Part of our Fellowship’s zoom candle light carols night, this was our fam’s medley of old carols and new harmonies improvised; wishing you a blessed day today and always; may the Lord of Light, Peace, Joy & true Love fill your days with His Song, all of now and the days to follow, stay precious!
Month: Dec 2020
The Gift of Giving!
I got one of the dearest surprise Christmas presents I’ve ever received: Lil Marijs! – a baby sheep in soft fur, oh the child in me came out to play. Marijs, from a literal far away country, is a gift from a generous hearted person who did not let a deadly viral stop her – am surprised silly how her Lil Marijs makes me unselfconscious dizzy happy.
I’ve always fussed over our childrens’ toys- their soft long ears and tails. Yesterday our second daughter tells me lovingly that I didn’t need to talk to her via Elle her elephant, or insist she puts socks back in via Turta, or make Purple(bear) remind her about her bed covers…I ask her why I’m this way, she says, “Ma, because you’re still a child…”
I loved the way those words settled in my ears; the way they pulled at my opinionated bones to rise and shine. How was I to know that today at 5pm there’d be a delivery of Marijs: a Reminder to regroup my inners.
Marijs‘ cross border Arrival @ a time of teeth chattering International misery is a thing to ponder at. Don’t tell me its just a child’s toy: this things Delivery is of the kingdom of the God of Impossibilities. Here one is Shepherded into a Place reserved for those who dare to be baffled
yeah, stare at how we could stare at where Joy and Peace and Mercy and Purity kiss each other,
touch the impossibly melting softness of human kindness, this quality that did NOT birth off the devil who destroys, accuses, lies,steals,kills…hates.
This quality births off the gentle lowly Manger, where Love came down soft one tender night: a Surprise Visitor that still loves like none I know can….
Marij is a 2020 Reminder of Him and how He moves us to Gift each other this Giving, of everything opposed to evil, of everything born of God, in the humility of a manger,
The Hush of That grabs me by the jaw and asks me to lay off grown up protocol. This is a time to peer through the dark glass and see
That the Giver of Gifts isn’t dead; He has mysterious ways of reviving our real selves no matter the viral forecast.
We are born with the constant hunger for reality; shut your eyes, feel that pulse, it was there when we took our first breath and walk and words. But we gave ourselves permit to retire into Doubt; Faith Hope & Love were for the ladies in the prayer circle who knitted socks for babies of refugees. Not Us. We were grown ups with toothpicks in our brain just in case we bit back into old ways. Faith was for Medieval mystics. Not for the Renaiisanced. We walked the Moon, we fed graves, we became the Machine that fed the beast in us. An earth that cud chewed Itself, ouch. That bunch of words hurts to just write it. Or read it.
Marijs makes me want to stare at the possibility of being free of doubt that all will be well, and that there will be peace on earth,
stare at the act of prayer that began me as a child; I prayed for Dan the tall boy with a hole in his heart, and he went on like Deep, the paraplegic 30 yearold who took me for rides in his chair he drove like a maniac: Dan & Deep had the manners of people who knew who they were and where they were headed, it was to God. These were real people who impacted me much as a child. Dan left me a book of Bible verses he cut from Calenders. Deep gave me a box of Legos I loved and gave to a tiny boy called Deepak – he had a pony fringe and worried eyes but when he smiled he grinned 360 degrees.
All this I revisited after Marijs came home to me a few hours ago from a country across my Northern border and am staring at how the Gift of Giving can provoke, promote Life: the kind that makes us kind in the purest sense.
Messenger of Peace
We are all bells aren’t we? Every Lil whisper and word or sigh or silence saying so many things : good tidings or not, invites to this and that, to talk, or sing. We are all carols aren’t we? Tellers of stories and state; we choose the rhymes, the way with words, we are messengers of Peace, or of other things.
The State of Maya-Mai’s safety
Maya Mai my baker friend has fewer cakes to bake this year- there’s not that many people around she says maybe we’re all feeling safer with home made breads, maybe she should price down her bakes she asks?
Maybe smaller cakes ….maybe she should sell tomato pickles,
There’s not that many people outdoors this year, & how dyou sanitise icing –
Maybe I should sell sanitizers, but that’s not my area of gifting, she laughs
my friend Maya Mai has the face of a waiting child, for gifts she knows she will miraculously receive end of day, she fills with light like dawn after midnight,
I love how she is when thinking on miracles: its all she has she says, not her thoughts, but her miracles. Her first child was born that way, her second and her third. And her husband – he was healed of his cough, the jobs he lost and found; how they built this two- roomed house, with all its blessings she counts them on the knuckles of her small lined hands, and in the bones of her toes ….
one time she counted them on beads she wears on her neck, all her miracles, one by one.
