So where's the snow?

Muddling through in Austria; God, life and a small black dog


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The power of words

One of the recent teachings of Andrew Wommack has been on the power of faith filled words, I’ll put a link below. This is something I’d taken on especially when recently praying for my new job and through it had one of my Duh moments!

It’s quite simply this. I’d thought that when saying these words I’d have to add real depth of feeling, as if forcing them to be effective by my self-will and how much energy I put into them.  As if my effort would make them be powerful.  WRONG!  The words themselves have their own power and faith is released in words.  Sometimes if I’m struggling with something, I don’t have the energy, and I just say, Help me.  Or when rebuking some stupid thought or forgiving someone, or praying for something important.  I just say the words, gently, the saying of them has the power, it’s not on my effort in saying them.  It works. Its the power of the Holy spirit, not me!  Its faith not works.  Am I making sense?

http://www.awmi.net/extra/audio/1075


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Cobwebs

Not a cobweb

As I’ve said we’ve just been clearing out the flat a bit because of the arrival of a new three piece suite – the first we’ve ever bought. Thanks God for your blessings!  Anyway, I found behind some of the pictures and in the corners, cobwebs beginning to grow. It reminded me of when we were clearing Mum’s house when she died.  In the cupboards the cobwebs we found were dark brown, I suppose due to the smoke and the dogs. It felt to me like they were like some sort of evil that clung to her, although she cleaned her house it was never clean, if you see what I mean. Like something creeping around the edges of her life.  She’d had a difficult life in many ways  but had fed on her own bitterness and anger.   So it was a bit like sin always hovering around us in temptation and dark thoughts.  Yet as a Christian I have a spiritual broom that sweeps them away without any effort, if only Mum could have seen that.


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The Renewed Mind

Poor marrow!

This simply means getting your nose down in the Bible and reading it, assimilating what it says and mediating on it.  Some things have puzzled me so much that I’ve let them go around in my head until ‘I got it’ to quote Joyce Meyer!  The Holy Spirit helps us, and Andrew Wommack also says praying in tongues while you do it helps a lot – I’ve tried but find it difficult to concentrate , no doubt needs practise.

 Ok, so then how about God’s will in our lives?  Well with these two steps in motion we can begin to test God’s perfect will.  I’m not going to repeat all the examples in the teaching, you must listen to it yourself. Suffice to say that the outcome is what is God’s will becomes yours.  In our own lives, it was this overwhelming desire to come and live in Austria, for me to work at the Fortune Centre where I’ve been most of my life terrified by disabled people.  This also means that this fear that folks have that they will be sent to the stereotypical mud hut in Africa because it’s what they will hate the most is null and void, God’ s love and will for their lives becomes their’s too and as in my own life.

 Yet it is so easy to get the idea of God’s will and go and blow it as Moses did, when he killed the Israelite and had to spend time in the desert repenting and learning from it.  We put our own timing on things in our haste to get going.  The way our house sold two weeks after we found this place is not man’s timing, its Gods, and I feel confident that we didn’t blunder.  I’ve been dogged with a sense of being on the wrong path so much but as I’ve listened, I’ve seen again his hand not mine in all this = phew!

 Not everyone will be called to be Ministers or preachers, there are other ways.  In some ways it might even be totally irrelevant as to what you do, as in work wise and living if you are maybe witnessing to a neighbour or helping someone.  And even then, it’s not our actions he’s looking for but US.

 Lastly, and what was most soothing to me, again with the example of Moses, is that its never too late to make a course correction if we swerve off the path, King David was God’s second choice after Saul and look what he did.  God will honour our honesty seeking and following a path, but he cant do anything unless we actually move and do something, then he can show us the co-ordinates to go on.


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The Living Sacrifice

Weird clouds as the storm departed

This is a repeat of an earlier blog series as I’ve just increased where the Blog appears.

Living Sacrifice – what a mouthful and what a daunting expression this is, especially to someone not really knowing the Bible. There is the picture of something being slain on an altar which is horrible and as Andrew Wommack says, the trouble with a living sacrifice it keeps on getting off the altar.

This expression is found in Romans 12, 1 -2 and a lot of preachers make a lot of this, I quote below from the NIV;

‘1. Therefore, I urge you brothers, in view of God’s mercy , to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God – this is your spiritual act of worship. 2. Do not confirm any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.  Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is –his good, pleasing and perfect will’

