Living in a Field of Hats

some ramblings and reflections on working with students in Herts and Beds.

God’s Good Gifts – 10th June June 10, 2012

Filed under: Mission Trips — Sarah @ 2:36 pm
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Photo: I do love summer teams but love late night form filling for visas less! Thursday evening found me sat on my living room floor surrounded by forms, passports, photos and a million other things. Emily and I were finalising the application forms for our summer team’s visas. It didn’t take long (approx 3 seconds) for Emily’s head to drop onto the coffee table as we realised the task we had before us. And so we prayed. We prayed specifically that there would be no issues in submitting our forms, that we have wisdom as to what to write for certain sections, and above all we prayed for joy in doing it.

It was a long evening, with many repetitive tasks (there’s only so many times you can write in insurance details without going cross eyed) And yet there was real and genuine joy … even when we discovered that one application was missing a photo (mine!). It resulted in a late night trip to Tesco’s photo booth- but alas it’s switched off overnight! Luckily, even though Hatfield only has a population of around 18,000, we have two 24hour supermarkets, so the ASDA photo booth saved the day (well night)!

Friday morning saw us on an early train bound for London. We prayed again at the tube station – this time for there to be no issue with the invitation letters and that we’d have submitted the forms by 10.30am. Roll on to 10.31am – Emily’s happy dance (well out of the way of the embassy’s CCTV!) in celebration of having had submitted all of the forms with no bureaucratic issues. Amazing.

This is this week’s God’s Good Gifts – each and every thing we asked for was granted to us. And more besides. We were dealt with by the most lovely helpful embassy worker ever (in stark contrast to last year!), we got to spend sometime together rejoicing in what God had done, we had members of this summers team, and last summers team praying for us whilst we were in the office, desperate to know what had happened. Those twelve hours this week had their stresses, but they were the clearest demonstration of the gospel and unity. I’ve literally been left astounded by God’s great kindness!

We’re praying for the visas all to be granted this week – if you pray we’d love you to pray for us! If you want to find out more about our trip then leave your email in the comments and I’ll send you the updates!

 

God’s good gifts … 5th May May 5, 2012

Filed under: Christian Life — Sarah @ 8:30 pm
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I have a feeling that although this is a new blogging venture, it’s not necessarily going to be easy to pinpoint the things from within the last week that have been God’s good gifts! And yet, I know there’s thousands, from each breath to unexpected contact from the wider Christian family.

So, after great thought and mind wracking, here’s this weeks top three!

1) Coffee – stereotypical of a Christian worker I know. The day before my stepdad died, back in February, he and my mum brought down an old espresso machine which had been gathering dust in their attic. Sadly he died before he ever got to see the pleasure that a shot of espresso brings me on a rainy morning, but now each time my day starts with coffee, it starts with the memory of a man whom I miss.
2) My new(ish)-to-me car – driving a car that doesn’t feel like it’s head gasket is about to blow and that isn’t helping me to know the local Kwik Fit guys better, is a dream. Add in central locking and power steering and I’m set!
3) Church Family – I feel really blessed to be part of a church family who truly care. Who ask me how I am, and expect more than ‘fine’, who keep asking how I am and more than anything invite me in to share their lives. Not just on a Sunday, but seven days a week.

 

Celebrating God’s good gifts May 1, 2012

Filed under: Christian Life — Sarah @ 8:11 am
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We’re going through Ecclesiastes at chuch at the moment, and I’m really enjoying the chance to look closely at the whole book. On Sunday we reached chapter 3 and look at ‘time’ and how there is a time for everything. The real challenge for me came from verses 12-13 …

I perceived that there is nothing better for them than to be joyful and to do good as long as they live; also that everyone should eat and drink and take pleasure in all his toil—this is God’s gift to man.

It made me realise just how rarely I take pleasure in the everyday good gifts God gives me. And so, here begins a new regular blog. Each week, I’m going to blog about things God has given in the preceeding week, to see the good that God does bless me with on a daily basis midst the things that seem more pressing. The good gifts in and of themselves are not the end, they’re not the thing that will ever give me true meaning but that reflect the gracious and loving character of the amazing life giving God.