?” Samuel scanned the room and found no one around. “ha! I am safe! I gave my answer, was ready to explain but now he missed his chance, I am out of here!” He thought! 
Just as he was turning to leave he hears the voice of his professor emerging from under the desk. “Come in, come in, I am here just fixing my chair, have a seat please”. 
Samuel sat down, blushing and looking from the corner of his eyes muttering. “Sir, you know I can explain.”
“haha! I have no doubts Sam, proceed” He said in a more of an amused tone than a sarcastic on, but Samuel did not see it that way. 
“Do not laugh at me Sir” uttered the little boy with the strength of mind that he will not let his superior have fun of him because of his choice! Regaining posture he continued. “A thyme leaf sir is very noble. Thyme does not accept to pass without being noticed, you will smell in the woods, you will spot it on the teeth, you will taste in your pizza. Thyme just does not pass unnoticed! But thyme as you might as well know sir, is pretty small and would not really mind being tread upon, thyme does not take offence being treated as less than fancy, as extremely common but then again Sir, no one would call a thyme common… it’s just not … common! Thyme is discreet too Sir, something in its nature is just too peaceful to make any additional noise and no that does not contradict the fact that it does not pass unnoticed… the sun is discreet, prof, but can you just miss it when it’s shining up there?” He paused to see the reaction of his professor who by now was taken by this answer. He did not see it coming. “Wow” He thought… “This boy has more brains than one would imagine.”
“I am impressed Sam dear” He finally concluded “You sure have grasped the essence of this life. Funny how sometimes we get so conditioned that we miss the joy of just being. Thank you my son, thank you, you’ve refreshed my soul… I thought you lost your mind, some sort of illness that comes with intelligence, but you’re not there yet, not yet.” He giggled a bit and stood up and walked towards the window.
“Thank you, Sir” replied Sam grateful that he got this nice praise from his master but more grateful that the interrogation was done and that he can now go back to his little garden! He has wanted to plant this basil since his friend gave it to him two days ago! 

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Introducing Something New - Bells

I love short stories! I love long stories! I just simply love stories! 
And I love telling stories!! But since it is hard to gather people around me to tell a story (even though it is a little dream of mine, to be a great orator and all...), I thought of writing them for people but with some participation for it is an essential part of storytelling the input of the audience!! 
It is sort of a little game. I love games too by the way. The person gives me ten random words and I write a story for them containing those words. 
I usually do not  publish them on the blog (obviously) but yesterday I finished one and I was encouraged to share it here and I thought yeah why not!
So I am introducing a new label, my very first label, "Short Story". Here I will post the stories I write and I hope you will enjoy reading them as much as I do writing them! (Please note that I am not a professional writer and typo is my best literary device...)
I will put the list of words I received in the beginning and you can try to strike them out as you find them in the text (a little bonus game for you). You can participate as well by sending me your own list of words if you wish to have your own story! 

So long story short (I found this idiom funny in this context!), here it is my first entry under this awesome category! Enjoy!


