So where's the snow?

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


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I get so sick of Joyce Meyer……

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Everytime we watch her on TV, or we read one of her books, ZAP! It’s as if she’s speaking right to me, pointing things out through the Holy Spirit, and sometimes, I just wish she would leave me alone!!!!!!

We’ve been studying  Power Thoughts in our Housegroup, and on the section ‘I will not live in fear’ I got zapped again on a small section but which the Holy Spirit has since been teaching me more deeply, but like so many things he’s pointed out to me, (such as why I can’t cope with friends who age)  I get to the realization of its effect on my life but don’t know what to do about it, or how I/He will resolve it.

Approval Addiction is a form of fear.  I didn’t have a father around and its lead me to seek approval, and even put on pedestals men in authority around me, mostly pastors and ministers.  I want their approval. It hurt me so much to be fatherless, but a few years ago, by chance I found out that he had been around after my birth, so he must have held me as a babe, that is a huge comfort, maybe I need to work on that. As Joyce says, I’m trying to get the approval of these men in replacement for my missing father. Its only with these figures this exists. It explains why I cannot relate to God as a Father, all I can think is that he will abandon me, which is directly in the face of all that I read and believe is true in the Bible. I dislike praying to God the Father intensely. I have no trust for such a figure. I would like to see an A-sexual parent/leader, (not feminine) , but it’s not biblical.

Am I afraid of personality types? Increasingly as I grow older, I’m scared of men especially if they have been drinking or are in a group I’ve no idea what all that is about. I’m becoming more and more private and Dave says Prudish compared to when I was younger.

Now for the biggest zap. In looking after our holiday houses, we had a bit of a blip with a new one. I didn’t check that the heating had come on  when I turned the electricity on and  then, when I did, thought I’d switched it off. It was a storage heater and would take a while to cool. I had let myself get in a state of rush and panic as I wasn’t sure when the guests would arrive, it took me ten minutes to change a hoover bag as I was in such a state, I just wasn’t thinking as I looked in the fuse box.

The guests arrived during the heatwave, and they found the flat just a tad hot. I went over and switched off everything I could, but the heater still needed time to cool. They were Italian and we had to communicate via google to understand each other. I should have checked, though Dave said the owner should have turned it off as he had the others. Eventually it cooled.

I always want everything right and correct and I try to take responsibility when maybe I’m not (eg car accident)- I drive Dave mad when I correct him in conversation and I really need grace to keep my mouth shut and realise its not important if something is wrong. It’s why I hate failure or mistakes why because it causes withdrawal of approval when you get something wrong -arrgggggghhhhh!

Then we had some new guests at another house, and I went over and had a lovely chat with them, told them all about the area, what there was to do, and we saw them at the end of the week when we went to fix a blown fuse. It then came to me, I love doing this, because I have complete approval from people at such a time, they are happy, and pleased with all I say. Then they mentioned one of our friends had cycled past and given them some ideas I hadn’t, and I was SO cross, how dare he  interfere and make me feel I’d done a bad job, well he can’t take over the job with the messed up weekends, cleaning and ironing.  I even had this all through my head, keeping me awake in the night, till Holy Spirit pointed out, this guy was fast asleep in his bed with out an idea of what I was thinking! It came back again during Church and I really had to make an effort to let it go, it’s just him being him. Forgive.

It’s all about approval. I’m going to buy Joyce’s book to help me. I can renew my mind but I need practical help with all this. I also realised that I slip all the time. If I had asked God to help me with the hoover bag, with sorting the heating, each thing in each day, maybe things would have been different. I’m such a twit. Jabbering him in the morning then ignoring him, doing it all in my own strength. I’m now trying to blither on at him, ask him for help all the time, so I don’t screw up so much – oh crumbs, is that another form of fear?

Then in the same Church service, a Dutch couple came along, they were on holiday. They work for the Evangelical Alliance in Prague, Church planting and outreach.. We had a huge chat (in English, I did apologise) and I hope to hear from them when they are home. God does use the damaged of the world, and I’m so glad, cos its and uphill climb with me!


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Enjoying Life

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One thing I can’t put in these posts is the sound. At the moment, the Blackbirds are singing their wonderful, liquid song, its such a wonderful backdrop to life. We missed the song thrushes this year as it snowed in May and they cleared off. The Martins and Swallows are all around me as I walk in the mornings.

