community

Kindness Pandemic #2

Today I was truly blessed to spend time on our nearby River. Our family tend to be more in-landers/busy no time for fun farmers ( :p ) . Today however my son was invited to a birthday party down the river fishing with a classmate. Hubby was busy farming (sheep to bring in for shearing Monday) but the kids and I made another trek into town for the adventure.

An added bonus was I know the mother well and made a bold request.

Lately we’ve been catching up with another family of one of my son’s classmates. A note came home from school with a phone number suggesting an outing to a local playground – the boy’s both love soccer. A few weeks later I sent a text and made the connection so we could catch up. This family has been in Australia for 18 months, just 6 months in our local area. Whilst the children have attended international schools learning English all the way the mother is still learning, her native tongue being Arabic. It’s hard enough moving to a new town without any extra barriers (believe me as a somewhat itinerant pastor’s daughter, I know!).

I’m so proud when I made the late request yesterday asking if I could invite this family to join us, Mum and son said yes. I’m so excited to be getting introduced to lots of new cuisine and seeing the kids all have fun together. Life’s greatest joy (for me) is knowing I’m making a positive difference in someone’s life and today I’m sure I and all the beautiful people around me did just that.

Hope you too brought a smile to another’s face today 🙂

God bless

GJ

community · faith · life

Kindness Pandemic

The last few weeks have seen so much change in our society and with it at times overwhelming anxiety. I confess to being scared to go to the shops unsure of what I’ll find. I’ve also been one of millions of parents thinking about the decision whether or not to send my children to school. Living in a country area, there’s a sense of false safety perhaps. But also living on a farm social isolation doe not feel all that new, and I know whats not entirely best for my mental health.

I was very blessed this week to be added to a facebook group with Mums from my sons class where we could share our choices and thinking. Within this group we also acknowledge the superhero efforts of our school and it’s staff and I can’t even describe the joy it gave me to be part of this group who arranged these gorgeous flowers for these very special people in ours and our childrens lives.

 

I’ve also been completely uplifted by The Kindeness Pandemic group on facebook recording kind deeds all over the place. Also learnt about Up Lit and read the darling book A man Called Ove today. So while the world may at times get us down, there always good to be found.

Praying for everyone in need at this time

God bless

GJ

ps I also recommend Humans of New York for good fuzzy feelings – have you got any recommendations? Any specific prayer requests? xo

 

community · life · political

#5 Sunday ABC

This is my very un-regular regular post! Please feel free to join in with your own responses either in the comments or as your own post 🙂

A is for Affirmation

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B is for Best, Worst and OMM

Best – Gosh it’s a bit hard to cast my mind back on the week that was – school went back for last term that’s a definite best (!) but other worthy mentions include, a beautiful christian funeral, a productive action plan meeting with a community group, first cricket game including shopping with my daughter and just generally a nice rate of busyness

Worst – Developing a cold, with a persistent dry throat – son waking up with ear aches

OMM – (On my mind) Watched the movie The Post last night about the Washington Post’s involvement in leaking the Pentagon Papers (about the US’s involvement in the Vietnam War) with Tom Hanks and Meryl Streep – it was a bit slow but supremely interesting, leading me on to a Wikipedia binge learning more about the real life events and characters.

I’ve also just finished reading Rogue Nation by Royce Kurmelovs a South-Australian non-fiction writer (and journalist) about Australia’s populist uprising and outsider politics. Although a bit too focused on Pauline Hanson for my liking, it did cover other minor parties and inferred why many Australians are dissatisfied with the major parties. A fascinating easy-to-read book about politics, good enough that I want to buy my own copy.

C is for Community

B came easy for me this week but A and C are a bit harder. It’s been a good week generally so I don’t really want to highlight the bad stuff but grief is a part of life and it shouldn’t be swept under the carpet.

In the last weeks I’ve lost three friends. I sit here typing and wondering how awful it is to say thankfully none too personally close to me (?) but all affecting my community. Death sadly is all around.

In relation to this topic, I am grateful to Lori Greer who shared two beautiful and poignant prayers on her blog this week. I hope she doesn’t mind my sharing of her words as she experiences the loss of her daughter in law to cancer. There are no words really for grief.

