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Updated: Jun 24, 2021

What a couple of weeks it has been since my last blog!

I’m sure you are all wondering how everything will pan out in the world and so am I, but I am hopeful. There are so many great podcasts out there to remind us that we have a hope and a future beyond our present circumstances. There is one particular podcast that I have really appreciated from Jesus Culture.

Banning Liebscher, the chap talking in the podcast, says that;

“Faith is not ignoring the mountain, in front of you, faith is recognising that there is a greater reality than that mountain.”

God sits on the throne above that mountain. Our hope comes from the Lord and He is the name above all other names. What a relief!

Often when we approach mountains, they can look pretty horrendous and un-climbable, but as you move onward and upward the way becomes clear. If you have the right equipment with you, a guidebook and map and compass then you are well prepared and everything is really rather manageable. Of course, the mountain experience is much more enjoyable when shared with other people and so is life.

I take so much comfort in knowing that God is above this mountain and that he can see the other side of it. He is my champion supporter and encourager and He has me in the palm of His hands. I am so thankful that He has such a good grasp on me and my situation.

Since a week or two ago, Amanda and my situation has changed in that our flights to New Zealand have been cancelled and their border is closed.

What does this mean? It could mean that we are delayed by a week, a month or perhaps even longer, I don’t know.

There is a phrase I like that says “Hope for the best, plan for the worst.” Why on earth would I ever hope for the worst? That’s the opposite of what hope is, that’s stupid and self destructive. But equally, I’m aware that there are things outside of my control and it is wise to have a plan in case they present themselves to me. Here in lies an opportunity…

Amanda and I have been dog sitting for the last few weeks and as such have been out for plenty of dog walks. Before the lockdown, we saw an increase in the amount of families down on the beach and spending time together. It was wonderful to see these families out and about enjoying each others company and exploring together.

Of course the reason they could go out in the middle of the day may have been because they couldn’t go to work, which is rubbish, but Amanda and I like to think of all the families that will look back on this time and not remember the hardships but the joy of being a family unit. Children and parents fully immersed in life.

Today is a very windy day and as I took the dog out for a morning spin I tried to pretend I was somewhere else. It was cold, gusty and empty outside; I only saw a couple of other people with their dogs.

I started to enjoy the ease at which I could wrap up in my outdoor gear, do a zip up, stick a beanie on and crack on towards my goal. I noticed a cross or x shape structure, like so many summit shelters, and aimed for that.

As I approached the sand kicked up like spindrift, it sleeted in a short burst and a gust knocked me off my path. I was nearly there. All of a sudden the wind stopped having an effect on me as I make it into the wind eddy of the shelter. Wahoo, success.

I then bravely step back out into the stormy conditions and battle onwards before turning around and heading home for coffee.

Where was I? Just down on the local golf course, next to the sea! But for a moment, I was high up on a rugged Munro, imagination isn’t just for children.

Wrapped up warm!

Now I’m back at home and I’ve had my one piece of exercise for the day (due to Covid-19 rules), I plan to attack my next challenge.

I can pick from a range of tasks that range from the usual everyday kind of tasks to the tasks/jobs/projects that fit into the “when I get around to it” bracket.

I can imagine that there will be so many DIY projects, art plans, cleaning tasks completed, in this time of lockdown, that will be completed by so many people within our nation. With a combination of getting through these lists, forced rest and a communal sense of being in this together, I really hope our nation will be better off because of this difficult time.

If you haven’t already, I would encourage you to find a podcast series, read a book that’s been gathering dust and start planning ahead to the post lockdown days.

Dream, plan, adventure, equip yourself, free yourself up to be ready to go full force back into the world, when we are allowed!

I have been struggling with the dreaming part.

Going from moving to New Zealand to only being allowed out once a day is quite a big step and actually feels rather like I’ve been defeated.

It’s been hard to get over the loss of our plans and pick myself up to manage and motivate myself, in this time, to really make the most of it.

How do I dream about what to do next when I don’t know when “next” will start? Surely it is survival mode and get through lockdown now? I have to tell myself regularly and Amanda has to remind me regularly of God’s promises to us. That he has a plan for us and that He came so that we might live our lives to the max!

If God knew this virus was coming, He definitely knew how we’d all get through it and how we could thrive through it. We just need to acknowledge that he is above this current mountain and keep our eyes fixed on Him.

Plus, do all the jobs that have been waiting in the wings for a time such as this!

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