Sunday, 6 May 2012

When you are the moon

The moon is full tonight and it's massive. I'm talking seriously is this some kind of Deep Impact/Day After Tomorrow Jeff Goldblum movie or at least an episode of Mighty Boosh. Heouge. God is so big. Unfathomably. My finite mind can't conceive of it which is radical because I don't want to be able to. If I could that would make God measurable and I rest at night knowing He's not.

So I've been distracted for far too long by things which a) I can't really do anything about and b) probably aren't a problem anyway. Insecurities. What a pile of dung they are. God has told me who I am and I constantly reject it, preferring to believe I'm not enough. Not enough for God, not enough for my family, not enough for my friends and not enough for a partner. And I realise tonight what a steal that is.

These are the things I know I am, things that make me feel like me:

An encourager
An instigator

And the more I dwell inwardly on my insecurities and the things I think I lack, the less I have been those things I used to know I was. The less I encourage and the less positive I've been. Too scared to be foolish. Too concerned to be relaxed. What a thief the enemy is. Fear diminishes in the presence of awakened identities. I read that somewhere.

Know who you are. You are a beloved child of God, forever safe in Him. And be confident in the character He has given you. The more time we spend dwelling on the things we fear might be true about ourselves, the less time and energy we give to wholeheartedly being the things we know are true. I'm tired of being afraid and preoccupied with what may or may not be in my future. My future is now. And I want to spend it having fun with God and helping other people to.

Henri Nouwen - Life of the Beloved

Friday, 2 March 2012

Well that's just swell.

Hey howdy hey Northsiders

Here's some up dizzle from Austrizzle...

Matt came here to push the Pure Parks vision and he's really storming, the guys are doing trips nearly every weekend and taking groms with them. He's also connecting with and organising other teams of people to come and do Pure Parks trips... champion. His blog is here: check out God's hammers.

The shops are always pretty quiet around this time so no big news there, Derek's still taming it keeping them juiced with hardware and as we're fully stocked with clothes I'm trying to learn to say no to reps without feeling guilty. The guys are all doing great jobs in the stores connecting with the locals and giving out more Bibles than the Gideons*

We have the keys for our indoor skatepark! Though the ramps have been delayed coming from the US so more accurately we have the keys to an empty warehouse! Please pray we have no more delays getting the park up and running with installation, insurance and all the setup, it's costing a big ole massive heap of money.

Anika has been connecting with girls at the skatepark which is awesome to see, she's a brilliant slice of Madrid in my day.

Overall One Friday is awesome, everyone is awesome, God is awesome. You knew that.

I'm doing some more artwork and praying God keeps reminding me why I'm doing it and keeps my heart in check. Some exciting stuff in the pipeline although I'm trying not to count my penguins.

And then if you want to talk to Jesus about me...

Over the last year I've started to have an anaphylaxis reaction when I dance and get hot. Sweet awesomeness! My eyes swell up so I look like I've been trying to get an eyelash out using a slice of onion after being told my puppy's dead. Very chameleon chic. A couple of weeks ago I got a bit hectic on the dance floor with Kath out for her hen do and had to spend the night in A&E. She stayed with me... what a beautiful friend she is.

Mr Doc says there's nothing that can be done, just take antihistamine before similar situations (which makes me drowsy) and then take stronger ones at the first sign and then go to hospital if it gets stupid. If you know me then you know what a bummer this is. Not a massive thing in the greater scheme of life but it impacts something I find great freedom in. So of course I welcome prayer about that, I'm praying too, it'll be interesting to see if God tells me it's related to anything else I need to sort out.

Super de duper.

Miss you all, thanks for your prayers and for being my friends!

*probably not as many as the Gideons. But it's a lot.

Go get the fun.

A couple of weeks ago I was asked to talk about our base value Fun at morning worship. Base values are things that we have decided as a YWAM community to prioritise in our lives. Things we commit to doing regardless of the cost. They are: Knowing God, making Him known, being visionary, holiness, communitas and fun. When I first came here to be honest I thought "fun?! Why is that something we need to commit to doing at any cost? I have fun anyway, you don't need to tell me to have fun" and I thought it was a bit lame. Because at that time it was so easy for me to have fun. I had heaps of energy, time and friends. Who doesn't have fun?!

Then I got busy. I took on more responsibility in the shops and was so tired by the time I left work that I didn't have the energy or motivation to get out and do things. All I talked about was work, it filled my brain and my spare time. And I stopped having or being any fun. It sucked. I felt like no one wanted to be around me, that I had forgotten how to have or be fun and I had lost a big part of who God made me to be.

Until I was invited to Zumba. For those unfamiliar, Zumba is a big dance party in a dim room with disco lights masquerading as a fitness class. You're supposed to try to follow this energetic lady bouncing around at the front and the side effect is you get a bit fitter. The main result was I had fun. My gosh this is so much fun for me. For that hour I didn't think about indents and rosters and banking and stockchecks. This was my release and it made such a difference. I began to prioritise it in my schedule and Wednesday became the day I would actually leave work on time.