 “Victor!” She ran to open the door and exclaimed as she saw him,” I have an idea! and you’ve got to agree pretty please!!”
“Okay, okay…  I’ll hear it all gladly but first let’s have our tea” he replies taking his coat off then he adds solemnly “You know, I am glad I was not born before tea!”
“You’re right! I am glad too! “She agrees, running to bring the tray she already set.
Pouring a few drops of milk in his cup he declares,” So! What are you so excited about”.
She was a hearty woman. She was always excited about something.  She had in her a spirit that left everyone almost jealous. She had an air of happiness that seemed to be anchored somewhere beyond this palpable reality. She was a mystery and he loved this about her. He loved her.
“Well… Victor… have you ever thought about the meaning of life?” she replies rather peacefully for tea has this effect on her.
They did not miss tea time. It was more than just the drink and the biscuits. It was a time of transformation. A time where all their universes melt together, a time of sharing and those who share with you a meal, share with you their life for in bread and water lay the symbols of life, of the Life.
“Ummm… No, not really… uhhh… Was this you discovery for today?” he replied rather perplexed not because he did not like to engage in philosophical debated with but he didn’t expect this to be her answer after her enthusiastic welcome.
“Yes and no, ” she said swallowing a big gulp “I want to propose something… can I?“
“Sure you can, but I thought, well… never mind… yes, what is it that you want?” he spoke with a gentle voice for he guessed that she was rather hesitant. She often doubted herself and her ideas because people often found her atypical and he did not want to add to this. He wanted her free.
“Victor! I’d be greatly obliged if you would tell me what I have done - always part from feeding the pigs, raising some very decent carrots and walking the donkey …” she mutters quickly
“But I thought you loved it my dear… I thought you wanted the simple farmer’s life… I thought you were happy… Are you having trouble… do you want to get someone to help you during the day?” He said that and went up to hug her…
“I am! I am happy and I am not complaining… I am asking you because I was thinking about the meaning of all this life… and I think I found it…” Then she declares promptly “Bells are an underappreciated instrument.” and stops.
“Oh?” he looks at her now more confused than ever.
“Yeah they are rather charming,” she gets up and shows him to the ceiling “and I think we need to hang one here… a big on victor, like the Church bell…” she states passionately as if some hot blood got in her again.
“You want to hang a church bell in our living room? And what does it have to do with the meaning of this life my dearest” his voice was barely audible for he was trying to contain his tears. He felt guilty for leaving her alone all day to go to work in town. He thought he made things catastrophic by choosing to move this rather primitive place… He   wished they could just be together all day but he has to work!
“Yes, yeah, I want to hang a big beautiful metal bell in our living room…” She holds his hands kisses then and continues “imagine for a second… it’s fascinating… don’t you think so?”
“I am not sure I am following beloved… maybe I am sleepy, maybe I am dizzy but really what is it all about?”
“Victor, oh my lovely Victor! I have hurt haven’t I? Oh how silly of me! I should have explained before I suggested all this…” She mutters in his ears trying to comfort him.
He hugs her tightly and tell her, “I was only sad because I thought this life we chose made you unhappy…”
“No, no, not one second! I am too happy Victor! And today I discovered that not only are all our afflictions momentary. But all of it is totally meaningful. Every millisecond of our pain every millisecond of our misery in the path of obedience is producing a peculiar glory we will get because of that. I have been raising the chicken and milking the cow but all this is worthy of my time and diligent application… I am doing what was required of me. I have obeyed and waited. It will often happen like that. As one of the modern authors has told us, the altar must often be built in one place in order that the fire from heaven might descend somewhere else.”
“Wow… you have pierced my heart…” then he giggles, “heh, you always creep me and I think, Oh the tragedy, only to discover that you have something else hiding there… phew! My heart is becoming weak my love heh…” he was saying that very relieved. Then as if something hit him he exclaims, “But what about the bell?!”
“The bell! Yes! Can’t you see? In bells lay the meaning of life…” she stops to give him time to grasp
“Oh? And how so?” he said with a curious tone for he knows she will astonish him.
“You see how they take every hit, the painful hit, and transform it to a beautiful vibration? You see how they handle there waiting peacefully for their time to be used and sometimes from Christmas to Christmas or from Sunday to Sunday but they wait happily for their call of duty. They do it all in obedience to the ringer, in total trust that he knows what he is doing, in totally belief that he is going to let out of them the most beautiful symphony ever… and their sound will reach to the entire town! Bells are very much what we should be Victor… and I want to hang one here to remember every time I pass by it to be a bell in the hands of my Ringer…” She looks in his eyes and adds “What do you think?”
“And where do we get one?” he replies with a wide grin on his face and an overwhelming feeling of happiness in his heart, for he knew he made the right choice marrying her.

He Flourished...

It has been a while since I have shared with you some plant insight (I hope you miss these because I really love them)! 
I discovered something (Christopher Columbus is very much likely to be one of my ancestors...)! I discovered the plant of Jack and the Beanstalk... Okay maybe not... obviously, beanstalk ... But I did discover one very cool plant! It was at the door of a good friend of mine... Sort of a dense bush of green antennas, small stems in all directions on one thicker stem... Sort of the tree you would draw when you try to draw a leafless oak tree but without the brown part, the trunk that is! 
I do not know what they named it but I baptised ours Eugene! Wait... No! I did not steal it! My friend captured my very subtle fascination about it ...(OH MY! I LOVE THAT PLANT!!! sort of reaction) so she cuts one of the thicker stems and tells me to put it in a cup of water for some time and soon it will start to have some roots and then I can plant it and wait (sort of an eternal wait) for it to become a huge blob like hers! So did I! I put the stem in a cute red cup and long story short, the plant started to have roots and now it is all in the ground breeding peacefully! A very simple rooting method and it usually works well... Eugene is a very happy little antenna-tree reaching up constantly! I am happy! 

I visited another friend. I do tend to make a lot if visits... I believe it is an essential part of life and those who love to visit are usually wonderful people (my ego boost for the day!). There was something fascinating about this person and for some reason Eugene came back to my mind...
I do not know how to put it exactly. So please pardon me for the chaos below...
I thought it was the water! It must be it! The water is what sustained the mother of Eugene and water what made Eugene have roots and water is what will leave Eugene flourishing! And Psalm one came to my mind, the tress planted by the stream of water are always green...And I thought about the promise of the Lord that those who drink from Him will never thirst but living waters shall flow out of their hearts! It seemed to fit... It seemed to fit that even if I do not particularly live by a river, even if I am in the desert, the Water of Life is in me... Eugene, cut of the main tree did not die, will not die... And I thought I need to drink more of that cup, come more to that source... I cannot leave Eugene better than me! 
I thought that after all, at the end it is all the same, it is all related, Eugene on my balcony, his mother on her door, me in my office, my friend somewhere else... We are united, here, there, everywhere for we all have that same Sustainer, we drink from the same Well... and I know my friend does it so well! 

