Gratitude, a way forward in the dark

Another great devotional from Liz Milani (The Practice Co devotional app - on the theme of gratitude in a time of trial. I made a note of this post when first reading it back in April. It's sentiments still very much apply today. HOW TO SEE IN THE DARK - Part 7

When you feel like you can't see the way forward, or that your current experiences are murking up the water making it hard to make decisions and to know what to do, gratitude will clear the way, it will open your eyes, it will help you see in the dark.

And these are dark times. Whether its COVID-19, job and income loss, a sense of hopelessness, relationship heartache, chronic pain, anger, frustration... whatever it is that is clouding your judgement, tightening your heart - sometimes the way forward is hard to see for all the mess and clamour of life. There is so much happening on so many different levels, it's natural and easy to feel overwhelmed and stunned into paralysis. But you know …

"A Beautiful Day In The Neighbourhood" - being Christ for others

A while back I watched the Tom Hanks film “A Beautiful Day In The Neighbourhood”, based on real-life encounter between US children's TV legend Mr Rogers and a hard-bitten journalist. I discovered Mr Rogers for myself as an 11 yr. old visiting my sister in New Orleans with my mum in 1980 but he didn’t really click with me at that point. Thanks to this film I have now very much warmed to both the TV persona of Mr Rogers and the man behind that persona, Fred Rogers. In fact, I think the two are pretty much one and the same. One thing I like about him (as portrayed by Tom Hanks) is that what you saw was what you got, whether it was on the tv show or in real life. After a bit of research, it would seem that this is a true reflection of how he was.  Given recent events in the aftermath of George Floyd's death, the below scene says so much. Apparently it did really happen. For me, it's is a taste of heaven. With the current climate surrounding abuse, the request in his signature so…

We are one tonight and we’re singing it out

I’ve been watching and listening to this Switchfoot video today for the first time in a while: “We Are One Tonight”

This is still one of my favourite videos of all time. Used to use it in Film Studies classes for teaching editing. It provided a good opportunity to bring an element of spiritual reflection into a secular subject. 
I am struck today not just by the visual humour + skill, but also by the lyrics and how they speak to me during this strange time:
"We built these cities to stand so tall We've lost our walls...
We are one tonight And we're singing it out ... And the world is flawed But these scars will heal
I don't want to fight about it now With the whole world upside-down
Please slow down The stars are coming out..."
Blessings to you all. 🙏

Mixtapes + memory

Since 1987, I've complied generally 2 mixtapes of songs a year (Best Bits 1998 Vol. 2, etc...) and also compilations of classical music. I started on C90 cassettes, moved to CDs and then on to iTunes/Apple Music playlists. Right now, I'm listening to a mix from 2013. I often associate particular mixes or tracks with moments in my life. It's fascinating to look back at how there's often a subconscious narrative thread running through the choice and order of the tracks. Listening to these mixes helps me remember events and how God has been with me each step of the way. This never fails to bring comfort, as do photos. I've also always taken lots. I currently have over 16,000 on my computer, including paper photos of family members that I scanned onto computer nearly 20 yrs. ago. 
Since 1987, I've given a one or more mixtapes/CDs/playlists each year as a Christmas present to one of my sisters who moved to New Orleans in 1979. We've remained close despite the dis…

3 courageous athletes, 2 black, 1 white - 1 was forgotten

I remember first reading about Peter Norman a few years ago, but what a timely reminder in today's world of 3 people, 2 black, 1 white, who took a courageous stand against racism + injustice together. The update at the end is a wonderful lesson + shows the greatness of Norman.
Here's the article. 

How Will You Go - Crowded House (cover version - Covideo Sessions No. 20)

"Escape is on your mind again...!" A favourite of mine from the early '90s, Crowded House's How Will You Go from their album Woodface. Lyrics: Escape is on your mind again Escape to a far away land At times it seems there is no end To long hard nights of drinking How will you go How will you go Drive through the wind and the rain Cover it up Cover it up I'll find you a shelter to sleep in I fell over on the couch again But you know not all sleep is wasted Your dreams are alcohol inspired I can't find a better way to face it How will you go How will you go Drive through the wind and the rain Cover it up Cover it up I'll find you a shelter to sleep in And you know I'll be fine Just don't ask me how it's going Gimme time, gimme time 'Cause I want you to see Round the world, round the world Is a tangled up necklace of pearls How will you go How will you go Drive through the wind and the rain Cover it up Cover it up I'll find you …

God so loved the world