Last evening she said she ran out of beads, to count her miracles on. She pulled out old shells she had as a child running in the beach every dawn in the pockets of her shirt, her skirt held so she could hold her treasure without spilling it in the sand slope back home ..
my friend Maya still has those little and large shells, hump backed curled , spiraling cockels, baby conch, she hangs in rows between corridor and kitchen, for counting miracles she’s received even as tailor of her children’s clothes – hand me downs that need hems taken up or down,
Her children are 14, 12 , 10; her husband went to heaven one Tuesday on the 11th , 8 months ago,
her lips move with tears in them; if I’m looking for shadows in the valley of fear, they are not there, cuz it seems like Maya Mai my friend the baker woman talks with angels around the curtain of shells between her corridor and the oven,
counting every last blessing, the stack of clothes clips she found in a cardboard box , the new shoes her youngest child received as reward for walking a neighbors pet dog; for dew that falls in potted rose plant, and for hot water in her cold tap this morning that fell like kisses from heaven
in her face,
that shines like the sun. I’m trying hard not to stare – she counting miracles, and not knowing how to sell cakes baked last night, she giving them to me for my family and not taking a ruppee, insisting, I take home too, her tomato pickle no one may buy, that pickle red and warm like the sunlight in her eyes, as they dance with satisfaction.
I give her my well- wrapped little packet of blue silk blouse and sari, I’ve not worn it once! She opens it like I’ve given her acres of blue sky, unfolds it like stories to consume, drapes it on one thin boney shoulder, so fragile – its blades snap each time she raises her arm, she’s wound the sari ’round her waist, the size of the palm of my hand,
she winds it round her 5 feet frame, then stands 10 feet tall in corridor between her stove and miracles exploding in her eyes like stars o’er Bethlehem. I’m speechless I’m staring wide open. This is how beauty looks, this is how beauty prays, its face unafraid, like a sky with no night. I’m trembling shaken
wishing I’d got her somethings new, my blouse a size too large but Maya Mai clucks her tongue inside her chin, she’s a seamstress! She can take my blouse an inch in,
nah what’s matching thread? Yes,she has a stack of threads of white from old hems,
she’s bunched the sari in the waist of her saggy pajamas. “Don’t laugh,” Maya Mai cries for joy, pleats of sari tripping her arthritic feet with spurs in left foot, she swings on her right, the shirt beneath her silk a gaudy white, gaudy with turmeric oil stains from the pickles she just made
I’m not afraid , she says, and I can tell, oh I can. She’s full of confidence, its a fire. It wraps her pickles, o’er brown paper from her child’s old text book from last year. A thousand questions crowd the space in my throat and behind my teeth but what can speak in the presence of defeat of fear? This thing is bigger than David’s Goliath, this state of Maya Mai’s safety is no lie, it is that sword of Goliath taking off his own head, it is the wall of Jericho crashing down itself, it is Daniels lions purring in that hungry den that could’ve ripped him before he fell in, it is the fact of the Red sea spilling sideways in obedience, it is the Rod of Moses demolishing Pharoahs serpents;
it is that secret place of the shadow of the most high, abiding in the presence of the Almighty,
it is one tiny baby against all of Herod’s men, it is the blaze of that Star over a Manger an’
It is the God of my friend Maya Mai, her leaning on Him, turmeric oil stains on her shirt beneath my blue silk blouse, one I never wore because it was for this woman with the acres of heaven in her eyes.
I want to hold her hand say thank you but how do you shake hands with a miracle? How d’you hold a star, how dyou embrace a woman Daniel, how touch a Moses’ rod that swiped out Pharaohs serpents …. how d’you pick up the pieces of a broken Jericho wall , how d’you keep account,
except count them one by one,in the knuckles of your fist, in the bones of your toes …
I want to go home and be Maya Mai, she walks me to her low door put together with thermocol and cardboard and a red ribbon from Christmases few years ago, and I’ve not seen the joy in her face in any place else, its a wreath of peace
from the God of Christmas and Golgotha and The Resurrection, I saw You today Lord, in the face of my friend the baker woman.
