Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Awesome article

Hey all you silent readers!

Read this awesome article of two nice guys from the States and what their doing.
WARNING - Potential warm fuzzies ahead!


Camp, God Gifts & Co.

So I went to 'Launch Camp' last weekend. It was the most awesome camp I'd ever been to personally, and I grew a lot and had a lot of fun as well. Ever since I've come home (to Dunedin), I've had so many questions and answers in my head. My questions were based on a revelation I had over myself about my abilities (helped by others too), and then understanding the reason for my 'talkativeness' through life. And with the answers I was like, ok now how do I use them in my life and church? The minute I figured out I'd recieved spiritual speaking gifts my mind went "whoosh..." of all the evidence I had over the course of my life to back them up. Which I cant be bothered typing out but if you want to know ask me in person. At camp when we were in prayer time I was filled with the holy spirit and I was told - yep, you're gonna be using your talking for ministry. At the time (being all confident in Gods plan) I said - great! when do I start? ...... This year.

Well, now Im back in Dunners, back to work etc. Im reading my bible like crazy and praying like mad but I'm now going through this phase I'll call "Having a Moses moment." Where Im starting to think WHAT??!! I don't think Im the right person to be involved with ministry. Im not the most moral christian in the world - why this morning I accidently let out a R13 curse word at the lady who ignored my indicating and stole my car park at a busy campus. Last night, I laughed my head off at a highly innappropriate song by Flight of the Concords regarding men and bumholes. And last night during a prayer meeting, someone was praying for a ban on couch burning and I whispered out aloud, "whats wrong with safe couch burning? Its almost a fun neccessity in winter. More like increasing the drinking age back to 21." Some people laughed, though Im sure the under 21 year olds didnt appreciate that.

See what I mean? But immediately I got a retort back from God saying ha! Look at Jonah, Moses and Rahab. And Im like alright ALRIGHT! No ones perfect. And I seriously am trying to be a good daughter. Ive been pretty good this week in relation to trusting him with money and food - being broke and all. Eating soup and frozen veges 3 times a day for a week was interesting...

Another answer I got at camp was mentoring. Mainly for me, though Im prepared to mentor if God puts the right person in front of me. I really want to meet some old folks from church but the thing with groups at church is that they're all very segregated. A pain in the butt really, but theres a ladys night out thingee being run by church at Nanking Palace in a few weeks and I thought great opportunity! I dont have the money but thats ok - Can you help me find 21 bucks Dad? Cheers) But last night practically everyone at life group said they wouldnt go - whining about the 21$ cost and how they wanted something cool like 4wdriving instead like what the boys had. Now hearing stuff like that gets me into a verbal rampage especially when they all verbally agreed that getting a mentor would be cool. HELLO??!! Ladys night out - awesomely older people to meet - eating awesome chinese food at (what Ive heard to be) at a nice restaurant??!! Why cant people draw the dots together for crying out loud?

I may be a sinner. But I say sorry, and I think that entitles me to use my god gifts of speaking encouragement to those who are using terrible negative excuses against Gods way of giving to our needs of serving one another in a fun environment. Some people dont know a good thing in front of them even if it dances naked in a tea cozy in front of them. (No, thankYOU JK Rowling for that wee gem)

Im seriously considering giving a 30second lecture about it, this comming Sunday service and Im scared off my tosh.

These are my two God gifts Im 95% sure Ive got. (Still need to work on interpreting tongues). If you want to look up yours the website is below. And for more info on how to use them I really recommend you read 1 Corinthians in your bible.


Encouragement (Speaking Gift) - The special ability God gives some to offer comfort, words of encouragement, hope, and reassurance to discouraged, weak, or troubled Christians in such a way that they are consoled.
People with this gift:
- come to the side of those who are discouraged to reassure them and give them hope
- emphasize God's promises and confidence in his will.

Romans 12:6-8
Titus 1:9
Acts 11:23-24
Acts 14:21-22
1 Thessalonians 2:11-12
1 Thessalonians 5:9-11

Tongues (speaking & interpreting)

Tongues (speaking) - The special ability God gives to some to speak prayer or praise in a language they have never learned or to communicate a message from God to His people. The special ability God gives to some to speak in a language not previously learned so unbelievers can hear God's message in their own language.

Tongues (interpreting) - The special ability God gives to some translate the message of one who speaks in tongues.

If tongues is spoken without an interpretation, the speaker is edified. If tongues is interpreted, it is for the edification of the church body.

People with this gift:
- may receive a spontaneous message from God which is made known to His body through the gift of interpretation
- may interpret a message from the Holy Spirit through someone else speaking in tongues
- communicate a message given by God for the church (if there is someone to interpret)
- speak in a language they have never learned and do not understand
- worship the Lord with unknown words too deep for the mind to comprehend
- experience an intimacy with God which inspires them to serve and edify others
- speak in tongues as a private prayer language
- when used in a group setting, an interpretation must take place, or else the one speaking tongues should remain silent.