Friday, November 7, 2014

He Restores...

You have to excuse me dear reader for I have a tendency to repeat but some things are beyond time and therefore will never get old, used or repeated enough...
A few years ago I have painted a very beautiful ceramic vase (it fits perfectly here to mention that a monkey in the eyes of its mother is a deer) , it was in the shape of a lady wearing a dress and I chose green... because it is one wonderful colour. I felt very achieved for it truly was nicely done... But beware oh me! God humbles the proud, He does! A week or so after that my colleague came over to ask a question and... Oh the pity, oh the massacre... She hit the vase and it fell to a million piece (why do we say a million piece, I have not even counted but I think if I did, it would have probably been an odd number, something close to 573447 pieces...). But! I did not despair! I went again the ceramic shop and did another, vase, not dress-like but yes green indeed... It was even more professional than the first one with such a finesse... that I forgot the humility lesson! So yeah (you guessed that right), God intervened again through my dad (Papito I love you)... Papa did not even let it live for a day... broken beyond repair! 
That hurt. That really hurt... and for quite some time I felt life was a bit like this. My life that is. A vase, and each time I feel it is being crafted beyond perfection, it breaks, it falls, it just becomes a mess, my perfect dream crumbles... Until the day I gave up dreaming of my own and started to pray to dream of Heaven... And something right then happened... The fullness of Life swept me away... God is faithful even when we are not. He does not despair (if I didn't! would He!!). He gathered the dust I became and breathed His Spirit again in it and made again a jar out of my million scatter piece...
He surpasses our expectations... He does not just fix the vase... He paints it with meticulous details. He looks for ever wound and heals it. Every thing that meant to us in that old vase is replaced with a better meaning, with a prefect definition... He reconstructs our memories, our dreams, our vision...And He cares. He cares for us, He cares for me more than the lilies! And once I was lost but now I am found! I have been dignified, I have been crowned, I have been Graced with a grâce upon grace!

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

But Love...

There are times when nothing makes sense and times when everything does. 
There are times when we deserve every bit of what we are going through and times when we do not. There are times when we understand and times when we are left puzzled, lost, confused. 
There are times when we see it coming and times when we are just hit in the face...
And as I realize this and write it down I remember the famous words of Qoheleth: ( Ain't his name so cool? I wonder if my husband will ever let me name my son Qoheleth... who is that dude? He is "presumably" the writer of the book of Ecclesiastes...)... He puts it so eloquently (something I need to learn!! eloquence!)
For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven:
a time to be born, and a time to die;
a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted;
a time to kill, and a time to heal;
a time to break down, and a time to build up;
a time to weep, and a time to laugh;
a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
a time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together;
a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
a time to seek, and a time to lose;
a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
a time to tear, and a time to sew;
a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
a time to love, and a time to hate;
a time for war, and a time for peace.

But Love!

I was thinking about love a lot lately.  Love is different... (I guess obviously...)
I had a little existential crisis over the weekend that actually continued with me till today. I felt overwhelmed by love. Covered, followed, blended in love, like how milk and coffee blend, how our shadows follow us, how the rain covers us... and all I could think was, ouf, dear me! I do not deserve not one mite of it! I felt so deeply the love of my friends, the love of my family, the love of strangers, the love of community, the love of things (yeah things tend to give love to us in their secret way), the love of God... I thought love will never make sense! Love will never be earned or deserved... or even logical... but there it is in abundance, and despite of who I am or what I do... And tears filled my eyes (they actually physically did at many points of these last couple days...) because I felt so helpless! How can I repay my friends for all that love, how can I repay my family, how can I repay the Lord for loving me with an everlasting love... But really I cannot. Because Love does not function that way... we accept it. As an act of love we do, we accept love gratefully, gracefully! 

And like the flow of a river that can never come back to the source, it walks its way and irrigate as it flows... So it is with the love we receive, we give it back with a bit of ourselves, with the fish and the pebbles inside us... and we hope that one day, when it evaporates it will come back the where it started! 
And so I wipe my tears (even though I know they will come back because this reality is just so real to grasp!) and I set before my eyes a standard, to love like He loves! 

Thank you and I love you! (you being every single of you who have shielded me with their kindess, generosity and love!)

Monday, October 27, 2014

A Rainbow... in my sky!

