by what held us all these years: I’m touched, by the power within us that is greater than fear,
touched by how new leaf and bud appear, relentless of germs & sickness, they pout at my quick disbelief of personal endurance,
Touched, where I am rinsed by storms of cleansing…. I believe you and I and us are more than these days,
dumb founded by my own capacity to be afraid, I’m touched by the power of prayer, gratitude & praise:
This morning it went on and on in my head: the astounding fact, the act of prayer…. its healing ways, no matter how we used to think it didnt work, this morning It touched me, like a Glove, a Mask…. It held us in the secret place of Its hiding, not just me and mine, but you and yours: locked doors, sealed yards, borders, nations, hearts and minds….
May we wash our spirits, with the cleansing power of leaning on the most High. Man is wired to lean, on meds and safety measures: and that’s a sign a good one too…that by ourselves we are not enough. Together with the Leanable-On, we are stronger.
Choose Stronger, dear one, we aren’t alone. There is a Power beyond this,
I was touched by It this morning. Grace, Strength...call it a big word, let’s be touched by the One thing that can save us: The Hands of God that made us and flowers new every morning, I send you these, as Reminders,
Last month I wanted to look closer at this legendary masterpiece of Auguste Rodin’s, and found that it was a Type of Dante’s Poem, gazing at the portals of hell…. am I wrong?
There wasn’t time to dive deeper into that, we’ve all been flung a little further in at a new kind of emo/physical torment with Virus related issues. We’ve never been closer, in this new kind of loneliness, all of us together in a new kind of isolation, we’re like a Shadow of yesterday going into tomorrow, staring at Us all as through a glass, gazing at each other as if we’ve never seen us before, sans all the action. It’s a new kind of day. We’re unafraid of words we used to be afraid of. A friend who never asks for prayer, asked. What are we all thinking as we face another 24 hrs, an extended Lock down, or more news coming in from frontlines, where people are facing way more than emptied food shelves….
I got this ( pl see below Thinking Man). It isnt all gloomy. In fact, in it’s own heart rending way, the following words change me….
Pray for Italy🙏🏻
“From Dr. Julian Urban, a 38 year-old serving in a hospital in Lombardy, Italy:
—LIGHT IN A DOCTOR’S DARKEST NIGHTMARE—
Never in my darkest nightmares did I imagine that I would see and experience what has been going on in Italy in our hospital the past three weeks. The nightmare flows, and the river gets bigger and bigger. At first, a few patients came, then dozens, and then hundreds. Now, we are no longer doctors, but sorters who decide who should live and who should be sent home to die, though all these patients paid Italian health taxes throughout their lives.
Until two weeks ago, my colleagues and I were atheists. It was normal because we are doctors. We learned that science excludes the presence of God. I laughed at my parents going to church.
Nine days ago, a 75-year-old pastor was admitted into the hospital. He was a kind man. He had serious breathing problems. He had a Bible with him and impressed us by how he read it to the dying as he held their hand. We doctors were all tired, discouraged, psychologically and physically finished. When we had time, we listened to him.
We have reached our limits. We can do no more. People are dying every day. We are exhausted. We have two colleagues who have died, and others that have been infected. We realized that we needed to start asking God for help. We do this when we have a few free minutes. When we talk to each other, we cannot believe that, though we were once fierce atheists, we are now daily in search of peace, asking the Lord to help us continue so that we can take care of the sick.
Yesterday, the 75-year-old pastor died. Despite having had over 120 deaths here in 3 weeks, we were destroyed. He had managed, despite his condition and our difficulties, to bring us a PEACE that we no longer had hoped to find. The pastor went to the Lord, and soon we will follow him if matters continue like this.
I haven’t been home for 6 days. I don’t know when I ate last. I realize my worthlessness on this earth. I want to use my last breath to help others. I am happy to have returned to God while I am surrounded by the suffering and death of my fellow men.
Pls pray for Italy”
And may I add, pray for our neighbours, each other, ourselves. For international wisdom and tact as we go forward.
What started two years ago with a few young people across Bangalore city, today was just Family, oweing to ‘Janata Curfew’: people’s voluntary curfew where every Indian stays indoors all day till 9pm this evening.
