Out with the old…

“Out with the old…”

Some little/big Christmas Miracles (2013)

The object of the exercise this year was to make Christmas a bit more up-beat and enjoyable for my mother. Her wedding anniversary with my father was always on the 19th December, and several years back he died on the 24th December, Christmas Eve. Christmas’s since have understandably been subdued and quiet for her, especially as now she is in her 80’s and there are fewer and fewer relatives and people around to share it with. 2012 was the last one with my second youngest sister, who was already sick with cancer and a brain tumor and later died in March of this year. My youngest sister died many years ago of multiple sclerosis. My mother’s two brothers are gone also, leaving her two sisters, but both live far away. All the siblings of my father are gone too, except the youngest who lives in Portugal. All but one of her grandchildren are adults as well, and all of these also live far from this secluded little part of the world. So, it was just Mum and me, except for a few days visit from my last surviving sister just before this Christmas.

Though Christmas was still quiet, being just the two of us, we had all we needed in the way of food, drink, shelter, comfort and entertainment. My Mum got “just what she wanted”, in the way of some special foot-care products – a tool to remove dead skin, and another to wash her feet thoroughly. She is diabetic, so she has problems with her feet, as well as finding it hard to bend over to reach them. These tools help her to manage much better.

After my sister left us to return to her home, a 5-6 hour journey by road, the weather was due to set it. One of the worst storms this year was to batter us for the two days before Christmas. We were right in the path of the major front coming in from the South-West. Amazingly the only damage was to half a panel of a section of fencing in the back garden, where the wood had rotted over the years and had broken away in the wind. We had no flooding, and no loss of electrical power at all. Sadly thousands of homes in other areas of the country received just exactly these results, and many are still flooded and without power. Not a “Happy Christmas” for many.

The days over Christmas, though a little wet and slightly windy, were mild and even sunny. Today, the first day after, another storm is upon us, though not as bad as the first one. In my opinion, it looks like we have been blessed with protection and peace at this special time.

My personal little miracle was another one of those amazing purchases of something needed…

I had received a speaker system to go with a smart TV, and although it came with a cable to connect it to a TV, my TV had only one particular connection method – a fiber-optic audio cable – and this type of cable did not come supplied with the speakers. My sister was visiting at this time so she offered to drive me to the little town nearby to see if we could get one. I had received a DVD for Christmas and was looking forward to watching it with full 3D surround sound.

We first went to the only electronics store in town, who said that they didn’t stock that particular type of cable. He could order it, but it would not arrive until the New Year, as it was so close to Christmas. If I would order it myself on-line I would be faced with the same situation. He also added that it would be unlikely that the only other store in town, an electrical appliance store, would stock it either, as it is a specialized type of item that is not commonly used much locally it seems. My only other option would have been to try to push my sister into a 4 hour round-trip drive to the nearest big city, which was out of the question.

We decided to try the electrical appliance store anyway, “just in case”. My experience with this particular store had never been too great before, so it was a real long-shot. I described what it was I was looking for to the lady in the store, not expecting that she would even understand what I was talking about. She said, “Well, all we have that I can think of, that sounds a bit like what you are looking for, is one of these….” and took me to a rack of cables of all types, shapes, sizes, and… there it was, exactly what I needed! Then, when we went to the cashiers’s counter to pay for it, my sister said “I’ll pay for this Dave! Christmas present!” 😀

This has not been exactly the kind of Christmas I was expecting to be experiencing this year though. The most difficult thing has been not being with my little daughter, due to circumstances I have no control over. It has been difficult to keep the “up-beat, happy mode” going as a result, as I miss her so much it hurts. However, soon it will be a New Year, and hopefully some “new beginnings” will present themselves.

These days of being off-line have been somewhat refreshing actually, allowing some time of rest from all “the usual”. It is quite amazing to me how when you “do nothing” other things seem to fall into a better, clearer perspective. So, on that note I will just take this opportunity to “bring in the new”, and wish everyone a…

HAPPY NEW YEAR!!! 😀

With love, David

P.S. – Take care to stay tuned for “A Brief Summary of Modern History”, which is in the works and should provide some provocative thinking!

Comments Off on Out with the old… Posted in Posts

“Just” Christmas!…

Hmmmmmmm! … “Christmas” … ???

As a kid growing up in England Christmas was all about being home from school for the holidays, a tree and decorations, lots of nice food, and most importantly gifts. As I grew older the number of gifts decreased, but were required to be more expensive. “Quality, not quantity” was the order of the day, letting my requests be made very well known. After all, it was my one chance in the year to get what I really wanted but otherwise could never afford. When I was 17 however all that changed.