This was the first time in my life I've had to be intentional about having fun. And the first time I understood how essential it is. Proverbs says that a joyful spirit is health to the body but a crushed spirit dries up the bones. Sorry I think I'm mixing translations there but you get the drift. Fun makes me more relaxed, it helps me to process things, it helps me to let things go. It straight up makes me happier. But sometimes we go through seasons where life isn't fun and opportunities to have fun don't swing past our door. And if that happens to you I'd encourage you to go out of your door and find the fun. It might not be Zumba for you, for some people that's their worst nightmare after that one about being chased by Big Bird. Go and have some of your fun. And if you don't know what your fun is, go and find out. Be intentional. Value it.

Go get the fun!

Kerie, Mallory, Kodan, Bryan and I then made everyone do Zumba. Enforced compulsory fun! Thanks to Claudie for the video.

Thursday, 1 March 2012

Opening fists

How does one go about "letting go" of something that's lodged in one's mind? I've often quizzed God about this one.

It's not as if I can physically drop this out of my hands at Your feet although that would be the most wonderful freedom. I need to let go of it mentally and I want to open my brain fists which are currently squeezing the life out of it. Let my hands go soft and give this to You, hoping that You will do something with it. The thought of letting it go and it falling to the wayside overlooked and ignored is part of what makes my hands clench tighter. What if I let go and that action means it is lost forever? I think I can keep it and try to protect it and nurture it and encourage it in this way and that and perhaps it will grow into something beautiful. Probably not, I've killed so many plants. It really is always better in Your hands.

And perhaps this thing I grasp at is not what You want for me, not intended for me or healthy for me and You'd rather I let go and go on without. I want to trust You and I cling to the hope that that seed of faith will be enough for You to work with. You are forever faithful and although I can't package this thing up and ship it out, I'll choose in a thousand daily ways to offer it to You. Thank You for wanting to take it, my hands are exhausted.

Wednesday, 8 February 2012

Tongue tied.

When I don't feel like I have the right words to encourage
When I don't feel like what support I have to offer is enough
When I don't feel like I'm speaking "spiritually" enough
When I don't feel like I'm totally understanding the situation
When I don't feel like I can relate or be relatable...

I thank God that He is who He has said He is. Encourager, refuge, saviour, King, friend, supporter, protector, peace maker, all knowing, all encompassing, faithful, forgiving, patient, gracious, merciful Father of everyone I know.

Thank you Lord for knowing, loving, understanding, speaking to us and leading us in the midst of all our circumstances. Thank you that it isn't down to me 'cos I would balls it all right up.

Tuesday, 31 January 2012

Moselle Monster x Maths getting out there

I was asked to create some design elements for Moselle's first certified Fairtrade and Organic range of tees. Check it out on my other blog here.

Coolum News ran an article on it last week:

The content about the monsters being from my childhood is completely fabricated, I'm not from Buderim or a street artist but it's a sweet write up and hopefully will help spread the word on Moselle and what they're trying to achieve.

If you would like to know where the monsters are really from, Dan asked me some questions which you can read about on their blog here.

And you can buy from the Monster x Maths range by going here.

And by the by how beautiful is Mallory?! Ooo girl you gorgeous!

Monday, 2 January 2012

D-Rock The House.

This is Derek. He is from Michigan, makes awesome sandwiches and tried to teach me how to eat quicker.

He looks a bit like a hero in this photo and I think I chose it because 2011 was the year he saved my butt. I was enjoying my role in the shops but I was getting close to self destruct. I was viewing ranges for and reporting on and ordering and receiving and distributing all product for the stores plus fulfilling customer requests, trying to populate the online store, make sure the drinks machine was full, the rosta was functioning, doing all the banking... you get the picture. I'm not trying to toot my own horn saying I did all these things, I'm saying I couldn't do all these things. I had a minor break down and Derek was there to listen to me talk about it and Derek was there saying he would help me.

Derek took over taking care of all the hardware in the stores. That's all the skateboards and parts which we sell through quickly and are ever changing, leaving me to focus on the softgoods (shoes, clothes, accessories). For Derek it involves trying to stay on top of things so we don't run out of anything people want as well as keeping an eye on what's coming next so we have the freshest gear. It's hard work, pressured and endless and he's doing it so well. I simply didn't have the time or energy to look into this new longboard brand or that new bushing but he has brought in new products that I hadn't even heard of. He has his finger on the pulse and works really hard and now I don't stay at the warehouse until midnight anymore. "Thank you" doesn't quite cut it.

On top of this, over the last couple of years our weekly BBQ became his regular duty. I'm not sure if it officially was asked of him or if it was something that fell onto his shoulders but his willingness and faithfulness, week after week, buying the food and cooking it and keeping it going has been really incredible and very humbling. He's awesome.

He's in Michigan right now visiting his family and please pray he has a wonderfully refreshing and relaxing time with them. Please also pray for him this year as he looks into his next VISA to stay with One Friday and generally pray God's abundant blessing all over him. Having him as a part of the Boardstore team is a big blessing to me.

Cheers D-Rock!
Your friend Nibs x