So we got together for today: our daughter Vihan who made our Haven call come true with her heart of steel and love for Jesus & every soul ever; our son Johann (I’ve written about him here, he’s recovering so well. Thankyou all for prayers). There’s the one and only NoelJeff without whom this family would be an awkward lot. Our second daughter KitsyRuth, the Bijli(electricity) of us (and Chef!). Then me: still catching my breath from some weird sort of illness- that’s-not-Covid🥴: glad for the grace of God that’s brought us through a strange 365×2 days, hallel! It was worth it all, to watch Family grow this way. Do join every Sunday, Subscribe for Updates, Share with people who might appreciate company, comment so we know you’re there…
Trusting these Vids are understood for the purpose of Sharing God’s Comfort. None of us are Pros., just extremely ordinary -everyday- veggie- chopping- hassled over nitty gritty- kind of people with an extraordinary Father who loves us all no matter what we think of Him, no matter how dark the road might seem. You are not alone.
If you zoom in, you’ll see those Lotus low left in tiny pond at Cubbon Park here in Bangalore city. India. Warm warm day, 28 degrees already!– lunch and ice cream in the shade. Too much fun to take pictures, but we got a few.
March always feels like sunshine warming herself up from cold waves and February mist/rain.
March’s flower- Daffodils, (in India its called Nargis), oh what beauties these are too, ‘Heralds of Spring’! As we get a new sunset, my heart fills with new colors. It’s like we must determine our flavour. What tones would you choose, what Flower/ (flavour) would you be?
Not a question I’ve thought of before,
but today…..a young person at our Haven fellowship; all he could talk about was the Love of God, and how on earth did God love like that? He asked.
The more I listened to him, the more it struck me how different he was from the rest of us with issues at finance, or health! This guy, (I’ll call him Len) got eyes like liquid stars when he talked of the Love of God that drew him in. He spoke a few soft sentences and it went round and round that one thing: the Love of God.
After we went each into our lives, post service, there’s that gentle fragrance, of the touch of God. Like Light and Rain that falls on the good, the bad, the ugly. Nothing changes the way It falls in at us.
As this new month arrives, I’m feeling all blessed- up grateful for the flavors life brings in. Unsure of my own flavour, but I’d love to sample more of the Aroma of Christ:
how He is Manna and Dew in our days, how His Love has no limits, limitations. How It overwhelms all other love, need, want, showing me a pathway of peace and one that does not misunderstand my place in it all.
As I wrap this, a lone bright star twinkles through branches of trees outside. Another month approaches, I love the way a new month feels, especially this one. Fragrances of Lent, of a Father Heart with room for us all.
It is almost too good to believe, the whole story of ‘Easter‘, the Cross, Gethesemane, the Passion of Christ for us each. We tend to lean on our own needs and their fulfillment, more than what is,
or perhaps tend to misunderstand why this or that happened in our lives. Why there is war, or crime, illness, loneliness, why something is the way it shouldn’t be.
And then there are people like Len, all still in wonder at the Love of God.
I’m basking in those four words, THE LOVE OF GOD. Maybe it’s fragrance is best expressed in Joy? And I’m lending myself this, for the next 30 days. Maybe that’s the truth of Lent. That we take for free, not just as a Lending, the absolute Joy that comes from knowing how deeply we are loved by the One that made us, each, so intricately complex, every cell and thought process. How magnificent the aspect of each human, far more than lilies of the field, or all the blossoms in every tree, ever. I find myself staring at humans. Irises. Brows. Fingers. Smiles.
Laughter. The fantasticity of Births. Deliveries. Pain. Relief. Grace. Healing.
The way my friend Maya looks when she’s happy. Uncle J’s stillness. Light in the Gulmohar tree, and Dina’s voice when she prays. The hush of waiting…..
it’s all too much beauty stacked in one life, and I’m bursting grateful for the opportunity to see it all. Not just the shiny bits but the grey of dawn as I wrap this.
Gratitude: it’s the flavour I want to be, for it delivers one to Joy.
firstname.lastname@example.org, updated in Contacts. Apologies, this Blog is taking a while to update. There’s some mail still going to my old blog address. And I don’t understand how 2 or 3 of my Blog friends are unable to see any email from here. If that’s you, please do let me know. Thanks! 🌻
“Almost 20,000 women & children were victims of human trafficking in India 2016, a rise in 25% ….” pg145, ASHA-Journey of Hope* :
Quote from new Release by Biblica Inc. & people who really care beyond the details of getting out a ‘Book’:
these Pages have broken my heart and healed me in ways I didn’t think could happen, simply because you wonder whether anyone can actually help. I’ve personally seen too much to believe there are groups like ‘Project Esther’. Even this Paperback* is not for sale.