Have you ever seen a rainbow in the sky? A few months ago I saw one for the first time so so clearly! and it was something! I ran in the house like a crazy person (I think I actually am a crazy person...) YEY A RAINBOW... yey yay hooray youpiiii *throws confetti all around* ... 
You know how you can never see where it started and where it ends? And then there are all these wonderful colours against the beautiful sky with the sun and the gentle rain... It is something! Noah, the promise, the goodness of the Lord, all sorts of wonderful range of ideas come to ones mind when one sees or thinks of a rainbow... 
Today I remembered that day when I saw that rainbow... 
Today is one of those days when my mind is overwhelmed with beautiful ideas... 
Today is one of those days when I feel that there is a rainbow you can in no way discover where it starts in my mind and where it ends in my heart... 
Today is one of those days where I can see this amazing range of colours painted all over my life, scattered all over my sky...
Today is one of those days where my eyes cry this gentle rain, these gentle tears of joy...
Today is one of those days where I stand before the Morning Star, the Sun of righteousness and ask Him, with David, "what can I return to you for all your goodness to me..." and I say, "I will call upon Your name" as long as I live because my eyes have seen your salvation... because I have tasted and seen how good you are to me... because I have been blessed with a friend that I will never ever deserve, because this very day a wonderful person was born because this very day twenty six years ago someone appeared that will set the standard too high for any human being to match in loveliness, purity, sweetness, generosity... and all the good qualities you can ever think of...
Today I throw confetti around, today my heart skips a beat, today I feel I won the jackpot... because no one on earth has a friend like the one I have! I am blessed beyond measure... Today I am joyful.
And today I pray to the giver of all gifts to send a friend like mine to every wandering soul on this earth... 

Ps. Happy Birthday S!... I think I am happier than you today for the only reason I can have you as a best friend but you can't have you hihi!

Monday, October 13, 2014

A Type Oh!

There is a strange habit of disliking typos among the smart or the  gifted with a sharp attention. I am neither smart nor sharp and therefore typos do not particularly bother me (and do please forgive me when I fall into one...)
It is something to have an opinion about a thing and to experience a thing (the latter not always the best option).
The other day I got a message asking me about a phrase I used. The phrase was "kit together". I explained with much enthusiasm that it comes from one psalm that was on my mind that day (and went in that loophole of explaining the explained explanation... poor people who fall into my hands). I, too, diligently, specified the psalm... only with a difference of ten! 149 instead of 139... I got a reply that I am maybe a little bit shifted to the right... I tried explaining that in Arabic it is the opposite direction hence my confusion (not really...but I did think of using that argument)
I was thinking if I wrote one hundred thyrti nine (am I the only one who finds thyrti aesthetic? anyway) the mistake would have been more of a comic inclination than of a trivial one unlike the difference between 129 and 149 (139!). Somehow a letter typo is much easier to excuse and understand than a number typo. A gift for 10000 usd is not the same as a one for 1000 usd (though both are really much). A gift for ten thousand dollars and one for ten thousands dollars is basically the same and that is quite an expensive one! I'll be happy with much less! (humble me)...
A moment of indignation! Oh the injustice towards the numbers! But when that moment passed, I was left with some realities. 
Mistakes, though the same, are not of the same effect! 
It is something to sin knowing the Lord, and another sinning while not knowing Him. As if one is like a number typo and the other like a letter one...
I was thinking that it is maybe true that the letter typo shows quickly and get that little zigzag line under it that points all attention to it (Oh the shame!)  while a number typo goes unnoticed, undetected...  but one can be as quickly corrected as noticed and swiped away and the other can ramp and damage and still hide unless one comes with an intention of attention! I do not want to sit idle there watching other people's red lines and letting small things corrupt my heart! I want to remove that hidden zero here and that extra apostrophe there! I decided to check my life with that intention to check for every type...oh! and to be gentle whenever I see a red zigzag out there in world, I might be sitting there with a shift of ten to the left! 
I decided to go to my Editor...I thought that whatever my type was, no matter what the typo was...there is one same forgiving restoring Lord waiting to edit and correct with grace and mercy!

Saturday, October 4, 2014

Day of Atonement

Yesterday evening I had one of these experiences that make one stop, wonder and stand in awe before the Maker of the Universe, before the Living God.
I discovered Thursday that there is something called Yom Kippur (Kippour) in the Jewish calendar and that this year it coincides with Aid Al Adha (first time since 33 years...). I thought oh cool! that is something! 
Of course, sadly, I had no idea what this Kippur feast is about...blame the course of history! And no one around me knew for that matter... And so I searched and I discovered!

