Tag: Grace

Watch “SECRET GULLY | THE BOY WITH NO NAME (Pt .2) | Little Lights” on YouTube

Inspired by a real life 5 year old I met one monsoon at a school for slum kids,

you’d never forget ‘Raju’ the school called him. His folks called him ‘chokra’ for street boy. There was no hatred at his home, only the face of poverty, the numbing face of sleepless days and nights. His parents were construction workers.

When Raju first arrived in a pair of oversized torn shorts, shirtless and with eyes like tiny thunder, he wouldn’t speak. I was story telling art teacher; we did some fun things, enacting Jesu in the boat. Raju loved being the storm.

By the third day we knew he loved drawing – with one crayon, the black one. He drew thick circles in black, then some more. Pages of black circles.

I was recovering from 3 years of a fever no one could diagnose, it could’ve been anything, but I was there every morning as a part of my own ‘get well’ project;

It was, is an unforgettable thing – to experience that sinking feeling of instability, physical failing, & be in a ‘Gully’ that thick with hope.

Lil Raju and I became speechless friends as we learned the power of blue against black, or orange with grey, yellow with maroon. He called me “didi”, big sis.

Every morning he was there, waiting for Art class, and drama, in the street opposite the tea shop.

On the last day I ever saw him he clutched my hand and said, “Didi mujhe ghar leke jao” (didi, take me home)

I loved him with all my heart, and I couldn’t take him home with me. There were at least 50 others like him but ofcourse Raju was the one no one liked. He was full of lice, his fingers were quick, he knew how to steal, he understood the street, he was scary to most. To me he was that little baby boy I couldn’t take home. But forever and ever he lives in my heart.

The boy with no name” is a fantasy offering that has little pieces of my own life woven in its prayers for joy, for all our streets, infested with poverties of more horrific proportions than we could’ve guessed. Do watch if you have the moment: return to childhood, listen again to that Still Small Voice that ceaselessly whispers to the heart of a child within us, or around. If there’s a kid (or kiddy- like human:) in your home, or neighbourhood, do share. This is the second episode. (Part I, U tube, also below).

Wishing you ‘The Light of the World.’

Shine, k?

Episode 1.

“Redemption”

Oil says it better than my fingers, Grace says it best: flowing like blood, in the vein of us- humanity. The Oil of Grace.

Detail. Oil on canvas. RN.
The greatest strength is not the power to kill, but to return love for hate. He made redemption possible for the very ones who gambled on His clothing while He still breathed.

Not for sale.

Not my favorite theme to paint, for Its demand on mood and line, but this time It called me, “…into participation & companionship with His Son Christ Jesus our Lord.”(1Cor1:9). Everyday it changes me, every day it teaches me to forgive, love back, hold on to what held me, holds me.

The Greatest Human Need*

You see It* in naked mouths, in burdened markets, in death cells & cathedrals; we all await the same thing.

I saw It last week in a wee apartment & momma with sick child,

saw It crying in the Street yesterday outside a Cafe: a man sat in Crossword puzzles; his face sunk. A couple in phones, not touching shoulders like Love sits; she refused cake, he shrugged, got a green mango ice cream, the silence only stopped now and then when the happy eyed waiter grinned. He grinned as he walked between polka-dotted giant cups perched in high wooden open cabinets and acrylic fern;

we diced snakes & ladders at this Cafe called Narcos. Hmm. No drugs, just us in chilled sweaters and hungry for chat as mothers and daughters can be when needing to know we are loved – no conditions, no time to comb hair. There was that need, to taste a satisfaction…..

a diamond waiting to be sharved (just made that word) ;

It….is like Water waiting to Fall, like a Niagara e’en. We say, What. That….! But we turn into terrorists at Traffic messes, we become brooding hens over interruptions, we snarl at headlines, and run like headless chicken when ignored. Oh and this – we absolutely evangelize on the meanness of God when there’s an earth disaster, then we build Cathedrals of mistrust….

It was there yesterday at Happa Stationers‘- guy in dull red cap o’er few flat locks, he strung them over his shoulder, his face dead-fire, as we traded notes for exam accessories for my Kitsy,

she with eyes like stars over an unknown future. Some people are Bearers of Good. They go like a Lighthouse searching the dark:

Clover grass ‘neath step at Stationers.
Pic Courtesy : Kitsy Ruth.

