Here's another lovely reflection, this time on friendship, from the makers of the DVO iPhone app. May you all be blessed with the kind of friendships it describes.
One who has unreliable friends soon comes to ruin, but there is a friend who sticks closer than a brother.
Proverbs 18:24 (NKJV)
We were not created to do life alone. No man, or woman, is an island. I have come to believe more and more that we need each other, we are all connected. I grew up with an idea that to 'need' another human being was a sign of weakness... but after a few years of living, I think it just shows our inherit need for closeness, for sharing and for community.
There is an ebb and flow to life mostly influenced by our actions and our reactions to what goes on in us and around us. We often find ourselves using these moments to point out and focus on what makes us different from each other - and for some reason, maybe it's human nature, it mostly seems to be in a negative light. We build walls and obstacles between each other through ignorance, offence, assumption... and so much more.
But we are all more alike than we realise. We all have the same basic needs - physical, emotional and spiritual. We all feel joy and pain, we all have hopes and fears... There is more that unites us and brings us together, than divides us.
In the Message version this verse reads: "Friends come and friends go, but a true friend sticks by you like family." Stick by those you love through thick and thin. I'm not suggesting that you stay in manipulative and abusive environments, get out of those as fast as you can... But to those you call friends and family, be committed, be forgiving, be true. This earth is in desperate need of more than just fair weather friends, it's crying out for people who value loyalty, faithfulness, truth, honour, grace and love... People who will cross fences, borders and preferences to reach out and extend kindness and compassion, to gather and hold, encourage and empower. Cultivate friendship of the heart not circumstance. Just as Jesus reached beyond our brokenness and into our lives, let's do the same for others.
Tear down the walls of difference, open your heart up, and be a true friend. It has the potential to change your world, someone else's world, and THE world. Love you guys...
Very sad news... Tony Doyle (Old Xav. - former pupil of mine) has passed away suddenly. Please keep him and his family in your prayers and thoughts. We will pray in our community for Tony and all the family. My heart goes out to them all. I have very fond memories of teaching Tony: a lovely personality, always smiling and joking.
The article that you will find here contains a very pertinent analysis of Neill Blomkamp’s wonderful film "District 9" in the light of the current refugee crisis. Here's the start of the article: "Sometimes the best way to approach the horrors of the real world is indirectly, through fantasy. Allegory can make important points free from the journalistic burdens. On its release in 2009, Neill Blomkamp’s District 9 was acclaimed as a clever sci-fi/action movie that used a story about alien refugees to explore South Africa’s shameful apartheid past.
But today it’s imagery and ideologies have a new resonance. Eight years after its release, as Europe struggles to cope with the ongoing migration crisis - and as media and politicians seek to dehumanise the most vulnerable of people - District 9 is more relevant than ever."