Friday, February 12, 2010

Life in the Fast Lane.

I guess many people would call normal life the fast lane. However I still feel as though I am in the middle lane even though I work everyday and do all the same things I am sure many other people do. Sometimes I think slowing down is a frame of mind. Can you slow down your mind enough in order to enjoy life, the people you share it with and then fun things you get to do (I get to do fun things in my job as a teacher)? So I have been living normal life so far I guess. Mortgage, job, renos...but yet somehow life is NEVER normal!! I am married to Nolan so that is certainly one huge reason that my life is often diverted from normal, but there's more. God is so far removed from normal. He's a mystery and he's in my life so there is no normal, there is always discovery and then more mystery. Who is this God that loves me? I don't understand him. how can we? He is eternal and I can't even wrap my mind around that concept!! EEEeeeeek! The idea of forever is foreign to me and then add the fact that God always was and always will be blows a fuse in my brain. heart loves him, my spirit adores him and my soul is often at odds with him but submits to some growing degree to him. Submit is such a weird concept. It carries so many negative connotations with it and people often bristle at the idea of it. I certainly did when I was younger, but when you are confronted with unsurpassed love, it becomes a question of how can I NOT submit. When someone loves you SO fully and want only your best and they say " Go do this" I can trust that person because they love me. I know that humans betray our love and our trust, but God never does so his love is always present and he is always trustworthy.

Wow this entry is so random. to continue on in randomness...I am taking a yoga class. It's good, but my knee is bugging me. I also started reading Jesus in the Lotus and so far it is weird. That's all I have to say.

Saturday, November 08, 2008

Marriage and teaching.

I just need to write a quick little note to say how much I love being married to the man of my dreams.  He is kind, thoughtful, conscientious, funny, affectionate and he often thinks of my well being before he thinks of his own.  So I am in good hands and am well cared for.  

This September I began teaching at an elementary school.  It's a really hard job.  I could see that it was a hard job while I was student teaching, but it's beyond what I had imagined.  It is the most difficult and challenging job that I have ever taken on.  I may sound like a masochist, but at the same time I enjoy it in some weird way.  It's not just that there are great kids because often they are very challenging, but it is because it is the job that God has given me and when you work hard and do your work as unto the Lord and not for man (in the Bible somewhere), it is rewarding and it gives you strength and resources that you didn't know you had.  As well, God wired me to want work that challenged my mind and gave me opportunities to learn and grow.  Teaching is a great job for just those reasons.  A teacher NEVER really arrives at a point of having reached perfection or being a master teacher or something of that nature.  You can always learn, you can always improve and any decent teacher knows that and knows that you must always reflect on your own work so you can continue to improve on it.  I have oodles of room for improvement, but I kind of feel like I am holding my own.

Back to the God giving me strength and resources for teaching and life.  First and foremost he gave me Nolan.  I cannot express adequately how Nolan has been a source of strength, encouragement and restoration for me as I have begun teaching.  Long hours and rebuilding the wheel is stressful and a new work location, new co-workers, a new home to unpack and settle into and a new marriage.  There were many days I am sure I would have cried in exhaustion and frustration during the first month of my new work if it hadn't have been for the love of God and the love of my husband.  I believe that right now I would have been a very discontent person and not very happy as a teacher and my life if it hadn't been for Nolan and his constant love and encouragment.  He has given me strength, his love has restored me and allowed me to face another day and all that comes with it.  Now I know that this may sound as though I have placed Nolan as an idol in my life, but wait...

I believe that God's timing is impeccable.  He gave me Nolan as a husband and His purpose in marriages is to reveal a greater degree of his nature and being to us through the intimacy of a Bride and Groom, because to Him, the Church is his Bride.  Earthly marriage is to be another beacon of light that shows the world who God is and how much he loves us.  I believe that God has taught me a great deal about HIS love through how Nolan and I interact as husband and wife because I now have this tangible expression of intimate love that reveals to me how God desires us, and thinks of us, and cares for us and I have been greatly encouraged and strengthened through it.  