1 Corinthians 12:7-11
1 Corinthians 12:28-31
1 Corinthians 14:1-40
Acts 2:1-12
Acts 10:44-46
Acts 19:1-7
Mark 16:17
Romans 8:26-27
1 Corinthians 13:1

(courtesy of www.kodachrome.org/spiritgift/refer.htm#Encouragement)

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Update on the money situation -

Nothing out of the ordinary happened. Truth be told my mum gave me the funds. I know not very exciting but hey, use what sources are given to you.

Gotta go to camp now :D

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

The Game of the Royal Way

I bet anyone who reads the above title is wondering "what the..?"
Its not really a game - its more like this test of faith experiment this guy called Brother Andrew did in the fifties when he was a poor student at a non funded missionary school in Glasgow. Heres a link to his story http://www.sermonillustrator.org/illustrator/sermon5/royal_way.htm
So anyway, I have this guys autobiography called "Gods Smuggler" and a lot of stuff in the book has been poking me in my heart lately, the main one being obedience to God. Im pretty sure Im not the only christian who does this, but I have a nasty habit of listening to Gods advice (which Im lucky to hear loud and clear most days), and ignoring it with my own plan which I think is ultimately better. I know I know, how stupid can I get!? I have been snubbing my one true parent who knows me better than anyone and knows how things will turn out far better than I do. Its not always been like this. In my teens I was a pretty decent soldier in Gods army. I didnt evangelise or do impressive sermons etc but I did have incrediable trust and faith in God which has worn off somewhat now that Im not suffering in a Job like manner besides other things.

So anyway, back to my main point. Im comming back slowly and while doing this Im trying to figure out what God wants for me this year. So when I wrote my goals for this year in a recent post I made a kind of contract about socialising more which Im getting a definite thumbs up from God - but as Pastor Paul told us last week - contracts with God often have smallprint that we humans dont bother reading. Well, I figured out this morning what the smallprint was about - obedience.

So heres my story so far this week. Last week I stayed with my family up in Christchurch. In order to do this I left my car on campus down here in Dunedin. Two days ago, on my last day in chch I remembered about my car and started worrying about the potential state it would be in when I got back (this is north Dunedin folks - a cheap but not safe worthy place to keep a car). So I started praying and on the day I traveled back down to Dunedin I made a deal with God and it sounded like this

"Dad, I know it was stupid leaving my car on campus for a week without a steering wheel lock but what Could I have done otherwise at 11am on a Monday? I had no money for a taxi from my house and finding a carpark was enough of a nightmare anyway. The likelihood of my car being towed, nicked, burgled, burnt is overwhelmingly high, SO I'll make this deal with you. If my car is safe and sound where I left it, I will do everything in my power to get myself to this church camp this weekend which I personally dont know if I want to go to. Even though I have two days to make $35 which I dont have and I am also (I think) due to start work this weekend. Thats about it. Amen, cheers."

So I get to Dunedin, and lo and behold! My car is still there untouched after being left for a week on one of the dodgiest streets in North Dunedin. I thought OH MAN!! Now I HAVE to go to this camp!
Freaking out but nevertheless pleased my car was still alive I drove to a bible study meet only to find it wasnt on but was otherwise invited by the occupants of the flat to partake in some eating of ice cream. Does Melody turn down ice cream? NO! :D Plus I got this very distinct feeling that God had his hand all over this weird meeting of random strangers.
Now seeing as I have two days to get 35 bucks and a sleeping bag, the first thing on the agenda I would have done would be to sort out if I could forgo any weekend work I was given - but no....
I was with these nice people chatting about camp when God poked me on the shoulder and said

"Oi ask them if they have a spare sleeping bag, you never know... (chuckle). I mentally poked him back saying Oi yourself, Im gonna look like an arse if I get a sleeping bag then have to return it cos work wont let me off for the weekend, besides why would they give a stranger their sleeping bag when they probably want to use it themselves. God poked me back and said Stop talking dribble and trust me on this. Trust me trust me trust me. I says ALRIGHT alright!! Gawd!! Yes? Oh sorry bad use of a 21st century colloqulism, should really stop saying that. Yes you should."

I bet you know where this is going. Yes I got a sleeping bag - a really good quality one I might add. Back in my car, I sang my favorite worship song. It didnt cross my mind til I got home that cars arent sound proof and I just laughed. And went to bed feeling good that God loved a sinner like me.

Part two of this story, continued on this morning when I was driving to poltech via work. I was having another squabble with God about what to say to work.