****

we retrace steps back home, the sun is warm in our cold toes. Yea an Indian cold. Cold enough to shiver my pigeon;

am scared to read the papers – they lie face down in a jute bag under chair turned to the trees outside, as if asking these skies for Noah’s rainbow;

today’s unopened Times sun bathes next to Rosie, with her 50+ tiny spiky leaves and rose pouting…..

like us Humans rearing for relief.

We’ve schooled our Self to hiss like serpents in gardens of Grace. We rap our own knuckles if we fall prey to God’s Love. We skid, stop stare like rabbits caught in headlights, stammering- afraid to give in to Humanity’s best-masked need:

(Terrified of what we do not know, what we do know holds us safe among ‘relatables; eaters of edible bad news);

I saw It Staring at me via a Cartwoman selling tomatoes. No Cross tattoo in her throat like some of us Church goers host, no prayer beads except rich busy fingers at brinjal and coriander leaf, like she were a branch off Him who made her veggies! As if there was nothing to fear. Yeah her purpose to be the Bearer of Grace.

Yeah I can talk of Love and Valentine trophies all day but if I didn’t receive this Thing, I wouldn’t know how to give it. ‘IT’ …a 5 lettered word one sees best on a Hill far away.

Soon we’ll be doing Lenten fasts and Anthems to woo It back in our lanes, aye Grace– lurking in corners like a lost Lover, a jealous one, aching to forgive, bless, heal, restore, love:

aching that we believe *Its reach, Its depth, Its width, Its unfathomable Power to raise the Human Spirit from the Store Rooms of hell.

Yea, yes- the most under-rated, least accessed, the Greatest Human need there is- Grace:

Love always follows. No matter the odds.

Grace : unmerited divine assistance given to humans for their regeneration or sanctification. b : a virtue coming from God. c : a state of sanctification enjoyed through divine assistance.http://www.merriam-webster.com › grace

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.

Louise_ness1’s papier mâché deer; love her little spider base of deer neck, with whom she made an agreement to let him just be….

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.

Louise_ness
https://instagram.com/louise_ness1?igshid=1khu6ljo3w7bh

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.

Pathways there be many: the which I take be good or naught, I scarce can say as yet, though this I know Someone walked this path and tread a forest out so my feet could dis- a wearie be, for this I’m grateful Gentle Shepherd who leads, leads me e’ery year, leads me be. (Anon)

Thankyou & looking forward!

Okayeeee! My first attempt at this, shaky albeit, in our messy:) creative space at home; but needed to say thankyou and too, if you’re on U tube – will be putting out Vihan’s Debut album EVENING WITH GRACE, the best in contemporary worship music I’ve ever heard! Description in Utube has a bit on that.

It’s a season of gratitude in my heart and home, gratitude to friends who’ve been so supportive, and God, the source of my Joy!

I’ve been writing a bit more than usual, hence the quiet days here at Innerdialects. However, I might be trying to talk Vlog here. Let’s see how this works. Happy thoughts, but let’s see. My heart is full of reasons to say thank you Lord God! It’s been an insane year for us all as Nations, but also a season of inner dialogue…. for me, and for you too I guess? Hmm. I had to absolutely conquer my fear of the camera to do this one…. for my little girl who does every possible thing she can to get me going! ‘Evening with Grace‘ happened to her all in one evening as she sat with God: 9 songs in exquisite arrangements and vocals (all hers!)that make me cry everytime I hear snippets in passing as Noe and Vi edit these beauties. I’m blessed to be able to put this out.

Thankyou dear Blogging community for every Like and Comment or Read,

in a time like this one, this space has been a Den of Joy for me. God bless you for being there, and for being who you are, fabulous!

New every morning

Refresh my soul, let the doors of you, open to Peace. Let everything within breathe Grace. May our mind lean on Him whose mercies never fail, they are new every morning. Great is His faithfulness. Greater than all my bounteous lack. His power in my weakness, oh the fact of that. Not I but Christ in me, not the dark, but the Light in me. ReNew every morning soul, stay blest.

unsplash.

**

Touched

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,

stay at ease, peace..

The Outcaste’s Prayer

Worshipper.
RN

Here there is no one else, here there are no words, none but Yours- falling in my ears, like a Prayer :

I have never heard You pray before, I have never heard You pray over me: Words that breathe life over my ash. This I could not have believed, that God would pray o’er a broken spirit, an outcaste, a one no one sees….

but You pray over me, and I do not know the Words, it is the syllable of a Heart whispering in mine, it is the rush of a Stillness,

it is the Balm of Gilead, the Blood of a Brother, the hold of a Mother, the unflinching gaze of a Father. It is the Table in the wilderness, it is Gethesemane’s kiss, only God could know how Alone feels: it is more than humans can express, and I’m glad I was here, broken, cast out.