I have to say that I highly recommend marriage, and when you allow God to choose and reveal you marriage spouse, it's such an amazing experience!!

God is good.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Pizza from Hell

On Friday night I went to Hell and back but stopped at Wendy's on the way. Mmmmhmmm. It's true. On Friday Tania and I drove the car down the road to the Wendy's drive through to pick up a spicy chicken combo. I had asked for an iced tea to go with my combo meal and ended up with an orange juice?!? I am not quite sure how that happens, but it did. Somehow drinking orange juice doesn't quite fit the bill when you indulge in fast food. Anyhow...this is all beside the point. The point was, that I went to Hell and back.

Hell Pizza Co. the name of one of the hottest pizza places around town here in Auckland. We stopped there to pick up some pizza that the flat mates ordered. Pizzas by the names of: lust, chaos, gluttony, and so on. Really quite disconcerting names however, the pizzas taste quite heavenly!!

Aaaaahhhh...speaking of gustatory delights, I was invited to breakfast this morning for a new combo I have never imagined putting together. I was invited to Leon and Hannah's for pancake/crepe hybrid with a mix of bananas and bacon topped with brown sugar and maple syrup. I personally thought the mix of bananas and bacon sounded quite revolting however it was quite the contrary; it was quite tasty!!

Now that is quite enough about food. I have to go and bake some cookies.

Thursday, March 27, 2008

Grease, calves and maybe the zoo I am once again writing from good ol' New Zealand still. The other night I came home (from next door) and low and behold, what did I see? On the wall was a nice green bug; it was a praying mantis!! I thought it was pretty exciting to see one. It sat on the wall and I immediately went and grabbed my camera to see if I could get a good shot of it. So me and the mantis had a nice little photoshoot. It had these serious bugging out eyes...and while I was taking pictures it turned its buggy little head and watched me. Freaky little bug. I don't know if they bite of anything, so I left it to enjoy the luxury of our wall while I went off to enjoy the luxury of my bed.

On another note...I bought a membership at the local community centre and have gone to workout and get buff. One of the trainers there recently wrote up a strength training program for me and I was on day 3 of the workout. It included standing and seated calf raises. No problemo! I used to do them all the time back in the day. They always have seemed kind of easy so I put on a good amount of weight. The next morning I could barely stand up properly!! When you sleep, the position of your calf muscles are in a shortened position and overnight they begin to heal in that shortened position. SO in the morning when you go to stand up and LENGTHEN your calf muscles you are TEARING the healing that has happened overnight and it is painful. So for 3 days now I have not been able to walk properly. I have been tiptoeing around because placing my heals on the ground is SORE! So needless to say, I have avoided the gym.

In the meantime, I have spent some good time with the neighbours. Leon, Hannah, Canaan, Josiah and Psalm. The other night we watched the movie Grease because I had never watched it before. Ever. Leon and Hannah filled me in on interesting Grease trivia as we watched the movie. Did you know that John Travolta was 19 years old and Olivia Newton John was 26 when they filmed the movie? Did you know that the black super tight pants that Olivia wears at the end of the movie had to be sewn on her? Have you ever caught all the sexual innuendos of this classic movie? The best part of our night was after the movie though. Hannah had pulled up a YouTube video of a newly married couple at their wedding doing a cheesy little choreographed dance number. That wasn't the best part. The best part came after that. We watched little videos of laughing babies!! It was so funny and cute! We were all laughing so hard at all the videos!! I highly recommend it!

Over the past few days I have been thinking about my trip home. My flight leaves in the evening and we travel overnight to SanFrancisco and land there in the late morning. I have 6 hours in San Fran before catching my connecting flight home to Calgary. The question is what do you do in San Fran for 6 hours after a 14 hour flight from the other side of the world during which you really don't get any sleep. SO, by the time you arrive, you've been awake for 20 some odd hours and feel like a broken toilet. What do you do? I keep thinking how great it would be to rent a hotel room for half a day (as if hotels do that) and SLEEP!!!! On the other hand I keep thinking it would be lame to just stay in the airport and wait out the time. I should go OUT and see some of San Francisco, or at least head to the zoo. BUT...what fun is that when you feel like garbage? What to do, what to do? Ideally my flight home to Calgary would be changed and leave at least 3 or 4 hours earlier than scheduled. Yeah, wishful thinking.