‘I AM THE GOOD SHEPHERD’. John 10:11,14,15. Really? What does Jesus of Nazareth 2000 years ago, even know about ‘Amy’ (true account) : below
‘Amy’ an unwed young mother.. weeping uncontrollably when she heard this NGO’s name was ESTHER. She had given her baby away 30 mins. before, and had named her Esther.
Today this young woman’s life is being pieced together by the love of God and people who teach her to forgive. She never got her child back.
I cannot read anymore for now, though I promised a ‘proper’ review. The enormity of this sits in my throat like a two edged sword. The Word of God can cut through all our silence. One wants to say something nice and wise. Some of us write, sing, paint…. is it enough? Maybe together we are stronger, we can see more with each others’ eyes and address. Right where you and I live, there are silenced voices, eyes that veil wounds.
ASHA explores each of Jesus’ “I AM” statements in the light of how they apply to women who’ve suffered abuse. It also features stories of women and girls who’ve bravely entrusted to us details of their own trauma. Excerpt from original Print. Purpose of this book, is to reach out to members of our community: you are not alone.
Published by Biblica Inc. All rights reserved. ASHA Journey of Hope. 2020
I admit of late, (with not much prior experience to saying such a thing), I now like the thing, I like cooking. Not a twinge in my bones warned me of this change, this betrayal of who I used to be.
Last month I found my Ma’s cookbook called Family Secrets; she’s written it all down there, I can smell her curry leaf seasoning, her tomato pickle in the window sill, her garden coriander leaf and onion gold fried in black bottomed pan;
my dad said that pan had nine lives, it never died.
I do not have Ma’s pan but I am changing, like my face in the mirror, like my hands that could not take cold water, or luke warm. Now I don’t need anything ‘just so’, just the aroma of veggie chopped cubes in slow stir; oh the experience, again of mint chutney we grew to love, all spluttery with mustard seed in coconut oil and tiny steel bowl served on dining table in veranda next to the kitchen. We lived by the sea, once on a mountain, an island, she always grew a garden, I have my own: sea shells in pots and Lime bonsai… those little green mint leaf? They spike lemon these days.
Flavors we once knew, they return in new ways. How d’you experience the same heart beat, in new rhythm… I cannot know, but its here.
I’m my Ma, a piece of her. I now love well- polished glasses, tinkly spoons. I never used to. Never admired wheat pure home-made breads in tiny warm basket, not just to eat but to serve. I’m changing, that’s for sure. It must be Time 😃!
Last night after the last dish went in and the moon was a full circle of cool warm shade in our window, a bird chirped full- throat, right in my pulse…I felt it, Life. In its simplicities. No fuss, nah no frill, just the old Order giving way to New. Like an old Prayer whispered all over again,
like tender mercies new every morning; I’m experiencing the everlasting Faithfulness of God.
Oh thrilled to have found a favourite happy place in my own world of shadows and valleys of doubt. Here I find not just beauty and reality but a peace that comes from knowing we are pilgrims in an earth that will fade away before we see that Perfect Light of Christ. Lorraine, thankyou for allowing me to post your work here. Stay blest beautiful one.
“And let perpetual light shine on them,” Those words I heard today, Not expecting them to come, Quite suddenly they pierced the air, I raised my head, Looking to the heavens As if to take in all my memories, The joy, the pain, the laughter
Suddenly all were one, Joined together seamlessly, Chickens, corn and sandpits Apples, nuts and tractors in the fields, Starry nights that made me ask “Where is God?” And in my child’s mind’s eye I saw Him beyond the stars Swathed in mystery And yet So simple Here, in the evening of my life I sat, re-connecting with my past And all of those who went before me, On them and on all my memories the words did fall, “And let perpetual light shine on them….”
Hello and welcome to my site.
My name is Lorraine Lewis, and I am blind. I became blind in 2016 as a result of a very serious and advanced cancer, and the treatment that I received.
In 2013 it was touch and go whether I lived or died, and there began the loneliest journey of my life. A true wilderness experience.