I left home, unexpectedly, and started traveling as a missionary. I was in other countries throughout Europe, away from “home” at these times, and Christmas, though warm and pleasant with friends of like-mind and heart, was a very frugal affair, in every way, due to the fact that money was not a factor in personal life. It usually consisted of a quiet few days of contemplation, centered around a communal meal of some kind on Christmas Day.

By 1976 I was in India, and for the next 20-something years or so I was in Asian countries where Christmas is not traditionally celebrated. Though some of the more commercial aspects were visible in the cities, where foreign tourists would reside in the hotels and shop at the stores at this time, it didn’t feel very “Christmassy” generally, also especially because being tropical even the weather didn’t help to make it so. It was the one time of year however when I was involved in “Christmas Outreach” programs, mostly musical and stage productions of Christmas music and minor theatricals in Hotels, schools, residential homes, etc. Because this particularly took place in the run up to Christmas Day, as well as being the major involvement on the day itself and the day after, “Christmas” wasn’t usually celebrated personally until afterwards, somewhere between Christmas and New Year’s Day.

Honestly, what I would call a “real” Christmas didn’t become a reality for me until I came to Iceland, where it is still reverenced as a time to stop, remember what it is actually for, and is a time for family. Though of course there is the commercialism you find elsewhere, everything closes down from mid-day on Christmas Eve, for four days at least, and depending on which days of the week Christmas and New Year fall (New Year is another hugely anticipated and important celebration in Iceland) everything is in “stop” or “slow-mo” mode until January 2nd. I shall miss this.

This year, it will be very quiet, just me and my mother, but we will relax and enjoy some “treats”, warm and cozy in a very pretty rural area with mild temperatures and a great view outside our window. No tree, but lights and candles, and a “tipple” or two I expect.

I could say a lot about Christmas, especially about its meaning, as well as against the commercialism involved. I could even shock a few people with some facts that are overlooked, misunderstood, misinterpreted or ignored by the many traditions that surround this time of year, most of which have nothing to do with what the event is supposed to be about. Rather than argue controversial points though I will leave you with just a couple of thoughts to ponder…

First, to leave Christ out of Christmas is to miss the whole point entirely. In fact “Christmas Day” is best served by understanding that there are 365 of them in a year, 366 in a leap-year.

Second, I am one of those “incurable romantics”, a real “mushy gushy” kind of guy, and I have spent quite a few hours watching “Christmas movies” in my day. Do you know what I find to be the most meaningful though? Those “sappy” stories where the characters learn what is actually the most important aspect of what Christmas is supposed to be all about – Love, and especially love for one another.

This is what Jesus came to show us. His first important point was to let us know that His Dad is Love, and that loving Him is essential to our very existence, because we come from Him. But He said that loving others was “like unto” loving God, in other words it is a manifestation of what He is and how He loves us. “Inasmuch as you have done it unto the least of these…you have done it to Me”

So, whatever your “persuasion” just know that whatever we do in Love is what it is all about, and if you don’t yet know Him personally, then at least you will be on the right track. With Him in your life however, you also get the power to love more than is humanly possible, and that is a LOT of love, so “go for it!” 😀

With love always this Christmas,

David

Comments Off on “Just” Christmas!… Posted in Posts

Less than 20…

…is the number of books I have owned and read in my lifetime, other than The Bible and the collective works of David Berg. For those curious to know, they are as follows:

The Wind in the Willows (Kenneth Graham) which I won in a hand-writing competition in my school, aged 10.
The Pilgrim’s Progress (John Bunyan) which I was awarded by my teacher for making a puppet of, and playing the role of, “Christian”, from the book, in a puppet play we put on for our school.
The Complete Chronicles of Narnia (C. S. Lewis).
The Hobbit & The Lord of the Rings trilogy (J. R. R. Tolkien).
And now The Hunger Games trilogy (Suzanne Collins).

The fact that I own the last series is a bit amazing actually.

Recently a dear friend in Japan sent me the following article…

Donald Sutherland: ‘I want Hunger Games to stir up a revolution’
Rory Carroll, The Guardian, 19 November 2013

Donald Sutherland wants to stir revolt. A real revolt. A youth-led uprising against injustice that will overturn the US as we know it and usher in a kinder, better way. “I hope that they will take action because it’s getting drastic in this country.” Drone strikes. Corporate tax dodging. Racism. The Keystone oil pipeline. Denying food stamps to “starving Americans”. It’s all going to pot. “It’s not right. It’s not right.”