Life has a new pace. Maybe because I’m getting a little fitter and a little lighter with the dog walking, I find that I can do so much more in life without being poleaxed with tiredness. Yes, bedtime can be a bit earlier, but I’m usually up by 7, and if I need the car, I take Dave to the Burg, then Swingle and I go walkies. Back here, its clear up whatever chaos she’s made, all the usual, my quiet time, and if I’m lucky a time to write and paint.

I collect Dave then often we’re off to do someone’s garden or play in our own. Meals on Wheels makes the morning short, and I really enjoy the days when I can just stay at home. There’s numerous painting jobs to be done around the house, but Oh dear, its raining!

I should feel guilty about being at home, but I don’t. I have a new friendship which I’m treasuring, and an old one renewed. I have four people to teach English too, all the aforesaid meals duties, though that’s only once a month, a busy time with changeovers on the holiday houses. And you know who and a contract to teach in October, just about the time Dave finishes at the Burg.

Then on top of this, we’ve been studying Power thoughts by Joyce Meyer. It’s transforming us, the biggest lesson being not to take offence, which we do so much with our bickering. My cup is full to overflowing,Thanks Lord!


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Disabled bloke healed by pool!!

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Ok, so you’re all thinking thats a really lame way to get me to read your blog!!!!

John 5, v 1 – 14

This is one of the readings that Joyce Meyer uses, showing how we sometimes wallow in self pity.  After all the guy had had 38 years to organize someone to help him into the pool.  She so ably speaks in the whining voice of helplessness. I think Jesus also had a twinkle in his eye, because this was another Sabbath healing and all through the gospels he seems to do as many as possible just to annoy the Jewish establishment!

This one of the passages where you have to read carefully, to understand why Jesus seems so unfair in rebuking him and telling him not to sin.  This was maybe  because  Jews of the time equated illness with sinning, so this would have made sense to this bloke (see following blog!) I guess also that the man was so excitied and overwhlemed that he could get up, he just didn’t see Jesus clearly or see him go. When he spoke to the Jews, he is honest, he doesn’t lie becasue he genuinely didn’t grasp who and what had happened. How often do we have something happen in our lives as a result of prayer or a blessing and are so caught up in it, we don’t realise where it came from and we forget to be thankfull for it?  But our God is a God of second chances as the bloke went back and explained who it was, and we must think he trotted off to the happy ever after.   I often wonder of the stories of the people who are healed in the Bible, what happened in their new lives after Jesus had gone.

Was Jesus saying sin would make the illness come back again?  Andrew Wommack so preaches, when we are healed, it may try to return if we wobble and doubt a little and we have to rebuke illness, taking the authority given us when we became Christians, the power of the living Christ within us –as in moving the mountain!  So in a way, maybe he was saying turn away from the sin of self pity and self absorbtion, you don’t have grounds for it anymore, stay healed as the opposite to self pity is self respect, leaving no room for sin in this area.  This guy  must have been so full of joy! (all this is my interpretation).

One of the things that also worries me is why didn’t Jesus heal all of the people at the Pool?  On reflecting, I’ve come up with several answers.   I know that Luke talks a lot about healing the whole crowd’s illnesses, John seems to look a bit more at the individual cases. Most of the people in the mass healings had made a step towards Jesus, even a little step of a fragile belief.  All the people here were fixed on the healing coming from the water. Jesus had to get this guy’s attention by speaking to him, then despite the complete self pity and even doubt (in my mind) whether he was really looking for healing because he doesnt answer in the affirmative either, Jesus healed him. Of course, he may have been desperate for healing, the words here only have the nuance that the Spirit gives us as we read.  So this shows the power of Jesus, even when we are doubting, mired in our pity, Jesus can heal, we just need to turn our full attention on him. Easy to say this though isnt’ it??!!

From the New International Version

 1 Some time later, Jesus went up to Jerusalem for one of the Jewish festivals. 2 Now there is in Jerusalem near the Sheep Gate a pool, which in Aramaic is called Bethesda[a] and which is surrounded by five covered colonnades. 3 Here a great number of disabled people used to lie—the blind, the lame, the paralyzed. [4] [b] 5 One who was there had been an invalid for thirty-eight years. 6 When Jesus saw him lying there and learned that he had been in this condition for a long time, he asked him, “Do you want to get well?”

   7 “Sir,” the invalid replied, “I have no one to help me into the pool when the water is stirred. While I am trying to get in, someone else goes down ahead of me.”

   8 Then Jesus said to him, “Get up! Pick up your mat and walk.” 9 At once the man was cured; he picked up his mat and walked.

   The day on which this took place was a Sabbath10 and so the Jewish leaders said to the man who had been healed, “It is the Sabbath; the law forbids you to carry your mat.”