Yom Kippur is apparently the holiest day of the year for the Jewish people (and that is saying something!! Them being the People of God and all...). I learned that it means the day of great mercy, the day of atonement...
This is day when Moses and Joshua heard a strange noise coming from the camp "It is not the sound of victory, it is not the sound of defeat; it is the sound of singing that I hear." said Moses It was the day the people of the Great I AM, built a calf and sang and danced for it! That day when the wrath of God could have consumed them. to. aches. but because of the plea of Moses, He did not! Then the Lord relented and did not bring on his people the disaster he had threatened. He had great, great mercy! The day of Great mercy.
I decided for that evening, (Friday evening that is), the eve of the day, to watch a Schindler's List. I cried a lot. It was not the first time I watch it or the first time I get moved by the atrocity of the Shoha (or any war and genocide for that matter) but that night something happened in my heart. I felt the weight of the world falling on me and a call to fall on my knees and ask for God mercy over me and over all the earth for every calf we erected, for every other god we worshiped, for all sins... I am not Moses, not near that at all but as I fell on my knees and closed my eyes, one Man I could see, one Man that saves, one Man that delivers. The One. The One that will deliver not like Moses did! The One that will take the sin of the world upon Him! The One that will atone, will do it once and for all. The Perfect sacrifice. It was a moment of crystal clarity where the truth shines so much that my eyes could not but flow rivers. Jesus Christ. His name is healing. His name is mercy. Wow! What a God we have! The Redeemer.. Not with blood of lamb but with the most precious Blood of The Lamb! It pierced my heart...
I woke up today with the word Mercy on my mind (yeah surprisingly!) and I even shared about this day discovery with a couple of people (I think they got bored of me mentioning "Oh did you know today is Yom Kippur?!"... sorry for that) but as the day passed I had one phrase coming back to my mind "The Lord is good to all"... The Lord is so good. People (by people I mean me!) He is so good. This is truth! Kippur day is not one day of the year for those who are in Christ. Kippur is right now. Kippur is right there a the feet of the cross. Come taste the goodness of the Lord. It is true. I know it seems too beautiful to believe but try it. He is good (with a stress on the is)...There is no limit to His bounty. No limit to His mercy. Because it is in Him who is Eternal. In Him, in Christ Jesus, the Alfa and Omega. Opener and Sealer. Beginning and End.

Friday, September 26, 2014

Shiny, Smooth Legs...

If you are a guy reading this, please don't quit before the end, I promise there is a point. 

After this post, I bet I will get offers for beauty magazines and such... or not! 

I have to say, I really love the feeling of silky legs. 

Yes, I was thinking about hair removal today... Blame the scotch-tape for the simulation and the reminder... It was pretty scientific actually. When did women start to remove their body hair? How did we evolve from sugar waxing to shaving? Actually how on earth! did someone think to put hot wax or burned sugar on their legs.. (I will believe it was by accident, just like how by accident we discovered that we can eat the inside a watermelon and the outside an apple... totally random mistake that lead to a discovery. yes.). anyway! It was not the first time that I go into the anthropology of hair removal in my mind, but today I had to prepare coffee three times and so I had plenty of time to philosophise. 
I thought that hair removal methods basically gather under three categories: 
1- Shave, Cream,...: it includes all methods that do not dare to go deeper than skin level. This method consists of applying a cream or shaving tools on the surface of your body and by some type of movement the hair falls. It is pretty painless, causes basically no harm unless you get a scar by accident. Silky smooth effect will last for two days more or less.
2- Pluck it from the roots: it includes most of the tortuous ways from waxing to electrical epliation. This method consists of plucking the hair from the very roots of its existence only to leave the bulb down there living and toiling for a new hair in a week time or so depending on how much vitamin you take. The amount of pain is atrocious. No matter how you try it, it's just going to hurt big time and get red and just ouch!
3- Radiation: it includes all sorts of weirdly conceived laser machines and such. This method is basically very serious, leave no root, leave no liveable trace. It goes deep to the bulb and kills it right there (wow, it suddenly got violent here... excuse me). No hair forever. Nip it in the bud. Bam. Done.

All this got me thinking about how deep are some habits I have, deep as the hair bulb and it got me thinking about how do I approach sin in my life, smooth shaving effect, two, three days, a little more serious work, plucking the hair right at its roots or going seriously down there into the very core of my heart and dealing there with all ill, radically. I pray I go with the third. 
I know the idea is not new, we do know that we have to go there in where the roots are but it was new to me to think about it when thinking about smooth shiny nice legs... It will take a while to dissociate that image. 
So! Whenever you cross a sexy lady (or me of course), try to guess what method she used... or not!

ps. yey for a golden font for those shiny legs ^^

Thursday, September 25, 2014

Twenty Six Years...

I remember for my twenty second birthday I wrote an email to most of my friends back then titled "On My Birthday, On His Faithfulness"

Today I want to witness of twenty-two years of faithfulness, love and wonderfulness of my God.

I want to witness of joys and of sorrows, of rest and of pain, of ups and downs, but more essentially of a God who carried me through it all.

I want to witness of a God who fearfully and wonderfully made me and did not stop (and will not stop) working in me, shaping me and pruning me to become more of His son.