"Melody, you will be allowed to go. Yeah sure but I'll get a massive lecture in return for wasting their time on roster scheduling, maybe I should use the 'death of a relative' excuse. Well, daughter thats a pretty low way to go, and should you do it, your camping experience will be tainted by your guilt of how you got there in the first place - by lying. Drat.., Puh puh pleeease, God can you change their hearts about not wanting me to go? If you let them let me go, I promise to put up with whatever they throw at me so long as I can go. I was being a weak sod before, sorry."

The outcome of this made me more gobsmacked than yesterdays sleeping bag issue. My supervisor, who is exactly like my old supermarket supervisor - someone who could make my life at work pretty nightmarish if I pissed her off. I walk up to her and asked to talk about the roster, so she took me out back and what do you know, I dont even have to work on Saturday or Sunday, only Friday. I asked her if I could reschedule that friday shift, she said yeah sure how bout this Saturday?...

The moment of truth....

I uhh.. err.. cant work this weekend cos I have to go away for a church camp.
Oh thats fine, You willing to work Monday instead?

I can still hear God chuckling at me... I feel stupid lol.
Good things happen when you're obedient to God. Now THAT is The Royal Way

PS I'll let all you silent readers know what happens in my God quest to find money tomorrow.


Monday, March 23, 2009

To tai chi or not to tai chi...

My mum dragged me along to her tai chi class tonight. The teacher is a guy I recognise but I couldnt remember his name. Anyway the guy shook my hand and again dragged me to the forefront when I stated I was a spectator and said "nonsense!" As per usual, I immediately felt stupid and embarressed in the first five minutes but I was doing as he said and after a little while I was doing this exercise that reminded me of an ancient mayan sun worshipping/mexicanwave thingee, and I started feeling SO RELAXED. And everytime I bent over my fingertips would get pins and needles which actually felt more nice than annoying. At that moment the teacher says " by now you should feel the energy want to FLOW out of your fingers..." I thought - wow thats quick. But for the majority of it I was frustrated, trying to focus (which Im not good at) and at the same time I was thinking man this is so good for me, I should really do this on a more regular basis.

Thats the thing people have to know about me - I can be the most commited person on any task/ goal I want to achieve if its intellectual. And I expect results consistently. The catch is that my archilles heel is sports. Im a commitment phobe. This is exactly why after nearly three years with my boyfriend, I have never joined up to his kung fu. Dont get me wrong, I LOVE KUNGFU - watching it that is. I absolutely love going along to his classes and watching as well as gradings, tournaments etc. I learn a lot. I enjoy sitting there theorizing as to how people could improve or why exactly they cannot put their foot through a piece of wood. Most of the time I know Im wrong as Cody usually mutters under his breath "...aww hes doin it wrong.. he should be doing it ...."

Anyway, im getting off track. After the lesson, I said to mum "was it the green tea or do I feel perky?" and she said "nah its the class." Plus the teacher was really nice and helpful and he stood in front of me while I was doing this centre of gravity movement thingee and he corrected me and said if I practiced and got good it would help my upper back which over the past two years has quickly gone out of whack from typing long hours. It was easy theory to grasp but in application it was bloody hard.

Plus the fees are cheaper than kung fu...

Its a toughie... Should I do it? My traveling around a lot doesnt help even though theres a chans martial arts all over the north island. Oh I dont know...

Thursday, March 19, 2009

These are the coolest motivational tidbits Ive seen in a long time and I felt loads better reading them:

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Hammy vs ?????

I know I said that the Pixar creation of the character Hammy is like discovering the animal version of me but lately its been getting a bit different. Being highly spiritual Ive been asking God what plans he has for me this year. I know what I want this year. Ive had five of the most boriest weeks of doing absolutely NOTHING in Dunedin. Most of the time is spent in my own little isolation of reading, doing jigsaws, sleeping 10 hours every day, driving to polytech just to use the internet where nothing interesting happens on my facebook and the only emails I get are dodgy (but very funny) forwards from my boyfriend in chch and spam.
Ive got a plan of what I want to do this year and its a massive list in this order:
  • Get a much better job than bloody McDonalds
  • Pay off my second overdraft
  • Pay my debtors back ie family
  • Go swimming more
  • Complete my leftover papers at polytech
  • Clean up my OT portfolio
  • Study up on mental health and community placements
  • Become a regular blood donor
  • Go to more church camps
  • Get back in contact with Salmond College friends
  • Get started my charity of cleaning up historical graves started
  • Do some genealogical research
  • Get my full licence
  • Start memorising scripture that I like
  • Join 'Critic's book review team (still a maybe)
I cant think of anymore to be honest. The main point Im trying to get across is that all these activites make me sound like a spoilt sloth and Im being honest in saying I actually do have the time for all of these activities. The reason I havent been doing anything and thus getting depressed is all because of lack of money. It took me ages to actually get a job but I had no idea the process at McDonalds would take SO LONG!!