   11 But he replied, “The man who made me well said to me, ‘Pick up your mat and walk.’ ”

   12 So they asked him, “Who is this fellow who told you to pick it up and walk?”

   13 The man who was healed had no idea who it was, for Jesus had slipped away into the crowd that was there.

   14 Later Jesus found him at the temple and said to him, “See, you are well again. Stop sinning or something worse may happen to you.” 15 The man went away and told the Jewish leaders that it was Jesus who had made him well.

http://www.biblica.com


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Quiet times

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I’ve been hearing for a long time from Joyce Meyer and Andrew Wommack about the importance of the quiet prayer time in the mornings.  With work and laziness I’ve copped out with the excuse of lack of time and tiredness. I do pray and talk to God a lot while driving but maybe that isn’t the same. It’s gently nagged away at me.  I’ve tried to do a quiet time as a Lent thing and while the extra reading has been interesting, I’ve had one eye on the clock all the time and have been rushing back to the TV feeling its a bit of an onerous, dry duty.  Now I am a one for my own space, and Dave is out of work too, so there is a lack of quietness, he has the radio or tv on all the time and sometimes I just want it quiet.  He claims it covers his tinnitus, but it never goes the other way that I get quiet for my peace of mind, I know, moan, moan, but I have learnt to live with it!

Recently we had a blitz on the spare room, which is actually my favourite room and a little light bulb went on. …..so I ordered things around so that I have a corner with somewhere for the cup of coffee, pen and Bible.   I decided that I’m going to try and be regular about all this –of course easy now I’m not working!  I go in with my cup of coffee, after all Joyce does so, but maybe a dog would be a distraction…..

To my huge surprise I’ve found it a real blessing, I love doing it, of course because I get some  ‘me’ space, but I don’t have a clock and I never look at how long I’ve been.  I think of God and all the things that are going around in my life , asking him questions about the future, thinking things through, praising. Sometimes I read a lot, sometimes a little. I’m always thankful that I’m sitting in my own room, in the warm, in a house I own, what luxury!  It’s not an irksome duty as it once was, it gives me a real sense of peace  and quiet joy. The Holy Spirit is close and I feel rested spiritually through this, and I’m always seeking and knocking at his door for answers about things they seem to be coming through. I’m hooked.


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Freaky Friday

Lovely mountain shot to cheer one up!

Yesterday was one of those days you just wonder what is going to happen next!  Having been a follower of Joyce Meyer and Andrew Wommack, I knew quite early on that I could make the decision about how I handled it!

It began with taking Dave to a new Doctors as he’s been suffering a really bad dose of bronchitis this year, and he needed checking out by the specialist.  Appalling we had to wait all of three days to see her!  So as we arrived, we found the door to the Practise locked, I walked around saw some writing about the Doc on the wall, but needing glasses and being in daft mode, I missed the doorbell.  When I rang the Secretary,I felt so stupid, but we had a laugh about it when I walked embarassedly in.  Dave just needed his medication checking and the Doctor wanted to practise her English, so it was all good.  But of course, there was no train for Dave to catch home, I had to get to work at my Friday Cleaning jobs and there was fog everywhere, so we had the complicated arrangement he’d go home and I’d ring when I needed collecting, then drop him off at home and go on to my next job.

When I arrived, it was to find that I’d made another blunder. In cleaning last time, I’d cleaned the tiles in the bathroom, but had missed in spots where there were flecks where it had dried.  Lecture. So I went into nice mode. She was obviously in a strop, went out the door to walk the dog  without a bye.  So there was I sulking and ranting to myself, then  realised I could choose to get over it, so I did.  Then I had a text from my daughter, nasty wasp sting, the mothering kicks in, but what could I do so far away, frustrating? Finished, I walked down the hill and found a Five Euro note – Thanks God, was that a well done for not acting like a five-year old for once????????

The next jobs were ok, but a bit rushed.  Then I got a phonecall.  Some friends of us are going through a messy divorce, and the wife seems to be creating problems.  The husband wants me to go and witness for him about various things she’s said, which to me don’t seem true.  So I agreed, but knowing at the same time, Dave and I don’t know the whole truth, only they do.  But we have to be here for friends. I was as one would say, ‘bricking it’.  I rang Dave and said you’ve got to come with me, I cant do it alone, and for once he said yes straight away. It wouldn’t be right to turn up in court with this husband without Dave if you see what I mean. I was scared, what could it mean for us here, would it threaten us?  In court, in German, I could get stitched up. All a bit paranoid.  So as I drove back to Tamsweg, again I knew I could let this fear ruin my weekend and my life.  So I tried to rationalise and it came to me, maybe when she hears we’ll testify, she may back down and it’ll come to nothing.  My peace returned.

