2015 in review

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2015 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 590 times in 2015. If it were a cable car, it would take about 10 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

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My Spiritual Toolbox

Two years ago I attended a women’s empowerment seminar. The facilitator taught the participants techniques to utilise when we were feeling spiritually low. One which stood out for me was the concept of a spiritual toolbox. It was not the traditional toolbox, with hammers, screwdrivers, nails and wrenches. (I can’t believe I remembered those tools) Within the spiritual toolbox are the things (or reminders of the things) which we like the best in life. Touching, seeing even at times smelling them would transport us to a healthier space, filled with treasured memories and consequently renew our spirit.

My first toolbox was filled with vanilla incense, strawberry scented candles, a letter from my dad, a birthday card from my grandmother and two stones with the words “hope” and “wish” engraved. The facilitator shared with us that her toolbox was a playlist of her favourite songs and movies. The slideshow of images below is my interactive spiritual toolbox. You can create yours as well. Every toolbox is as unique as its owner.

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Anewday

 

Music

music God gift2

I have always had a love for music. Music has been my companion throughout my life. When times have been tough, music has been there to give me hope. When times have been wonderful, music has lifted up my experience to celebrate. Music has certainly been with me more than any person in my life.

I was born into a family whose life revolved around music. My father played the piano and my mother sang and played the guitar. These instruments were always in my house. As a little girl I loved to play the piano and pull at the guitar strings. Of course the sound from them was not refined and so my parents had the good sense to send me to music lessons.

The instruments I chose as a teenager were the clarinet, the piano and the voice. My piano instructor was a short fiery woman who would play Mozart, Beethoven and Bach and with every page turn, drag a puff of smoke from her mentholated cigarette. She claimed they smelt better. I thought she was awesome. My clarinet teacher was a round police officer, who was a strict disciplinarian but he was also a jovial character. I joined so many choirs I lost count of my instructors, but they all emphasized the importance of diction in the song.

BachMozart

Yet when I came home from school and went into the church, the organists were there. I sat at their feet and watched dumbfounded at the dexterity of playing the two pianos with your hands and the one large piano with your feet.

As a woman, I sang to my sons in the womb and established a connection of music with them. As a woman, I sang to establish a connection with my father who went to live in glory when I was 23 years old. As a woman, I sang to establish a connection with God the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. Music prepared me for life. It was the gift God gave me from heaven. When I was at my lowest in life, music lifted me higher as it gave me hope for the future.

music prayer

While I was at church with my younger son, who was only a month at the time, I held him close to my chest and closed my eyes and sang along with the congregation. My voice soared above the rest, not because I sang louder than anyone else, but because I sang from the heart. All of my emotions of happiness, sadness, anger and hope intertwined with the rendition of the song. At the end of the song, a gentleman touched my shoulder and said to me: “You sang beautifully.” If only he knew how much his compliment touched my soul. It was as if God used him to let me know that He loved me and everything would turn out well. I murmured my thanks and with my downcast eyes I blinked away the forming tears.

music makes us strong

Music saved my life. I continue to sing to my children, to my friends and to my God. He uses situations in life to make His children stronger. He disciplines those He loves so that they will be mature and complete. I will praise Him as long as there is breath in my body and in the life after that.

music language