Millennials need awakening from slumber. “You know the young people of this society have not moved in the last 30 years.” With the exception of Occupy, a minority movement, passivity reigns. “They have been consumed with telephones.” The voice hardens. “Tweeting.”

We are high up in a Four Seasons hotel overlooking Beverly Hills, sunlight glinting off mansions and boutiques below, an unlikely cradle of revolution. Sutherland, resplendent in a dark suit and red tie, is pushing 80. But he is quite serious about the call to arms. “We did it in ‘68.”

The Canadian actor has a venerable record of left-wing activism dating back to support for the Black Panthers and opposition to the Vietnam war, but this latest foray into subversion dovetails with promoting The Hunger Games: Catching Fire, the second installment in a series of four films based on Suzanne Collins’s bestselling novels for young adults. It takes forward the story of Katniss, played by Jennifer Lawrence, who must fight other oppressed proles to the death as part of a tyrannical government’s strategy of rule through fear. The dystopia, called Panem, is built on the ashes of the US, and Sutherland wants young audiences to respond to the allegory. “

“Hopefully they will see this film and the next film and the next film and then maybe organize. Stand up.”

The next day I was in town with my mother, shopping, and we came across the books, on sale, and my mother bought them for me.

I totally agree with Donald. I am from “The 60’s”. I remember it, well, and he is right. No-one, especially since the end of the 70’s, has had much to say, nor done much, about what is wrong with things. Until now perhaps. Watch this…

I also agree with Russel. However, here are a few points to consider…

Our lives here on the Earth are temporary, as is “time” and “space” as we understand them. So, our spiritual revolution has to transcend even these, and there is only one way this can be done.

I will get to that in a moment, but please bear in mind that the 99.99% are never going to pull it all together enough to overthrow and change the “New World Order” that the 0.01% have gotten all but sewn up now (at the behest of THEIR lord and master)! It might be possible to hold it up a bit, but basically the “plan” and the outcome are already predicted! Sorry folks, but it IS going to get worse! So what do we do? How do we get out of this?

We have to understand that we are spiritual beings, first and foremost, and knowing this is the key! Russel and others are on the right track, but it is best to “go all the way”, and that is to the source of everything – God Himself, who made it all. He, being Love, had it all ready for us from the beginning, and all He has been trying to do is get us back to, literally, “Heaven on Earth” ever since!

There IS a spiritual “shortcut” anyone can take, at any moment, preferably before “death”, but Heaven on Earth IS coming folks, and finally “all wrongs WILL be made right”! Yay! 😀

If you walk through The Door NOW you get there QUICKER, in spirit at least! But soon, everything that everyone wants to be a reality will be as real as as you know things to be now, only BETTER! But why wait? – We need the grace to face and deal with how bad things are NOW, while we are waiting for the reality to arrive, and here is how you get it…

John 3:1 And there was a man of the Pharisees named Nicodemus, a ruler of the Jews.
John 3:2 He came to Jesus by night and said to Him, Rabbi, we know that you are a teacher come from God; for no man can do these miracles which you do unless God is with him.
John 3:3 Jesus answered and said to him, Truly, truly, I say to you, Unless a man is born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.
John 3:4 Nicodemus said to Him, How can a man be born when he is old? Can he enter the second time into his mother’s womb and be born?
John 3:5 Jesus answered, Truly, truly, I say to you, Unless a man is born of water and the Spirit, he cannot enter into the kingdom of God.
John 3:6 That which is born of the flesh is flesh, and that which is born of the Spirit is spirit.
John 3:7 Do not marvel that I said to you, You must be born again.
John 3:8 The Spirit breathes where He desires, and you hear His voice, but you do not know from where He comes, and where He goes; so is everyone who is born of the Spirit.

John 3:16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only-begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.
John 3:17 For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but so that the world might be saved through Him.

John 1:12 But as many as received Him, He gave to them authority to become the children of God, to those who believe on His name,
John 1:13 who were born, not of bloods, nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but were born of God.

Revelation 3:20 Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and will dine with him and he with Me.
Revelation 3:21 To him who overcomes I will grant to sit with Me in My throne, even as I also overcame and have sat down with My Father in His throne.
Revelation 3:22 He who has an ear, let him hear what the Spirit says…

If I don’t get back here again later, then I would like everyone who reads this to take the above offer as their personal “Christmas Presence”, from Love Himself.

HAPPY CHRISTMAS dear all! Always, David

Comments Off on Less than 20… Posted in Posts