The series then unpicked this statement, and to be a LS, is basically come to the end of your self.  And I have so done this!  God’s allowed me to follow my own desires in my writing, my degree work, although he showed me his purpose in working at the Fortune centre.  Here I’ve learnt patience, about my arrogance, my low self esteem, and the commensurate high sense of self importance, I’ve learnt how to clean bogs and be the invisible member of a team (well nearly).  I have this sense that there is nothing left but God, and I’ve made him my last option as I’ve slowly built a spiritual wall around myself, which I can see neither over or round.  I would counter those who would say that God has broken me – for I am not broken, I am his beloved and he has shown me these things in a way through my spirit so that I’ve come to recognise them and pray against them and learn, even though at times I’ve let them run while still being aware of them.  He’s let me discern and I feel has said that he made me, some of these things are damage and some things – like my love of control are not necessarily bad if used in the right way. I am at the end of myself, I lay myself on that altar and say I’m yours.  Do with me as you will, no holds barred. I know there are times when I’ll try to crawl off, as this self of  body  and soul (my thinking) which lives in the present time and space rears its physical needs, desires, cravings and will against that of God spirit of God who lives inside me, but I know I just have to climb back on board.  Its not a bloody place. When I get what is called a ‘Flesh flash’ of me wanting to do things for me, the Spirit will help me deal with it. As the series went on, more and more insights came to me and at last I’ve begun to get on the next stage.  I laid down my blog writing as a symptom of self, but I believe he’s given back to me this burning desire to share with people in this way through words so here I am.


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Healthy Lungau?

More from the LungauVolkskultur fest (LVKF), blog to follow!

Sometimes it amazes me how people are cared for here.  I went to visit Paggy the other day and took him his prescription to find him with a huge box of medicines and a shiny box of daily doses on the table.  He told me that a woman comes weekly and sets it up.  later I visited the other neighbours and she was doing there and later was at the other neighbours what care, and it means lonely people get contact each week.  Nice!

When we were first here, having worked with disabled people, I couldn’t help notice how many there were with what I’d call slight birth defects – such as a limp.  Then there are obvious stroke victims who are quite young.  Then as we became aware of the diet here.  Drinking and smoking without any apparent teaching on the dangers – and look at how beer is a part of life.  When Dave worked at the builders they had a beer dispenser in the rest room, and when I was on the Job seekers course, there was beer on sale. The alcoholics were thrilled and were on their first by 8.30 in the morning.  They all think me nuts when I moan at the Burg at having to sit in a smoke filled room….the smoking ban was introduced there this year under much complaining from the staff, I imagine that by October the smokes will have bronchitis and flu from having to smoke in the Hof!!!  They din’t like it when I luaghed at them! You don’t see the alkies on the streets like in GB and most of the local events I’ve never seen anyone binge drinking etc, but we don’t go to the events for the young uns so I can’t say!

And the diet!  sausages in so many form, cheeses of all sorts. (Ok so I gripe a bit having hugh cholesterol and being unable to indulge).  plenty of healthy bread and the ubiquitous semmel- white bread rols that atste and smell like heaven when fresh.  You see kids being given a semmel as a snack – better than sweets?  Yet, they eat loads of salad and fesh veg, make loads of their own jam and in the autumn a lost of places have their own meat in a calf or pig slaughetered on the place.


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Oh no, not an Erna Blog……….

More Burg in the snow

As I write its only 3 and a half weeks till the end of the season at the Burg. I’ve moved on so much in the last few weeks and gone backwards too!  On one shift with Erna, she was just so completely mad that I lost all respect for her.  She’d been told we’d cleaned the Chapel the previous day but insisted on going in and sweeping.  When I challenged her, she said everything was so dirty, she had to do it, but 30 seconds later came out.  She even re-swept some stairs Michaela had just done, she must have realised she’ done them.   This was the point she ceased to matter to me. In respecting her as a co-worker, who was senior to me, it had to be my fault when something was amiss.  Now I don’t value her opinion, I feel nothing about her, the past is forgiven and forgotten, after all the pain she has caused me this season, it’s over.

The real end came when one day she exploded in fury at us in the shower rooms.  We hadn’t realised some bar on the shower door could be raised, and so was dirty underneath.  I don’t know what you do all day, its only me who can clean, just one more thing and I’ll go to Rosie (the Head cook and her mate, our boss actually is Helmuth!) she screamed more in dialect I didn’t get.  I’ve never seen Michaela so upset, she was all for leaving, but she decided to hang on till the end of the season.  So now, its me working with Erna while Michaela absents herself, she wont speak to Erna, and you know, I don’t mind the situation!  I speak to Erna when I need to ask something, otherwise we work in silence.  I think the penny has dropped that she has shouted at us once too often.  Now I’m the one in the middle!

Both Michaela and I are leaving, enough is enough.  I’ve prayed that if I’m wrong, to have some message/knowledge from God and similarly if I should apply for the job of ‘Burgrat’ or manager at the Burg.  So far nothing either way, except more attacks of the unexpected, unexplained sadness which hits me sometimes, whose cause I cannot pinpoint – or maybe it is that I should stay.  I pray on…..

The other day, someone spilt candle wax all over the Rittersaal floor, which on the old wood just seeped in and solidified.  I think maybe the solution is to use an iron  to reheat the wax  through newspaper which will absorb it. Of course, I got the ‘look’ when I said so.  Erna consulted the all-wise Rosie who said use bleach and soda.  Result?  Right in the middle of the Saal is a huge patch of lighter coloured wood with blotches of wax in it, oh I feel sooooo smug!