So where's the snow?

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


Leave a comment

Bouncing Back

IMG_2808

Swingle and Lea in the woods!

As my regular readers know, I’ve finished my summer job early and am looking at what next. I’m helping Dave with his garden business as he has more employed hours and I’m finding I quite like lawn mowing!! Just shows how God can change your heart! I’m taking over the library in the village and I’m looking at doing the English teaching seriously.

But I’ve felt off track with God for a long time. Letting myself feel so unhappy with the job and not handling it as a Christian should. Felling guilty that I should be asking Dave’s forgiveness for my bad attitude to him at times but unable to do it.  In the wilderness.

Then God started pointing things out to me. Firstly how I had been so lonely last summer and wanted someone to walk the dog with, and he’s gifted me the friendship of Elke who lives down the road and has a puppy who has become a mate of Swingle’s and we walk together. If Dave is too tired at the weekend, I have other people to trot around with. Thanks! I have Jenny, my English friend who lives nearby and thinks like me. Thanks! I have the joy of walking in the early morning and feeling his supernatural reaching though to me in the beauty of this countryside. Thanks. I feel surrounded in friendship like I haven’t done for years! The other day while doing our daily prayers I was just thanking him through his joy he’s given me and not handing it back, but revelling in it and appreciating he never left me, I took a wrong turning. Was my unhappiness in the job him telling me to go rather than my self-will?

But the Church business goes on. I was narked that I was no longer the contact person for the Burg, but I left the Presbyterium and must take the consequences, and maybe it was the right decision. But I was missing the Christian fellowship of church. Then Valli rang me up, we’d have Housegroup there for a while, but after this Christmas, I just had to urge to continue it and let it go. Excuses of work  on the weekend. She told me the story of the recent death of her Father, which I won’t detail, except to say, it has brought her family together in Supernatural healing and re-charged her spiritual batteries. I was honoured to be told the tale, and she’s now ready for the next thing. We were walking the dog before sharing breakfast together. Then God sent Anna, walking her dog along the river bank to us. She is a gifted musician, a full on lady, who was with the group that split up a few years ago. So Valli invited her to breakfast too and we had a wonderful time, Anna prayed and thanked God for this and we sat, ate and chatted in harmony.

I felt surrounded with the Christian fellowship that I’ve been missing for so long, and its makes the homesickness irrelevant (except for my kids!). With the EU vote soon, I so hope that the UK will stay put, I now actually don’t want to leave here! Anna is one of those Spirit filled people gifted with leaking the Holy Spirit when she prays, I need people like her!  I’ve begun to pray that something I say to people will prompt them to ask questions, but asking Holy Spirit to guide me because if I try to engineer it, crash! Also that change will come to these friends that they are interested and open, rebuking what is stopping them asking.

Sadly,I had to leave for meals on wheels, but Anna and Valli are coming to me for breakfast next week. I guess Valli will have told Anna her story. Frauen that Frühstuck!  A new start with no label or conditions. I’m just bouncing!!!!!


Leave a comment

Moving Forward

P1300489

After the Salt Service as I’ve called it, I came back and told Dave all about it, wish he’d been there. But he was minding dogs and hiding behind his excuse that he doesn’t understand everything. I’ll make him go next time so he can talk to the Asylum seekers as they were speaking in English!

The service had me thinking what do we do? Then J Johns was preaching and the simplicity of his Ministry struck me, just do what you can do, and God will do the rest- and the places he’s been led are extra-ordinary. So all I can do at the moment is write this and lead the Housegroup. He went on to talk about how people may have been Christians for 10 years, also may have been to 1000 services, prayed 15000 times but never told anyone about Jesus.  I feel ashamed. Am I so scared of losing the friends I have, but I will never force the issue, but if someone asks, I’ll be right in there!

Anyway, for some time I’ve felt with the Bible group and the Church that we’re just treading water. Maybe this Christmas is time to do something for people in Tamsweg.

I’m very aware of the Asylum seekers, and that I’m a foreigner myself, but how many locals get missed under the influx? I was talking to someone about a lady on the Meals On Wheels run, who is in her 80s and lives with her disabled daughter. They potter on in a symbiosis, to take them apart would kill them I’m sure, well meaning interference can be so damaging. She rarely remembers what day the food is coming but she has cooked. But could we bless them in some way?

Then I though of Carol Singing and then remembered I can’t sing. I’ll put this to the Housegroup when we meet again. We can’t go on meeting and chatting and not moving on spiritually, I don’t want to spend me Christian life on milk and water…….

I will regain my joy of working with Dave and not get grumpy when he uses his lecturing voice, he’s often right, I should tell him! I need to listen to the Holy Spirit and be able to discern his voice. He started training me when I was dog walking. JUst go to the bridge, but I went on, dog ate something yucky and threw up over the sofa, another time went on, not knowing sheep were there – much barking. And all the warnings before the accident.

I do worry about my kids. I let them go, I miss them so much, but they must have their lives. And who knows, in ten years we could be back in the UK or they could be here, I must think more long-term. Things change, people and situation. I must live with the missing them in the present.


2 Comments

An Extra-ordinary Church Service

DSCN2270

Last Sunday morning,  I was feeling a little sad, as Linda and I were sitting alone in the Chapel, feeling that no one was coming to the service and we’d have to go home.  Then Heidi arrived in a rush having been stuck behind a bus all the way from Murau! Everyone else followed just after 10 o’clock, just like the UK services! What a relief!

