Today has been one of those days where God’s Kingdom crashes into earth and my eyes are awakened, my heart is quickened, my mind is sharpened, and my body straightens up as I stand into the freedom–glorious, life-giving freedom (“It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery” as Paul writes in Galatians 5:1; or the LORD “has sent me to proclaim freedom for captives” as Isaiah, and then Jesus, leans into in Isaiah 61:1) that Christ offers.
- I woke up this morning at 3:15am to Chippy, our dog, barking incessantly right outside my door. No one else heard him–thanks, Enemy. I know you’re poking around!
- Fantastic–SUPERB–Lectio Divina led by Oupa (my roomie) and myself on Isaiah 61–Freeing, life-giving, ‘double-portion’ sorts of freedom.
- Matt Redman’s song “You Alone Can Rescue” has been swimming around my heart all day long, since I downloaded it. “Our shame is deeper than the sea…Your grace is deeper still.”
- One of our workers got upset about something I accidentally did this morning–I could have let it wreck my whole day, but instead moved forward with hope and healing, in a spirit of expectancy. Satan is a little (fill in the blank) sometimes.
- Tons of laughter, shared memories, fun, pizza, chips, and chocolate with 23 hospice care workers, myself, Adrienne (helping me shoot photos), and Petunia and Anna (InnerChange nurses) today across from Mabopane Station. These ladies–ahem, MODELS–dressed to kill and we had a blast taking photos of them with their friends and co-workers today in a local park nearby for an upcoming redecoration project. EPIC PHOTOS of incredible servants. One of the most redemptive things I have participated in all year long–spirits were soaring as we simply laughed, let our hair down, stepped out of the grief that these women carry daily as they walk with those dying of HIV/AIDS, pneumonia, and TB, and simply LIVED. Adrienne and I were professional photographers and leaned greatly into our gifts this afternoon in an effort to bless and empower these women by treating them as beautiful models! So, so, so fun! I’m learning that the importance of creating a culture of fun, lightness, and shared community among those who live and work in a culture of death and grief is critical (Curtis Love works with terminally-ill AIDS patients and is beginning to play Bingo with them for a similar reason) to the overall health and longevity of a group of people. We need to enjoy life!
- Powerful time of inner-healing prayer and claiming my freedom in Christ late this afternoon with my coach, Bryan Ward, Colin Crawley (EI Director), and Tony Cermak (my good buddy here). I truly feel like long-standing vows and agreements I had made to live in brokenness, past failure, even sin to some degree were broken and I experienced cleansing, healing, and freedom. Much to say about this, but not in this space…I am now a 29 year-old living as a 29 year-old!
- Shared a fantastic all-Apprentice meal from Sally Morson (EI Intern now living with us at Pangani) this evening with just the Apprentices, and all of a sudden, it felt like all was right again in the world.
- Two fantastic conversations with good friends (and roomies, you know who you are!) tonight on the good ‘ol Facebook…what that site is meant for!
- Trying to fill my thoughts with God again as I head to bed…”When my thoughts were far away, Your love goes further still” (Matt Redman, “You Alone Can Rescue”).
Tonight, I am so glad that I live in Pretoria, South Africa.