And I can say with confidence that the Lord dressed me like the lilies of the fields or even more beautifully and took care of my needs like birds of air and perhaps even better...
Today I can say with confidence that I am a sinner redeemed!

I had life, the fullness of it, in Christ Jesus my Saviour.

Today, four years later, I sit here and look back and think, wow, He is truly unchangeable. Every word true then is true now! Every thought true then is true now... He started a work in me ( and trust me I am one hard project!) and He will bring it to completion! I thought, wow, again and again I would say the same exact thing, perhaps with more assurance, perhaps with more examples, perhaps with more conviction, but I can sit here and repeat every word... Only because He is FAITHFUL!
He is faithful to His promises. He is faithful in every aspect of who He is and because of that very faithfulness, I exist. 
Today I know if I lived four more years, one more year, one more day, or just another minute, I am convinced that I can repeat with the same deep belief every word yet again. He is the same yesterday today and forever. 
I can't wait for the day when I will be eternally in the presence of the Timeless!
I have deep joy filling my heart today. 

ps. People born on the twenty fifth of September (excluding me because there should be an exception to every rule) are just wonderful. If you have not met one (besides me, obviously) let me know because there are a few in a thousand (mille) and they are so worth getting to know them! Jinks to them all! 

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

He aha te waiata Maori Ako ahau

Or "What the Maori Chant Taught me", if we trust Google translate, which obviously sometimes I do...

Yesterday I was looking for the source of the quote Turn your face toward the sun and the shadows will fall behind you and all I found was that it was a Maori proverb. Moving on to other things, I forgot all about it until today I had the strong urge to search for some Maori traditional chanting videos. 
I have to admit, I have a deep fascination, passion, love, whatever you want to name it, for sounds and languages. I try to listen at least once a week to a foreign (to me) language interview. There is so much beauty in that "chaos". I am always thinking about what if there is a universal language, or what if one day I will suddenly start understanding Armenian or Russian or Japanese or or...(I do have a pentecostal spirit no!?). I think the mind has the ability to process what he is receiving and even if it does not make any sense, it sure does make an impact of some sort... that is a conviction I have. I might not be able to prove it but you can try it and let me know.
So today I looked up one traditional Maori song and ow... These chants deeply moved me.
I will try to describe it a little bit without slaughtering it. 
There is one lead person who shouts some lines and rhythmically people repeat after him or answer him (I assume). There is as well beautiful clapping and percussions of some sort going on very very precisely. You can feel the discipline of such a tribe. You can feel their unity. You can sense it in your heart, every beat, every word, every sound being taken so seriously... and this marked me...
One little side note: I had the other day a wonderful talk with a beautiful amazing lady about community.
Hearing the Maori people sing could not but remind me of the blessing of community. It made me realise in a way I cannot explain in words that God did indeed create people to live in communities (and hearing me saying this, is one huge miracle!). There is so much harmony in their chanting that you cannot help think that the world was created to be like this, a group of people functioning together to bring beauty, to bring Beauty (copying Augustine, Oh Beauty ancient oh Beauty so new!)
Pardon me if I ramble a little bit still... There is something else striking in this community of chanters... They follow perfectly their leader... There is perfect obedience to rhythm of the group... No one goes starting a new song alone or shouts above the others. Now, I am not a partisan of silly flock following but there is something striking in humble obedience... I am sure these people where free and confident and at some point they may have requested this or that song, but while the song was going on, they all followed, they all united. 
I am sure I will be thinking about these beautiful Maori people for quite some time still... but for now, I will thank God for my little (beyond) lovely community and I will obey my elders... and perhaps to the world around us, we can bring a song from above, a beautiful witness to the ever old, ever new Beauty!

ps. I wish there was a gold font colour...

Friday, September 12, 2014

Jasmine Tea...

