From Russia With Love

By the sound of my title yes you would definately assume I was back in Russia (of course that is where half of the people back home think I am!! hehe)  alas I am not.  BUT I have found the most remarkable store ever created in Long Eaton that opened up recently, a Russian Foodstore called ‘Evelyna’s’!  woot woot!! Happily I say that, and unhappily I don’t know how long they will stay opened….but with my patronage hopefully for a while at least! Ahhh the joys of having russian dumplings, icecream, and carrot salad once again.  I just want everyone to know how much joy this brings to my life.

 

I am back to the normal routine of schools, clubs, brigade, and everything else that gets tossed at me.  So wonderful to be back after that little break.  I can already tell the difference in my attitude with how I treat the ‘opportunities’ I get to help with in the classroom.  At first I was struggling with those boys and it really was hard for me, because I would get soo angry and frustrated with them…especially when they treat me and the teacher so rudely.   I would love to say that I had “Christian-like” thoughts towards them during those times, but that would be a lie.  Now I look at them and all I can feel is love for them,  I’m so thankful that God has overflowing love that He gives us when we struggle the most to find it for a person.  

 

I continue to love helping out at William Sharp.  Ahh yes the joys of city kids, swearing, and pathetic sounding nasal American accents not coming from me.  People really are shocked when I tell them that William Sharp is my favourite class to help out with.  A guy from YFC (doing the same year out as I am) who is from Nottingham always had the impression of William Sharp teens as well….rock throwers,  basically nothing good.  I go into that classroom, and I see the potential they have.  You have to look past the outward stuff, the bad things people notice first, and when you do all you see is a girl or a guy just longing for someone to believe in them, to encourage and give them a chance.  The thing that frustrates me is that I can look across the school area, the areas that seem to be falling apart and well-used, and in the distance I see a college, that looks absolutely well-kept, up-to-date, and from what I hear one of the best colleges to go to in the Nottingham area.  What’s so frustrating is that none of the William Sharp teens really have any expectation of ever being able to go there, and the education they are getting is just enough so that they can pass the certain GCSEs they need to, they aren’t really getting a quality education.   It’s really shameful and quite sad.  I’m happy to say that I get to work with a wonderful teacher who puts stock into each and every one of the teens he works with, he cares for them and what’s happening to them outside school-life, plus he is presenting great opportunities to them with potential work experience.   All I hope is that each of the girls and guys take a firm hold of what is being presented to them, to prove the system and the stereotypes that they have been labeled wrong.  I’ve always believed this and still do, but if we don’t positively invest in the children and young people of today, who do we have to blame but ourselves for how our countries turn out in the future.   

 

The past week was tough for me, because I wasn’t feeling well at all.  It was hard for me to do all the activities and put on my normal happy persona.  When all I wanted to do sometimes was just lay in bed and stay there for hours on end.  Of course when I had my meeting with Rich he told me that I could have called him and said I wasn’t feeling well, reprimand number one.  I felt better by Saturday though.   The whole week though I kept reading Psalms, and verses like 143, 121, 131 would keep popping out at me.  Then on Sunday Pastor Adrian talked on 1 Kings 19 about Elijah being so weary and exhausted that one word from Jezebel made him literally snap and say ‘I have had enough, Lord, take my life..I am no better then my ancestors.’  Could you imagine how tired he had to have been?  Chapters before Elijah was so zealous, putting all he had into everything God told him to do.  During that time ELijah fell asleep and an angel came to him waking him and making him eat to get ready for the journey.  After Elijah traveled to a cave, God appeared to him, not in wind, an earthquake, or in a fire but in a gentle whisper He came. 

 

Everytime I imagine that chapter all I can think is how peaceful it must have been for Elijah, cause he was use to God using fire or something powerful to proclaim His presence, but instead He came to Elijah in a gentle whisper.  After that God provided Elijah with people to take over and care for the situations that had been presented earlier.  God also provided to Elijah, Elisha, to succeed him as prophet.   I just love how it shows God’s compassion and love towards Elijah when he was just so weary and tired, and how He took care of Elijah.  He could have reprimanded Elijah for the state he allowed himself to get in, but He didn’t. 

 

I’ve really been challenged also to put my complete trust in God, to just sit in His presence and soak Him in.  Last night I was up quite late because I just had all these thoughts going through my head with future unknowns, worries, and decisions that will need to be made.  It’s quite irksome really, especially when all I wanted to do was sleep.  My friend sent me a letter which I needed to read this week for sure and it really it affirmed everything I had been reading, the whole King’s chapter, resting in God, and completely trusting Him.   Sometimes it is hard completely trusting Him, because a part of that for me is giving up control which I do enjoy having at times.  But the thing is at the end of the day I really don’t have control.  It’s silly of me to think that I do. 

My friend Kyle had me listen to this song ‘Lead Me to the Cross’ by Brooke Fraser I put the lyrics in for you to read.

Savior I come
Quiet my soul remember
Redemptions hill
Where Your blood was spilled
For my ransom
Everything I once held dear
I count it all as lost

Lead me to the cross
Where Your love poured out
Bring me to my knees
Lord I lay me down
Rid me of myself
I belong to You
Lead me, lead me to the cross

You were as I
Tempted and trialed
You are
The word became flesh
Bore my sin and death
Now you’re risen

To your heart
To your heart
Lead me to your heart
Lead me to your heart

 

Sometimes I get so caught up in myself, my worries, the future….and I forget.  I forget that it’s not about me, and I remember all that God has done.  Fully humbled I lay the control down, and trust God.  I belong to Him.

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