Hidden, in His quiver, you thought you were forgotten. You’re there for that one choice moment, polished chosen arrow;
time & tide sifted, ground, broke you – seasoned your edge- today you think you live in the shadow of others; ha, know this, you are one set apart,
…for a Time such as this, for a day in a thousand, for a task you alone can do. He knows you by name, you are Designer-ware, made for specificity. You are needed, blest, crucial important, you mayn’t see it Lil arrow,
you are deadly to the foe, deadly to the very thing trying to destroy you. It is time to go out, fearless. You are a force to reckon with, a Season all your own. Go on polished arrow, fly in His skies, shine!
Pray in the Stars
Something that began in a dawn:
…before the day lends you her voice, sing in the silent beams of dawn, lean yourself on the face of light as it breaks the dark,
oh burrow your heart in true Light’s ceaseless pressure, shifting shade, pulsing throbbing warming cold cold night.
Pray in His heart, yeah the ‘oceans rage and the peoples imagine a vain thing’, as clay returns to clay and dust to dust,
Hush in the hour as Dawn begins
hide in the Arms of Prayer, hold It against your soul: here no greed for power, no need for self arrest your heart: here oh here, begin,
where no foot of pride hides in prophecies of doom, where no angel weeps but for the joy of Heaven, and no anthem of ‘self’ rules-
ach! None but His:
Who’s Breath breathes for me&you: born to Cross hell with Him, here arrest restlessness, keel, kneel, pray in the first light of Heaven that with bated breath waits,
here, before it is too late, pray my soul in His heart.
That summer 40 days in the Red sea
Rest, lean, pray
Lift your eyes to the sills of heaven, watch what happens when you pray. When the heart stills its noise and the mind rests with the pulse of God. How often I have not done that, amazes! The power of disbelief stuns me, its incredible power to hold us back from the greatest power ever given to humanity: the ability to talk to God.
Journey to the Manger
2021 years down, we still seek and find Him in places stripped of material thrones. 2021 years, wisemen still seek the Christ and find Him.
December 2020: Startled by Grace.
Did not have one nice thing to say on my blog and then I see this Beauty from Instagrammer Louise_ness whose lens capture of blossom in hedge and porcelain made me want to post some! She is gracious. I say Thankyou thinking of her silver birch wreath ’round papier mâché deer, and get a hearted reply,
sure there are people that are kind to strangers, but after a year of dodging viruses in waves, oh sanitising each other to insane levels, I’m blessed to look at Louise_ness’s last roses of summer,
and am suddenly startled by Grace.
Her deer is made from trees (paper), the roses, foliage like frosted dew crystallising everyday colors and yes, it makes me want to cry for beauty we know we have if we will tolerate each others’ Lil spaces in our spaces, like Louise_ness’s visiting spider who she let be in the picture without destroying him. Aye, Grace.
Another friend and I got chatting today. One hour down the conversation, we agree that the greatest gift humans could give each other is Mercy: another word drenched in attributes we all know we must know and give and be.
Mercy & Grace. Two words our news men maynt have thought of much as they reeled out reports of this & that, this year: two words that sit in my ears tonight, like earrings too expensive to not be heavy. Grace, Mercy. Just to think on, feels heavy. Mercy for those who need it, and need it bad, or probably do not deserve it, thats Grace.
Where’s this Post going? What is December going to be like?
Will Mona Mayi dish out Christmas catering like they always did? Will we all major on Christmas/ new year ensembles, will we host another papier star? Will Susa the Physician call in all her colleagues and street vendors to high tea in her villa with mango trees lit up like Christmas evergreens ? Will everyone have rice and gravy, blankets and candy, @Christmas party- give aways to footpath people off St.Marks’?
It hurts to ask some questions : but I’m thinking how Grace looks on any given day, or Mercy.
Another 31 days and 2021 will be here, with all her engines gunning for the next 365!
This December I’m praying we will give each other space to be accepted and loved as Christ of Christmas did. Uncle Chandu hated that word Christmas. Said it wasn’t in the Bible. No one disputed that, they just ignored his mutters and gave him a good new dhoti and colorful shirt. By Christmas eve he was a melting pot of love and the Nativity, too.
Look at Grace long enough, and there will be the scents of summer all through anything ahead. There will be acts of mercy, and they will wreath your front door with colors like stashed sunlight for cold hearts. After all is said and done, and we are bone weary for trying to make peace not war, we perhaps can rest in the fact that we are loved by the God of Grace, ay e’en be startled by the Grace of God.
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