Oh how I love Tea! 
Oh how I love Thee! 
Let it be known that every time a blogpost is published, a cup of tea was consumed. Not any type of tea! Jasmine green tea! Imagine it like this: Jasmine green tea is the tea saint and all other teas are striving to sainthood! (not that I do not drink or like other teas but you know in life there is always the good and the best... sort of how everyone I know is good but I am the best... (okay maybe not!))
It is really so beautiful how I can feel every sip going down in me. There is nothing like a cup of hot tea really... from waiting for the water to boil till the moment you realise suddenly oh! where's my tea!! Goodness did I really finish it! and I start the mourning process... (okay maybe not!)
Today I have been thinking about how regular green tea becomes jasmine green tea... It a normal green tea scented with aroma from jasmine blossoms... "Tea leaves are harvested in the early spring and stored until the late summer when fresh jasmine flowers are in bloom. Jasmine flowers are picked early in the day when the small petals are tightly closed. The flowers are kept cool until nightfall. During the night jasmine flowers open, and release their fragrance, and this is when the tea scenting takes place. " (thank you google) That is one seriously cool process! And I have been thinking about it all day... It is fascinating really, just being with the blossom the tea gets so enriched and become saint of all teas and I was thinking what if I am sorted with a lot of jasmine and gardenia, will I become scented and lovely? (I mean of course more than I am now... which is quite a high aim!) But really I was thinking about all this natural and nice process and then I remembered how we actually know that staying in the presence of God infuse us with His aroma and how we are his perfume in this world, the more we stay close, the more we fill the room we enter in... And I thought I really! want to be a God scented tea...
But then another idea came to my mind. One very sweet thought 
... The blessing of friends... How God picks all the loveliest blooms and put them in my life... I remembered how they have changed how I taste, have transformed me from a normal regular tea to a jasmine one... I remembered their sweet scent and how it covered my filthiness, how their love covered my mistakes. I remembered how they changed my sadness to joy... I remembered how patient they are, how like the jasmine just waits patiently for the tea to be scented, they wait patiently, bear with me lovingly, encourage me...  I have been blended with the prettiest flowers and I cannot but thank God everyday for this immense gift!

Thursday, September 11, 2014

Set Him Free!

I really find the octopus very fascinating and beautiful and today I am remembering him on a rather solemn note. 

I cannot get over the fact that we actually feel in our brains and not our hearts! It is there, I sense it in my being! Deep there... piercing, squeezing, working! Right there in the centre of my whole body... in where it beats... 
I had a rather strange experience yesterday... I felt so strange in a place where I once so belonged... I felt I will suffocate if I stay one more minute there... I thought God please deliver my soul from all this...  and I heard my mind repeating the line from the Psalm... Surely he shall deliver thee from the snare of the fowler.
There was a lot of gossip in the other room... there was a lot of it! I wanted to leave but I was unmotorised waiting for my mother to come... There was a lot of gossip and I thought oh! this is so wrong... but I felt helpless... I wanted to vindicate the people but at the same time I did not want to go in there and be part of it all...
I felt like my heart what trapped by the long numerous pods of an octopus... And my mind racing and suddenly out of the very blue I was afraid. I really cannot explain but I felt a weird kind of fear... I almost cried (okay maybe I did have a tear or two). I had no reason to be scared but there my heart was beating as if I was chosen to give a speech... (you surely are thinking that I am crazy now... and maybe I am...). I prayed a lot and it is beautiful how God works. I felt peaceful. I went in, said goodbye and decided to walk a bit out till my ride arrives... And when I was walking I was thinking about gossip and how heavy it is... How one word can destroy a family. How one story can damage a relationship. I felt remorse for every time I fell in that trap, every single time I let this octopus get hold of me and I decided to set him free, take him out of my life forever!

Thursday, September 4, 2014

Ha Hoo Ha: a Hot French Fry

I had a long drive alone late in the afternoon yesterday and long drives  have this ability to make your mind sound more palpable than anything (or perhaps I really do talk to myself then... oops! shhh). I was looking through the window (umm, there was a little bit traffic, don't worry I am a safe driver... I guess...) and I saw a guy with one hot French fry on his palm and holing another one to his mouth in the other hand, I could not hear him but I could guess his ha! hoo! ha! reaction... truly hot, I did see the smoke, yep!  but he seriously enjoyed the first privileged bites that I started craving for some! -Potatoes and fries in particular are really something! I think upon arriving to heave, one of my very lovely dear friends will be escorted directly to meet the inventor of French fires to get a chance to thank him/her personally... but trust me the joy will be his to meet her!-

This is not a post about fries, I keep telling myself, but it's lunchtime and I am staving! So... Back to my car drive idea... Back to that guy with a fry (poetic, ain't it?) When I saw him so happy about his fry, I had a very vivid picture come back to my mind from my childhood, when my lovely mum (I really love her!) would be cooking something so yummy (yeah you imagined it right! that was every singly day!) she would call us and hand us those tiny tea plates and put one bit, piece of what was there to taste, and trust me if you never experienced such a privilege, you missed a lot! There is something in knowing beforehand, in getting to taste something before you get it all in, the first few toes in the ocean before you dive in... it's unexplainable but it really is one of the loveliest feelings ever (beside peeing after a huge cup of coke... agreed!). I heard my mind thinking out loud in the car, smiling big to my reflection in the mirror (ummm there was a little bit of traffic,euu, yeah... again!): This is it! This is it when we pray, we get that tiny bit, lovely bite of what will be there in heaven! That is it! That is it when we gather with our bothers and sisters in Christ  (specially that one who will meet the French Fry inventor) and we feel almost drunk from happiness... that is it, a sip of the beautiful fellowship we will have in heaven! And I thought wow, all what we live here, all the goodness of the Lord we witness, His nearness, His glory, His love, His comfort... all this is but one hot French fry on our palms while the rest is being cooked for us up there, to have eternally, abundantly, everlastingly! I was (still am) happy!

