You think you know someone, then you learn the back story…
Do you ever meet someone, get to know them a bit, and form ideas in your mind about them? “He’s weird.” “Why on earth would she do that??” “What is this dude’s deal?” I’m not proud to admit it, but I’ll be honest, I have. I like to think that I still treat people well, despite pigeonholing them – hopefully you do, too – however it’s a sobering moment when I recognise that I’ve done this, when I realise that I jumped to conclusions; I didn’t know the whole story – and I shouldn’t have needed to, in the first place, but it seems to help.
I recently attended the memorial service for an elderly gentleman in our church, during which I was not only reminded of the joys that await him in the other world, but where I also learned a fair deal about this kind man whom I hadn’t known very well. In the five years that we’ve lived in Australia, I’ve seen him a couple dozen times. About two years ago he stopped coming to church, due to his decreased mobility, but prior to that he used to come to church every other week – travelling nearly two hours by public transit to get here! – sometimes arriving right as it ended. (“Why would he bother coming all this way when he clearly wouldn’t get here remotely on time?!”) I’d had brief conversations with him – if you could call them that; we didn’t seem to have much in common, so I’d ask him the vague question of how he was doing, or he’d tell me some long story about a particular tree in the church gardens. (“That’s nice, but I’m really not all that interested. Why is he telling me SO much trivial information?”) From all accounts, he seemed to me like an odd man, someone whom I viewed as an acquaintance but not a friend, whose company I willingly tolerated but didn’t seek out. We were friendly, but, frankly, I was kind of put off by his weirdness. Continue reading PeRspEctiVe
I feel lost; but all is not lost. I can see some light.
I take comfort in my new lostness in Psalm 23 (NKJV):
“The Lord is my shepherd;
I shall not want.
He maketh me lie down in green pastures;
He leads me beside still waters.
He restores my soul;
He leads me in the paths of righteousness
For His Name’s sake.”
When I feel lost, as I do now, I sing this to myself. I have taken to singing it with the children at bedtime, with me singing the alto part. When I am lost, I sing. This restores my soul and I am reminded always to look to the Lord.
We moved house. We moved cities 1600km (995miles) from our previous home. We left the comfort of friends and family. We let go of things in our lives that fed our souls. We have moved away from the New Church community that we loved and were part of. This has been a difficult move. I feel lost. Continue reading Seeing the Light
Intern’s Note: This story was so full of correspondence and imagery that I couldn’t fit everything I thought into a short article! If you are up for a longer read, here is the uncut version.
A child sees the world in terms of bad and good, wrong and right. When she grows up she can see the nuances of morality and ethics and sometimes must argue over the distinction between bad and good. This transition can be a difficult and long road but it can lead to a strength and courage that would be impossible to find without the experience of growing up.
In the writings of Emanuel Swedenborg it is revealed that the stories of the word are representative and hold an inner meaning. Using Swedenborg’s science of correspondences I have found one possible inner meaning for another ancient text; the story of Jorinde and Joringel, a German folk story which was first recorded in writing by Jacob and Wilhelm Grimm. Continue reading Out of the Witch’s Castle
I grew up in a household with many books. Especially children’s books.
One of my Mama’s favourites, and mine too, is a sweet book called Miss Rumphius.
In this book, a little girl dreams of growing up and traveling and seeing the world like her sea-Captain-artist Grandpa, and then when she is old, living in a house by the sea as he does. He tells her there is also a special thing she must do…she must make the world a more beautiful place.
“‘All right’ said Alice, but she did not know what that would be.”
Little Alice Rumphius grows up and has many travel adventures and experiences…and eventually gets older, and lives in a little house by the sea that she just loves. She hurts her back, and becomes ill, and as she lies in bed getting better, she wonders (worries?) what she will do to fulfill the important thing her Grandfather charged her with…to make the world a more beautiful place.
Continue reading Real Life…(when I grow up)