We then had a wonderful service, which blew me away, the sermon I’ll write about in another post.

The Professor had brought three of the asylum seekers, heavens knows what they thought as it wasn’t a traditional service. And of course, we (me) brand the seekers with a dismissive brush but these three blokes had me interested, they were Christians from Iran,  I wondered where their families are.

All this was just after I had been wingeing to Dave about how I missed the UK services, with good music, praise and a tangible feeling of the Holy Spirit! Everything was there and what bowled me over was this was something Heidi had prepared, God working in advance! But maybe the preparation was for the Asylum seekers, not me!!!!

I apologized to Holy Spirit if I was causing this feeling of overwhelming sadness,  by my attitude and asked him to forgive me. I’ve had this as a premonition before but wasn’t so in this case, it was my attitude that stank.  In fact for a few days, I’d been waking with a oh no, I’ve got this to do, gloom, gloom and realised this was from you know who and rebuked it!

The songs, one of which was Amazing Grace were all known to me, even if we sang in German, and I welled up with tears as I do when I’m praising/feeling God in a service. I’m not saying that I rely on these emotions to experience God, but I more open to him when the songs move me.

I haven’t felt so much love around me for a long time, I felt healed and full, that I’m back. The Car accident took me on a journey away from his presence because of the injury in my spirit. I knew I was wandering away and Dave chided me for walking the dog when Andrew Wommack is on TV – I will try to take some podcasts when dog walking but I need to hear around me. But I’m studying again, having never relinquished the two chapters a day, I’m reading about the Galatians and its like I’ve never read it before.

My passion is back.


Leave a comment

Easter

IMG_1065

As you hide the Easter eggs, prepare a huge meal, meet with the family, pause for a minute and try and remember just why we are having this holiday. I bet less than 50% of you will mutter something about a cross and Jesus but get no further. Such a Shame. If you delved in just a little, maybe you would find why this day is so special and can mean so much to you. No religion, no rules, no years of misinterpretation. Read the gospel of Mark like a book and maybe you’ll begin to get an inkling! Blessings on this day of days!


Leave a comment

A strange day…….

P1160663

Dave and I have been really praying about our future here in Austria and after the events of the past couple of days, I’m begining to wonder if things such as the meeting with the Priest and yesterday’s bizarre afternoon are some form of answer!

In the morning, I had a call from our Pastor, saying he’d had a mysterious phone call from a man in English a few weeks ago and he had arranged to meet him at the Burg at Three in the afternoon. He had no idea what it was for, there was something to do with a warzone and he couldn’t ring the bloke back.  He couldn’t attend anyway as he had to teach that afternoon. So Dave came along to ride shotgun in case it was a depressed asylum seeker from the local centre. We prayed before we went in, maybe God did have his hand on it…

I went to reception and met an familiar face from when I worked there who informed me the mystery man was getting married there that afternoon. We went up to the Chapel where we met his parents who sent someone off to find the groom. They were waiting for our Pastor to come and do a Wedding Blessing or Ceremony, – they had been married civilly earlier as you have to do in Austria. My blood ran cold. The poor bloke who looked shell shocked.

So I rang the Pastor who exploded down the phone. I can’t do weddings without the right paperwork, I’ll end up in Prison, this guy should have sent me all the forms. He wouldn’t/couldn’t even come to do a blessing. All I got was a tirade of how nothing was going to happen, he even said at one stage I could do a blessing myself.

More discussions. Dave and I went down the hill to the Priest’s house. He was a surprised as us. He had been rung by the bloke, but as he wasn’t Catholic there was nothing he could do, nor was he even ready to go and give a blessing. He and given the groom our Pastor’s number. Back to square One. Then I rang Heidi who is one of the lay preachers and is a human dynamo. She agreed at once to come and do a blessing but wouldn’t make it till six. The wedding party took it well, and were taking photos and chilling while they waited. We had to leave as we had another appointment but Heidi rang later and said she did a lovely little service in a candle lit chapel, using English and German. Phew.

And our Pastor? Another phone call spewing the same stuff, not a word of Oh B’*§$% I’ve screwed up big time, I didn’t understand. No, Just this cant be done, its not the law I can’t come. Maybe something has happened to him in the past where he cant own up to stuff, I don’t know. But at least Dave and I were there and by God’s Grace it was sorted. The only thing I regret is that the couple lived in the same part of the world as Andrew Wommack and I wanted to ask if they knew of him………


Leave a comment

Game of Life – Book review

Ice muster BB

I know loads of people are hooked on the Game of Thrones books and TV series, but I’ve never got into serial dynastic punch-ups, I even got a bit bogged down with The Lord of the Rings. But I have found a similar book which I’m surprised  hasn’t been made into a TV series, and I’ve read it several times. Sweet start which quickly descends into chaos, storms and floods, inter kingdom punch ups and even some genocide – not really my thing. However, what links this all together is the story of a search for one man that goes down the generations,  a very wibbly wobbly timey wimey thing.  Each time you think the character is the one, he blows it in some way. There’s loads of supernatural symbols and tales and stories and great special effects, so hippies and tekky freaks are happy.   Finally, right at the end, the right guy gets found (as in all good plots), and he gets a cult following, until the climax when everyone turns on him and he gets murdered in a most vicious way.  But like many of these characters, he comes back again and the book ends on one of these catalytic warning stories but which is also a great tale of hope,  leading into a sequel, as the book shows he’s still around, never in fact left.

Do I need to tell you which book I mean?