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

A Postal Stamp

So I was thinking about clothe tags, I have a friend who used to collect them! It was so cool to discover that... I thought wow how something utterly insignificant can mean so much to someone in particular.. and then I started thinking about stamps...

I love to write letters and send them by mail. I love post offices (“In black ink my love may still shine bright." okay maybe not to the point of reciting sonnets to it but you get the point!). I like to watch people there, I like to see them weigh the parcels and pick the right stamp and so on... And most of all, I love to have this small conversations with the worker at the desk (they often are so kind and let me do the job and put the date and all myself... I love it! It makes me feel so official, like wow I can issue and official postal card... People! look at me! (I think after this post God will have a lesson in humility waiting for me at the door...))
There is a moment when you feel like you're the champion...Sticking the stamp on the letter! It feels like when Jesus said "It's done!" (maybe not that dramatic... okay), and of course you know how we do that...
-Pick the stamp from the desk
-Lick the stamp
-Stick the stamp
Now if you see someone trying it for too long and not working... Let me remind you: we evolve... there are now sticker stamp... anyway!
Stamps in use are really cheap and are pretty useless unless you want to actually send something by mail or you are a collection-er. (One time the officer did not have enough change to give me so he paid me with stamps... I was never able to use them in the supermarket! ah well!). Collection stamps... they become so expencisve with age, so valuable! Old, vintage, authentic, new, limited, sort of coolness all over...
So stamps were on my mind and of course my birthday (25 September in case you forgot!)! I am getting pretty old ladies and gentlemen! 26 in less than a month! and I was thinking ouf what a stamp I am! (but please don't lick me!!)
We people are really like stamps... Pretty much useless unless we are to be in someone's collection, on someone's card... unless someone decides that we are so valuable, so limited, so cool, so whatever nice thing you insert... And we, like stamps indeed, gain value with age and become coolness all over (at least I do!)! I was thinking... we are stamped by the Blood of the Lamb... if for no one else, for no other purpose than to be His and in His collection, we are worth it all!

ps. If you want you can give me your address, I would LOVE to mail you something... 
pps. Tanzania was not picked by chance...

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

They Beg, I'm Blessed!

Third world country. Developing country. Poverty. Paupers. Beggars. Burning sun. Streets. Homeless. Injustice. Cruelty. A million pejorative thought comes to mind when we're stuck in traffic coming or going to Beirut during rush hours.

About half a year ago I made a decision: I will keep loose money in my car and purse for whenever I see a beggar. Surprisingly, I got many lectures about how I am encouraging people not to find a proper work, or how I have no idea what this money is funding (some sort of theory that it's going to terrorists) or simply people telling me that I am out-rightly supporting child labour and such... Maybe they are right. It seems that I am always wrong when it comes to logic (ah well... I was born with limited functioning brain cells... which reminded me of one of the greatest quotes ever: There runs a strange law through the length of human history — that men are continually tending to undervalue their environment, to undervalue their happiness, to undervalue themselves. The great sin of mankind, the sin typified by the fall of Adam, is the tendency, not towards pride, but towards this weird and horrible humility. G. K. Chesterton.-- Do you ever wonder how the brain associate thought? I am there writing about beggars and bam! Humility and Chesterton then bam! brain association... Anyway!!)
So rolling the criticism off my back (the expression is I think, roll it off the duck's back, one dear friend taught me that and since I decided to make it my own... and to become a duck! (I already heard your laugh in my mind!)) I went on with my decision and gave one pound to each beggar I saw. Time flew, I did not become any poorer...I did not get any richer for that matter.
I was driving to work today (I guess this is becoming the "once upon a time" sentence to me) a beggar came, I gave her some money and she started to bless me saying things such as "May God make your future bright", "May God make you prosper", "May God protect you"... Every single time I gave some poor person a ride or money or whatever, they blessed me compulsively. That made it sort of mechanical or a habit to hear and it did not really trigger any thought until today! Today I thought, wow! I was showered with blessings for just one pound! And I thought, wow! of course God will hear them, God gives ear to the broken hearted! I thought since when the name of God was taken so lightly by those who hear it? like right yeah God will bless me just because you! said it?! YES! He will!! The name of the Lord, the psalmist says, shakes mountains and moves oceans! People dared not use His name Allah, Yahweh without reverence, awe and fear... or even really at all and some Jews/Messianic till our days will not pronounce the name of "I AM" and would even in typing type it Y-hewh... And I refuse to take it lightly!
I thought, I sure am buying blessings that count! I am truly blessed, come to think of it... More than I deserve! And maybe the lovely shouts of beautiful blessings did work in my favour, somehow...