If the only prayer you ever say in your entire life is thank you, it will be enough.”   Meister Eckhart 1260-1328  Christian Theologian

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Talking about death and grief can be distressing and it is important that we take care of ourselves at such times. Access support by speaking to someone – a family member or friend or one of the many helplines available, for example lifeline on 131 114.

 

 

 

community · life · mental health

#4 Sunday ABC

I had so many thoughts for blogging this week and now that I’m finally sitting in front of the computer, it’s sadly quite a chore. But writing posts in my head is therapeutic, reading others words often inspires and connecting can turn a day around, so here’s Round 4.

Please feel free to join in with your own responses either in the comments or as your own post 🙂

My week in a nutshell – I’ve been flat and then productive and now tired and worried. My husband  has injured his foot just as we start harvest and I’m fairly well the worst nurse-wife ever.

A is for Affirmation

My motto for the week is to ride it out…..maybe not quite like this fella :p

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B is for Best, Worst and OMM

Best – Coming through a fog of flatness and the gratitude of feeling energetic again. enjoying some favourite episodes of Grey’s

Worst – Seeing jobs that need doing and having no desire to do them

OMM – (On my mind) How I will cope doing all the cooking and supporting my husband who will understandably get frustrated as he heals.

C is for Community

Katie from How I Killed Betty wrote two blogs this week that really hit home for me.

Attacking Life, or Running Away

and, What do you do to combat depression and/or anxiety?

She describes her blog as a diary on how to tackle depression and anxiety and it definitely helps me to have others share their journeys, ideas and challenges. Sometimes it can all feel hopeless or just hard work but when the skies clear…..

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You know it’s worth pulling through and that you can do it, time and time again.

 

community

#3 Sunday ABC

Welcome to Round 3 of my new-ish regular feature, please feel free to join in with your own responses either in the comments or as your own post 🙂

A is for Affirmation

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B is for Best, Worst and OMM

Best – Staying at the world’s best B&B aka my sister and brother-in-laws. They let me sleep in and serve bacon and egg muffins!

Worst – Feeling fatigued all week

OMM – (On my mind) I think I’ve been too tired to think this week :p but we do have our council elections voting slips to send back so have been thinking about some of the candidates and local issues.

C is for Community – this is normally when I share a favourite post or two from the last week. Today however I’m sharing today’s experience of worship. Our congregation was invited to attend a destination 2+hours away in another rural community. I love the feeling of being amongst family in whatever church we worship in. Today felt extra special being Reformation Sunday.

I’m sorry it’s short today. I debated not posting but I think it’s a fair reflection of my last week!

Ooops need to add a p.s. A shout out to OT’s and OT week, a profession I’m so proud and privileged to be a part of and special thanks to the amazing people we work with.

community

Celebrating NAIDOC

It’s NAIDOC Week in Australia and today the kids and I went to a local free event. Face painting, bbq, arts, sports, music and balloons. It was a great day out.

NAIDOC stands for National Aborigines and Islanders Day Observance Committee. It started primarily as a day of protest but has also become a celebration of Aboriginal culture.The theme for this year is “Because of her, we can!” What a wonderful recognition of the active and significant role models women are at community, local, state and national levels.

NAIDOC

I’ve had open in my tabs for weeks, the facebook page for The Songkeepers, an Australian documentary (by Naina Sen) about an Aboriginal women’s choir and their journey from the Northern Territory to Germany. They are now on tour in the United States whilst the documentary is screening in Australia. I just couldn’t close that tab until I wrote about this truly inspiring  (and at times comedic!) showing.

From the website:

In the churches of remote Central Australia, a 140-year musical legacy of ancient Aboriginal languages, German sacred poetry and baroque music is being preserved by four generations of song women that make up the Central Australian Aboriginal Women’s Choir. With their charismatic musical director Morris Stuart, the choir embarks on a historical tour of Germany, taking back the baroque Lutheran hymns – brought to Australia by German missionaries… but in their own Western Arrarnta and Pitjantjatjara languages. Together these remarkable women take their music and stories of cultural survival, identity and cross-cultural collaboration to the world. 
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Please check out their Facebook page (including a clip in front of the White House!) https://www.facebook.com/thesongkeepers/?fref=mentions

And for any Australians NITV is screening the documentary this Sunday night at 8.30pm. I strongly encourage you to tune in!

 

Bibliography:

https://www.naidoc.org.au/