Now, I am in remission, but as well as being blind I am unable to walk, and am wheelchair bound. My husband too is wheelchair bound, and we face daily challenges just to survive. The wilderness experience, with all its difficulties and obstacles continues, but somehow or other we get through.
In the midst of all the pain and suffering, and the deepest loneliness I have ever known, I found a well deep inside me that I did not know I had until I started to drink from it. It was not a physical well, but a spiritual one, and I would like to share with you in various ways, my journey in the wilderness of cancer, blindness, and inability to walk. Along the way we may meet deep pains and sorrows, but also a depth of joy that defies everything that life has thrown at me.
Here, on this site you will find Poems and Reflections that will bring you into my world, and that may touch your world. And as we journey, we will find that even in the wilderness we can be enabled to drink from the Fountain of Life.
“Love knows no barriers. It jumps hurdles, leaps over obstacles penetrates walls to arrive at its destination full of hope.”
Lorraine’s poems, blogs and reflections are from her wilderness experience of having cancer and being blind. “The wilderness is a very isolating and lonely place, with many hardships and sometimes seemingly insurmountable difficulties to face. It is a place of suffering and this site reflects the many struggles that any of us can undergo in our differing wilderness experiences. Despite the pains and the darkness of the wilderness and desert places, the stars can still be seen, and even deserts can bloom, so along the way, there will be gems to be found. I have chosen to use the Cross as a symbol also, because I have discovered that for me, the way through suffering was and is to be found in the Cross Although that is a Christian symbol, the wilderness or desert experience can come to any of us, no matter what faith we hold, or even if we hold none. So I hope that as Maya Angelou says, there will be no barriers, and that all of us, through our sharing, can find our way through, appreciating the gems that we find on the way whilst not denying the suffering that we go through. May we all learn to look to the stars, and see how brightly they shine out in the darkness, and take heart and courage...”
That Impossible thing you do relying on your 'nth sense alone.
I’ve been fascinated long enough with Michelangelo’s 15 ft marble masterpiece David, to take a good read on material I could get, and look what I found: along with some Questions, some Answers & an impossibly naked prayer….“**
Michelangelo sculpts his David as before his battle with Goliath: quiet tense, with ‘pebble’ hidden in right palm, his slingshot seemingly at rest on his shoulder. He is left handed? He catches his giant by surprise.
At 26 years old in 1501, Michelangelo accepted the challenge to sculpt a large scale David, from an unfinished project flawed with ‘taroli‘ or imperfections: it was in the Vestry’s courtyard for 25 years. No one expected such a revolutionary translation of a biblical hero.
What was this young Italian Sculptor thinking those 4 years working a discarded humongous white rock of ‘flawed’ marble? Why the heart shaped pupils and ‘one eye looking at a closer object, the other at a more distant one…?’ What does this Teenage Shepherd boy symbolize, not just as the most famous naked statute in the world….?
Traditionally, David had been portrayed post- victory over the slain Goliath. But Michelangelo chooses a David poised, before all of the action – leaning his focus on the power of a God who had already delivered him from a lion and a bear, bare handed.
It would take 4 days x 40 men to move the statue the half mile from Michelangelo’s workshop by Santa Maria del Fiore Cathedral to the Piazza della Signoria. Luca Landucci, diarist, recounts:
“…midnight, May 14th, and the ‘Giant’ was taken out of the workshop. They even had to tear down the archway… 40 men were pushing the large wooden cart where ‘David’ stood protected by ropes, sliding it through the town on trunks. The Giant eventually got to Signoria Square on June 8th 1504…”
Michelangelo worked at the statue in secrecy … he worked in the open courtyard, in the rain: this inspired him? It’s been said he submerged a wax model of his design in water. As the water level dropped he’d chisel what emerged. He slept in at work, ate when he could….
his craftsmanship is ‘flesh- soft’, frozen palpable restful caution, reflected in a classic pose (contrapposto); one leg bearing full weight, while the other leans forward allowing hip and shoulder to recline at opposing angles, lending the entire torso it’s now legendary S- curve : the stance of a confident, focused watchful warrior.