One of the hardest things in returning to an extra year in Dunedin (a city I dont want to live in), a year of doing a lot of personal activities is reminding me of my lack of friends. Quite frankly I did not see this comming over the past few years. I move around so much that it has been hard to maintain friendships not to mention make friends while working full time at placements around the country while being in an incrediably full on polytech degree course. I had/have my boyfriend and my family. I learnt from experience at highschool that "friends" are an added stressor. And in dunedin its been very hard to find friends who are like me in their spiritual walk. I find it difficult to maintain patience with fellow christians who preach to me the evilness of my relationships and lifestyle. Its highly possible that God does want me to achieve more and work harder at witnessing to those around me, but in my life that is harder than it looks. My family is more lasse faire and run by the "walk the talk" rule, in fact - scripture in my family is a more private thing done only by ourselves for ourselves. The majority of my family hence do not go to church except for myself on a regular basis. This why I have this internal fight with other christians. I agree with them but my life and experience says otherwise. Majority of them were raised in loving sheltered christian 24/7 families. I wasnt at all. My life was like that of the prophet Daniel. All prayer and bible study was done in secret and I despite comming out a better person than before, I definitely had lions den experiences.

But enough about that - what Im trying to get at is how hard this socialising is for me. And Im hoping that with joining a few clubs and whatnot I'll get there.
So at the moment Im feeling more Eeyore than Hammy

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Ive been tagged for a book quiz thingee!

Which book do you irrationally cringe away from reading, despite seeing only positive reviews?
The Secret by Rhonda Byrne. I cant BELIEVE that Oprah recommended this book! I admit I could have some bias being a christian but I really do think "thinking positive thoughts to encourage good stuff to happen to you" is a load of shit and the author just wanted to make a quick buck from doing a new age self help book. Some people will believe anything..

If you could bring three characters to life for a social event (afternoon tea, a night of clubbing, perhaps a world cruise), who would they be and what would the event be?
Ron Weaseley because I love his blunt but humorous personality; Hawkeye Bonner for his cool stories and old fashioned logic and Ayla so she could teach me how to skin and cook animals and show me how to do stuff with herbs.

(Borrowing shamelessly from the Thursday Next series by Jasper Fforde): You are told you can’t die until you read the most boring novel on the planet. While this immortality is great for awhile, eventually you realise it’s past time to die. Which book would you expect to get you a nice grave?
Northhanger Abbey by Jane Austen. It is the only one of her books that I seriously did not enjoy and thought the plot and characters were incrediably boring. I love the other books though. Its just that I found this book a massive disappointment compared to its counterparts.

Which book have you pretended, or at least hinted, that you’ve read, when in fact you’ve been nowhere near it?
War and Peace. Im used to reading classical literature but Ive never actually finished that book - I keep trying though. Its one of those books you cant read in bed and you have to focus which Im no good at at night.

As an addition to the last question, has there been a book that you really thought you had read, only to realise when you read a review about it/go to ‘reread’ it that you haven’t? Which book?
I cant recall this ever happening to me as I remember all books Ive read and definitely which ones I havent.

You’ve been appointed Book Advisor to a VIP (who’s not a big reader). What’s the first book you’d recommend and why? (if you feel like you’d have to know the person, go ahead of personalise the VIP)
Holes by Louis Sachar. Its one of the most fantastic childrens books out there that adults can thoroughly enjoy as well. It has an easy plot and awesome characters and a good ending, plus its not a big read either. Whats not to like?

A good fairy comes and grants you one wish: you will have perfect reading comprehension in the foreign language of your choice. Which language do you go with?
Ooh thats a hard one, either Greek, Hebrew or Latin. I would love to use any of them to read old biblical texts or if I happen to go overseas and explore an old Italian library or something.

A mischievous fairy comes and says that you must choose one book that you will reread once a year for the rest of your life (you can read other books as well). Which book would you pick?
Pride and Prejudice. I read it so often Ive practically memorised it anyway and I never get sick of the storyline

I know that the book blogging community, and its various challenges, have pushed my reading borders. What’s one bookish thing you ‘discovered’ from book blogging (maybe a new genre, or author, or new appreciation for cover art - anything)?
Havent really "discovered" anything new to do with books through blogging to be honest.

That good fairy is back for one final visit. Now, she’s granting you your dream library! Describe it. Is everything leatherbound? Is it full of first edition hardcovers? Pristine trade paperbacks? Perhaps a few favourite authors have inscribed their works?
I picture my library having at least two big bay windows and plenty of light. The biggest want is the majority of the wall space covered in shelving from the floor to the ceiling with a revolving ladder around the whole room. I'd want all my well read or classical books in protective hardcover and have them all by topic then author. Thered be bean bags and nice comfy couches and a harry potterish fireplace and giant paintings of ancestors, famous people I admire.

I won't tag anyone specifically for this, but if you're reading consider yourself tagged.