I then had to meet my boss of all my cleaning jobs.  Its been an issue since I started that while I was contracted for 15 hours, there wasn’t that much work. Maybe my fault, I could have looked for extra jobs, but as far as I felt  able, I’ve been doing these jobs well and I wont lie about the hours. But there is a backlog. End of discussion, I have to work a couple of morning extra a week until Christmas then we’ll be square.  Fine. Funny, I’d had it in the back of the mind that I could do more work – God preparing me?  Of course it wasnt until I was home I remembered on these days, I’d been due to have my part-time dog-arrgggggghhhhhhhh!

So I got home feeling a bit world weary, to ring my best mate here, to find one of her horses had had an attack of colic and the vet was saying he may have to be put down. I’ve been there, my horse, Monty was also prone to it -turned  out it was cancer. Oh, I felt so for her, but she was getting a second opinion, the morning would tell.

I still had to pick up Linda from where she works in the local Bookshop, and as I told her, I kept it all light and stressed how I was thrilled with the Fiver, it was all ok.  Am I growing up at last?????


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‘What a Mess’, her friend and an awful day……….

One of my jobs now includes cleaning the house of the Lady who owns What a Mess, who I usually meet when I clean the Insurance Office in St Michael.  This Afghan is just so typically hound, friendly, bouncy and yet elegant.  She’s got adult her coat so isn’t quite like Frank Muir‘s puppy.  I’ll now call her WAM!  This lady leads a chaotic life as a single Mum of a boy, full-time worker in Insurance (and I know, having worked in it how demanding it is), and she’s into all this stupid numerology and card reading stuff.  So I felt when I was asked to clean her house by my main boss, I could really bless her, give the house a lift and her too.   Apart from the first time she showed me round, I haven’t seen her.

So last week I arrived, and I fully admit I was tired, and so emotions are  bit higher than normal. The two Siamese/Burmese cats were looking indignant by the front door, so I opened the door to let them in and then the inner porch door as one lingered.  To my shock I was greeted by WAM and what I take as a brindled whippet puppy! Cats slunk in, door slammed and I enjoyed being frisked, bounced and slurped on as the dogs greeted me, full gas. I went and sat in the sitting room, of course the puppy shivered as they do, but I cuddled them both and chucked some toys around -bliss.  Then I really knew I had to  work.  I looked around for a note, could I let the dogs in the garden, where was the dog poo cleaning kit?  Nothing.  I had to clear up -I could see WAM looking at the baby’s accident with worry. So in the end I found a plastic sack and left it right by the front door.  It was such fun though, especially as it became obvious that the dogs werent allowed in the bedrooms by the way they leapt on the beds and jumped about, (just like you know who) and all too soon, I was done and gave the two some treats I’d found and slunk away.  I could hear them barking -and hounds don’t bark that much, as I left.

HOW  FLIPPING RUDE! Yes, Joyce, I’d taken offence.  I can only hope there was some huge problem why this woman hadn’t left me a note or rung to explain. If not,as Dave said, remember we’re just slaves here.  It’s the lack of respect, the taking me for granted that I found so bad.  But not only that, it’s the leaving dogs for so long alone in the house.  I had to remove various medicines that the woman had left lying about that the puppy was chewing, there was what just seemed a lack of care.  Not even a newspaper put down. If the silly woman had called me, I could do more if she must leave them in the house. Of course I could have rung her, but I’m nervous speaking on the mobile in German, people speak too quickly, and I would have just been really rude to her.

I wished then I had another doggy person I could talk to about this, but have no real doggy friends in Lungau, I havent spoken to folks in the UK for a while and of course I couldn’t make a phonecall out of the blue so upset.  I wanted to talk to the only person in the world who knows dogs  as I do, Mum.  And she’s dead.  It hit me like a blow to the stomach, grieving for my mum at her doggy best when she wasn’t drinking or depressed.  I grieved for my own dogs, who I’ve given up living in here, in a belief or decision (right or wrong) that I need to keep myself free for the next step in my walk with God.  I so missed my horsey/doggy life that I’ve left  behind.  And I knew I was also jealous of this woman for having two dogs, and I none.  I did talk to Dave, but he’s a man and not a pet fan, he only sort of understood.  I calmed down and finished the days work. I don’t know how I’ll deal this with next week.

I saw the puppy had peed on the bathroom floor, so I left it.