Well...I still have 6 sleeps (that's if I actually sleep on the plane) until I am HOME!

Wednesday, March 19, 2008

Finally...real homesickness

I have experienced this feeling before. I was in Brighton, England and I really wanted to come home. I kind of shut down a little bit. I don't want to wander around and experience the place where I am, I just want to pass the time quickly so I can go home. Don't get me wrong. I am still doing my thing here. Last night I went to weaving class even though I was ridiculously tired and I wove an awesome basket. I am still working on my stupid paper. I still go to the gym. I still enjoy the warm sunshine and love my neighbours and enjoy their children (who made a Harry Potter movie last Saturday and came over in the morning just before I was leaving to go to the street market, to ask me if I would be Lord Voldemorte...isn't that just priceless? I love being asked things like that by the cutest looking 4 year old with a pair of round glasses and a scar drawn on his face, and in his sweet innocent little voice...priceless). It actually reminds me of the time his older brother who is 6 asked me to go to his drama class with him. We wanted a different adult to be there than his mom. So he asked me and said that if I went I either had to be a fairy or a troll because that was who was in the play and being totally genuine told me I could be a troll because I looked like one. funny. Nolan did you know that you are marrying someone who apparently looks like a troll? Aren't you a lucky fella.'s time. It is time to go home. Unfortunately my plane ticket and the calendar don't quite agree with me and since I have not yet learned how to manipulate time....I can't do anything about it. I am trying oh so hard to be patient but as it turns out, I am actually not an incredibly patient person. I have even resorted to what I used to do while running laps for trial times when I used to try out for Team BC for field hockey. As I ran, I knew I had to run 12 laps. As I ran I would tell myself how many laps I had left to do. After one, I would say in my head, "11 left to go". As I began to get tired, I would change the method a bit and say I had completed lap 6, I would say to myself, "5 laps to after this one", so it SOUNDED as if I had less than 6 laps left to run. Well, that is exactly what I am doing now. Instead of saying I only have X amount of days until I go home, I say I have Y amount of days after this one. So it seems that April 1st is closer than it actually is, but 1o days sounds better than 11 days. AND 9 days sounds WAY better than 10 days (its a single digit). So there you have it. The inner thinkings and workings of Sherry for today.

In the meantime as I sit here and procrastinate from writing my paper, I keep checking to see if Nolan has returned home from Ontario and signed on to Skype so I can talk to him. I feel like a bit of a stalker, but it has been at least 6 days since I have talked to him and I am in extreme withdrawal. I was going to go to the MIT library and work on the paper, but I wasn't sure if they would have wireless just in case Nolan did sign on, so I have resigned myself to working at home. Do you think me pathetic? Oh well. I don't care. I love him and want to talk to him. Priorities people, priorities.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Sunny days keeping the clouds away.

I am verifiably in certified countdown mode. How many sleeps until I get to see Nolan at 11pm ish on Tuesday, April 1st? The number is getting smaller and smaller, but not fast enough for my liking. Time is moving sloooowwwwllly like molasses in January. It will make coming home all that much sweeter I guess.

I actually had a great blog entry typed up but I hit some random button and it left. I despise random buttons. It's more interesting when random buttons are things like ejection seats or are the 'on' button for a siren or something, but as an erase button on the computer? Lame, very disappointing actually and extremely annoying. is a rather sunny day not unlike many of the days that I have had since being here. i don't think the temperature has dipped lower than maybe 21 degrees during the day. I know just the other night when I went to bed at 11pm it was still 21 degrees out. Actually yesterday after coming home from the beach (where I was chaperoning two 4 year olds) it started to cloud over and I was jumping on my bike to come home and it started to spit. Hanna joked and wish me a good ride home. ride home was not in the spitting rain but it was in the torrential rain! It was nice! It was still really warm out, the raindrops were so large that it seemed as though it would only take 5 raindrops to effectively soak you. I was drenched by the time I got home (a 10 minute bike ride), and I had a huge grin on my face!