I’m glad for the desert, it gave me room to run barefeet, stripped of pretence. I’m glad I lost all,

here – like this, I heard You pray over me, and it’s the single most powerful thing I’ve heard.

Pause calmly ….Selah!

Much to un-think here, @ a 3 hour drive from Bangalore city, into tiny growing town.

That cloud sits on thatch? …. its an untouched blue sky with no malls or smog.
At Kuppam’s local market, one or two women are speaking fluent English, their eyes are warm. I meet a beautiful lady at the Railways- she mans a 2ft iron wheel that lifts railway-cross gate. There is no time to take her picture…..
want to wish her a Happy New Year like we wished some others, but Railway lady in blue sari is busy; she turns to give me another look, then surprises us with a wide smile, white teeth and laughing eyes. The woman must be somewhere around 3o, 40? I send a small hand-wave. She waves back, laughing like a school girl.
On our next visit to Kuppam, we simply must get a pic with her.
Good holidays are also those when you’ve no time for a good photograph?
We stay almost a week here.
That lovely Gate is under repair. There were lesser sheep this time at Kuppam: no it’s not a farm for animals, just us humans+ cuddly paws.
My sis sculpts her fav words into woodwork, grills….
She’s an Eye Doc in this town, border to three south Indian states. Li loves the precious simple life here with a faithful househelp and furry princess.
Like Trees planted by Springs of Living waters; there’s backyard Date palm, bougainvillea, guava, papaya, mango, occasional monkey ….
Bonfire woodies. Such memories here with Mom&Dad in this space by Christmas tree, Gulmohar, shoeflower, a baby tamarind tree. Time has flown by ‘like smoke through a key hole…’ (Movie : The Bucket List)
Honey!
Li’s exquisite cuisine
That new double road used to be a rough path to Kupz’s lake. There are more people, cars, school buses, buildings today….
Floors, tiny christmas lights asleep
Meshed safety front grill to keep away esp. mosquitoes. That door lock has seated one or two friendly frog. Very tiny ones. They look like Kermit to us, but Li doesn’t think so. She says(with shudder) they (her leapy frog) wait for her with sly grin.
No, they’re not ..!” is her horror response
to my Q.”What if they just want a kiss, and will turn into your Prince?
Li loves her Prince of Peace best.


The road back…. miles off city limits: goatsherd!
Thresh time! We must gingerly drive over their sheaves, this helps them? (Green lid sohmph my new travel mate from Li’s kitchen).
You can’t see this well enough, but that’s a Church steeple over local temple, rerouting past Kolar gold fields.
Sunset over another gorgeous day; Joh is quiet this past hour. Bangalore city is closer from this long stretch, after brief stop for Lassi.
Back home @Greenview, our feathered granddaughter Tina has two ugly blonde chicks… soon they’ll grow fine feathers. One must wait. And watch.
And did you know Pigeon can be trained to recognize every alphabet?
Tina’s mom is our second daughter Kitsy:) Tina herself was hatched here (also mothered by Kit, so). Complicated!

All this in our little garden which will be busy this season. Phew!
Wishing 2020 Vision for us all.
Peace, Shalom :
nothing missing, nothing broken.
And if there is ‘missing- broken’, may each fit in a whole new way, causing Peace beyond belief.
Selah: meaning, Pause calmly & think of that.

What Child is This?

Today at our little church overlooking gulmohar trees and a blue December sky, the question was asked,“What does Jesus mean to you?”

I don’t like Q&As; we could be judged in these sessions, but this morning here there are people in their teens and twenties and the few of us other gen. humans. They are frank and brilliant,

some say Christ is Love and Light;

to make it even more hard to be real honest, the young preacher asks us to know Jesus sits in the room and that we do this on birthdays don’t we…don’t we say a few words about the birthday person, so… let’s make this a personal Christmas, she says.

