Sorry about the long silence, here is the list of excuses…
- We have a small child who likes pressing buttons, so only one of us can be on a computer at a time when he is at home.
- We bought a second hand PC for me, which took a while to organise and set up, and then turned out not to have enough memory to be useful, but it does now.
- I am sorely feeling the lack of a decent camera following our little house-breaking event, had hoped to rectify that by now, but…
- I was writing an essay in Spanish, which probably isn’t a great work of literature, but developing a topic over 6,000 reasonable quality words has been a good exercise, and hasn’t left me with too many brain cells to think about a lot else for a couple of weeks.
Here are some of the events of note from the last couple of weeks…
- The kingdom of God is being built in Argentina… Although I’m not sure we’re necessarily having a great deal of influence over it!
- Martin has been invited to produce the Bible study material to be used across all the cell-groups in our church. This is an unexpected opportunity, and he is leaping at the potential to have an influence over how the Bible is studied here.
- Joni has started going to a little kindergarten in the mornings. It is called “garabatos y redondels”, which means doodles and circles. We aren’t sure whether he is a doodle or a circle, but he seems to enjoy it. He has a little (or in his case three sizes too big) uniform to wear which he is modelling here.
- We have a new member of the family. Shrek was camped out on our door step for a month while we played hard to get and definitely weren’t going to adopt another dog, until the day we gave up and adopted another dog. The local kids had already named him Shrek, not sure why, he’s small and skinny and definitely not green, although he is quite a funny looking creature with his oversized top jaw, and only three toes on each front foot.
- Mr independent has learned to push his own pushchair. Unfortunately he can’t see, or steer; and any attempt to help him results in a major strop.
- I found the culprit who has been eating my plants.
I have set myself a challenge this year to read through the Bible in Spanish. It is doing me good for at least three reasons.
One, I am encouraged that I can actually read and understand the Bible in Spanish these days; currently ploughing towards the end of Leviticus at the moment.
Two, it is a good source of new vocabulary; my latest word is “degollar”, which means “slaughter” and appears a lot of times in Leviticus. Unfortunately I haven’t yet found a use for it in my every day life.
Three, it makes me approach the text afresh, and read it properly as if for the first time, so I am seeing things that I hadn’t seen before. Like all the verses in Leviticus 15 about sex and ceremonial uncleanness and washing with water. Call me un-devout, but my first thought was “imagine knowing which days your neighbours have sex on according to who has got their washing hanging out”.
A certain pastor; “Servanthood is a position of leadership and authority”. And there was I thinking it was the other way around. Apparently, or so his exegesis went, there are two levels of servanthood. One is anyone who is a Christian, but they don’t actually have to do anything to be given this title, that’s just another word used to describe Christians. The upper tier of servanthood describes people who have been given leadership roles in the church. So you can be a servant of God, and it doesn’t mean anything and you don’t have to do anything, or you can be a servant of the church and that means that you have a special position of leadership and authority.
A certain mission partner; “I don’t care if Walmart is inethical, it’s cheap and they have peanut butter”. Must have read the manual on servanthood written by the above guy I guess. In the mission quite a few of us are involved in projects related to poverty reduction, community programmes, wealth creation projects that kind of thing. A project is going to change the lives of how many people? Ten? Twenty if we’re lucky? Compared to how many people we are actively maintaining in situations of injustice through our every day buying decisions? Hundreds? Thousands? It’s often a decision of time, lack of it, but the irony is that if we really had to choose one or the other, we would do better devoting less time to our little project (rescuing babies out of the river) and more time to making our own buying decisions more carefully (asking who’s throwing them in in the first place).
A certain husband of mine; “God must really hate Sundays”.
There’s no answer to that.