**Why the heart shaped pupil under furrowed brows? You’d furrow, burrow, …….owwww anything if you were faced with a bloodthirsty monster’s 7ft sword going at your jugular… I can’t say. I wasn’t there,
though I’ve seen a few monster cyclones, a semi tidal wave, a few insane river crossings, one deadly mountain route; sat in at a Mumbai eatery while a 10,000 strong mob rioted past looking for petrol and match; I even been in the 200 km No man’s Land between India and Karachi: with quiet (back then) Border Security and long sweet smelling grass:
you were not just staring at danger, you were gazing at Something else you couldn’t define. Your brain had registered earlier Goodness. You remembered how the ocean looked before the storm, you perhaps even thought this too- would pass. You chose not to think the cyclone would sweep your roof away. You looked on life with ‘heart-shaped pupils’ waiting for the morning sun, waiting in a way that knew storms and rough places were not eternal situations. In that moment you chose not to rely on mere senses; if you prayed, you didn’t have time to format words. There were no words. You forgot formality, you were stripped of human comfort, you didn’t care. But you remembered somethings no one could have told you to remember, none but another Power could whisper that secret, in ways beyond aural, they were metaphysical? Maybe, maybe there’s more adjectives than we know.
D’you remember a time you thought you were alone in a place no one else could reach, but Something held you? That Fever you thought could never leave, that Accident that took your leg but gave you wings, you now remember all that and it pushes you up the rungs of a Thing like a stair case made of gold, gold because it’s like nothing else you’ve known…. resilient after a fire rinse, beautiful in the refining….
You’re looking at all that now with eyes of a love you never thought existed …
A love for divine intervention, interpretation…
a love for the impossible.
You cannot find words to pray, but your mental Sling is working:
there’s a giant, a Goliath in your face. You’re looking at It, but also at the Possibility of an impossible solution. You’ve got to take the very thing you been good at, those proverbial ‘5 pebbles from little stream at home’, your well worn sling>these kiddie weapons, but it’s all you got, stripped of other armour too much for you to fit into!
But all you got is enough.
You surprise yourself, and your giant.
You become the giant….. 15 feet tall, pure gleaming material now, from something you thought was flawed:
if anything is a Prayer/ an Asking – it’s this one:
when the human spirit asks its Creator, what they can collaborate on together: “..what d’You want me to do next?”
What is that one stance that is most opposed to human nature?
It’s what made a Michelangelo, and the original David. (Michelangelo surprised even Leonardo Da Vinciin that broad room meeting they had, deciding where to stall David). It is Job sitting in the market place in ashes and sackcloth saying,”Never mind the nasty things my besties say about me, bless them God, I know my Redeemer lives…for me.” It is Daniel flung in the lion’s den, unafraid, “..even if He slays me, I trust Him.” It is Esther and Ruth, Hannah and Sara. Or Gideon and Moses. It is you and me, every so often, walking through everyday miracles of existence and healing and we mightn’t even notice some times but we prayed these impossible prayers, naked of all garb/pretence/fear/doubt/lack of gut;
we might be there today, and we look around and find these little or large, old and new mammoth Illustrations of how humans can pray, or perhaps it’s possible we have done it, and haven’t realised it….
Not possible to gaze beyond our Goliath and look askance at ……..an Invisible God?
But this got me here, @ the kind of prayer Stance that defies visible support….*
His embrace will not just hold you, It holds all men and friend and foe, whoa,
what’d I think His Comfort was… sweet cuddly Bear arm, warm with Paternity? His Comfort Zone is more than I dare dream… ach!
It’s in the Slap of the storm, in the Sap of the thorn,
Haha, I wasn’t chatting with God then, cuz He is in the crooky path of stray mountain goat; and I thought Love meant Light, but He takes the Night, longing like Darkness does for Dawn, for those that are unloved, forgotten…
…. all are clung together here: the healed, dead, dying, worthy, worthless, wasted idiot, reckless loser, offender, disbeliever, saint, deathless sinner : in that embrace that defies human limitations to Love like that.
Dyou believe mid-traffic, He heard the noise in my head, my questions and riot; I know a thing left me. Shadows,doubt.
How can I say enough the way this is?
He heard me. Didn’t change the situation,but He heard my voice. It tore past all His universe, and it resonates deep within.
What greater thing there is I do not know. Not healing, not change, not even peace, but that He heard me. On just this I can go to sleep and not sweat the whys and wheres and whens. I love that there’s communication with Someone like Him. And that He cares.