Anyhow, it is a gorgeous day outside right now and I am going to Pacifica Fest just down the road. I can actually hear it from here. Drums are beating and it's catching. It is a celebration of Pacific Island cultures and it is going to be fun! I am going to take my camera (that I still don't know how to use properly) and take some pics and I am going to hope I don't get a sunburn and stupid tan lines.

I hope that tomorrow is as nice as today because I am going to head off to R.......Island which used to be a volcano and hike up it and check out the crater and take more pictures.

When will I actually do my homework? Maybe just for once it will do itself.


Thursday, March 13, 2008

I caught part of a korero (talk) given by my neighbour Sam at the last Te Haerenga. We talked about all sorts of things, but Sam was always able to relate the scripture or topics to culture identity, being Maori (or Irish, or First Nations, Sri Lankan, Hebrew...) and to the ministry of home.

I am not even sure where to begin...on top of listening to him talk at the marae, I'm in a Bible study with him every week too...I should have been taking notes...hindsight is always 20/20. Anyhow...we're looking at was kind of chosen by default. Hanna (Sam's daughter and one of my other next door neighbours) asked a question about Nehemiah because she was reading something and it became our focus. There you go. Anyhow...Nehemiah is about rebuilding and that's what the Maori are doing in some many ways; rebuilding their cultural identity, rebuilding their language, their homes, their whanuas, and their values. It's hard work to rebuild especially when there is opposition like there was in Nehemiah.

So...why Nehemiah? Sam asked us that question and then said because he had vision. Vision. I feel as though I have met so many visionary people and that I had a pretty good idea what it meant to be visionary. Sam shed some light on the meaning of the word vision. He referred to the scripture that had the word vision in it (I forgot which one) and said that it referred to a scroll being unrolled and its contents being revealed and it meant (in this scripture...something about people being without vision....anyone?), "The unfolding of the mind, will and purpose of God". I like that. I want vision.


Then he was talking about when a couple of John's disciples asked him where he was staying and instead of saying, "oh, I live with my mom and dad over there and my dad and I have a carpentry shop", he said, "Come with me" and he took them there. Sam's purpose of pointing out this little tidbit was to share how important home is as a place (if not THE place) for ministry. Then he pointed out that a number of things Jesus did were in homes too...water into wine, healing the paralytic, meals etc. Home. Create a place where he can dwell and people want to come and spend time in your home. Not just the power of home but a sense of family and how it can heal people to see and live in and be in a sense of family.

Where do you live?

The next thing was about the shakers, feelers and insiders.

Shakers don't get to close to you, they may not even look at you, but just shake you a bit and then make their best guesses as to what you are like and what you need etc (gov't, sometimes the church, researchers). How would that make you feel?

Feelers still won't look at you, but they will get close enough to touch and poke, maybe ask a few good intentioned questions (that serve their own purposes of defining who you are rather than letting you tell them who you are or taking the time to actually get to know you). Maybe even be friendly just to get those answers too, and then leave.

Insiders are the people that actually take the time to have a relationship, get to know you, see and experience your life. YOU...are an know yourself. You know best (well God knows best, but you usually have a pretty good idea what you need etc. and what your life is really like).

I kept thinking of ministering to people in the world and wondering how often Christians have been shakers and feelers rather than insiders. Jesus was most definitely an insider. I hate to admit that I have been both a shaker and a feeler. I have stereotyped, judged, and misunderstood people.

What are you?

This was such a random post. Sorry. Random thoughts just have to come out sometimes.

What other random thoughts have I been having you ask? Well, I can't stop thinking about how many sleeps it is until I get to see Nolan (19) and I have thought about weaving and whether or not Canadian customs will let me keep the things I have made (it's plant material) and I keep wondering what the heck I am going to do for a 6 hour layover in San Fransisco after a 15 hour flight from Auckland. Yep. That's it for now.