I’m getting more uncomfortable. You don’t fake it with the son of God. It’s my turn to say my few words. I speak my heart,

See Jesus used to be my best friend. The kind that puts up with all my nonsense. A Big brother. As I grew older He was the stronger. As I grew tired He was my strength. Now though, He makes me uncomfortable. “

I pause for breath before venting.“These days He is a mirror. Showing me how selfish I am. I see Him in the faces of neighbours, strangers… relatives… I see Him asking me to love them, help them if I had it in my power to.”

This info begins to worry me but it’s from a real place.

My life isn’t just about me. Sure. I know. And I wonder what kind of Person can love like that, to change me from the inside so I get to care about Mrs.Lanley Aru, and her husband who hurts people, and Ghanush, and Miya. And Bobo and Tre. All a bunch of people who should go to a school for behavioural disorders. I can feel His gaze go right thru me. Dont tell me that’s emotional stuff. You dont know me. I couldn’t love like that. I couldn’t care about these peoples eternal lives, why would I want to live with them eternally, please.

What kind of story is this: from cradle to a crude cross:

I’m out of breath.

To be cont’d .

Have a great day,

💌

Be that Star

A Christmas Prayer:

“Let me be that Star,

Let Your Life blaze through my inadequacy,

Gaze thru’ my shadows with Compassion, with forgiveness and the kind of tender mercy You’ve stood for,

Oh Gentle Saviour, arrest my blindness with Your freedom to be who I was made to be, in the Light of your power. Free me from what blurs my vision

Beautiful One be born this day in my ash, my ashes of dreams, for a star is that; may I reflect You, reaching out to me via Light years of Love.

Teach me Love, Your Love Oh Sacred Head once Wounded for me, Your Story stuns me o’er and o’er….

past the frills and fluster of seasonal cheer, I want to know the real You more and more, Gentle Jesus of the Cross, as You go about Your Day do not pass me by,

may our planet shine with You, with the Life of Your Light.

Have you seen someone inhale music thru’ their ears…

My Jeff (Noel – no one else would put up with my messy paint tubes and books in corners and centre stage of my life), when he listens to music it’s like he’s breathing it in via ear phones. I’ve not seen someone savour music the way he does; it’s his profession (Sound) yet him soaking it in with palms clasped over headphones makes me realize the gift of music is to be unwrapped, opened to senses and inhaled into spirit… the Balm of Gilead!

We’re listening to a recording of our three children doing their take on Kanye’s Jesus is Lordhttps://youtu.be/p2TuJFlv2Uk

Johann in black Tee, with guitar Vihan next to striped girl Kitsy

(they’re at a carol a day: drummer boy, 3 kings, God resting merry gentle…)

where they get their joy is something to watch; it’s been a month of us battling med induced aggression with our son, I’ve written my nails blue on this one but that’s not the story here. Gratitude spills out my ears that mid all this there can be music? Maybe because its December, maybe it’s that time God’s letting in a new season. This time around I wasn’t able to think on a carol, then the kids do what they do in season and out. Music’s been a norm, a hard habit to break. It’s now a best friend. A gift from God, unwrapped over and over. Jeff gets his headphones out, his brown eyes swim out at me for joy, what else can describe this… comfort,hope,healing….

ay weeping may endure a night but joy comes in the morning.

Thankyou God that trusting You isn’t a myth, You’re not a long ago Shepherd with Psalmist sheep in tow, You’re not stuck in Time- wrapped in swaddling diapers, You’re not even embalmed on iron crosses for us to kiss when we can’t pray. You’re here.

I don’t know when healing will arrive for sure, but this is a greater miracle that Peace can trek thru’ storms with us. It’s a miracle that our son pushing through momentary random aggression can even smile and pause to sing.

Jeff is a warrior. I go climbing walls when am anxious; sure I pray but I turn into a praying spider woman. He’s the calm lake of Galilee thankyou Lord Precious Jesus.

Thank You for people in our lives who have ears to hear Your Music, Your Voice mid all others’. Thank You that Christmas is more than a Season of Decor & Shine. Thank You that though it’s a long trek through Valley of the Shadow of Doubt we need fear no evil, You’re there.

Ow. This was an instagram post. Jeff&me.
There is a tide turning

There is a tide turning

There is a tide turning in your life,

a season returning,

a harvest,

a plot softened by the unexpected

shower.

This is time to weep release,

dance healing, restore

from tearing.

A time to take

joy,

stake claim make returns on what you never thought remembered your name

This is that time,

it comes by once in a few ways,

crumbs of yesterday.

This is that time, a tide turning,

a season a harvest, waiting

in you.

@raylarn

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