Quidentity

I am not who I think I am

Nor am I simply what you want me to be

How I perceive myself to be, this is only part of me,

And what you see when you look at me, I can never fully know

Only the glimpses that you may show to me

My reflection in your eyes

that’s helping me grow, slowly

or perhaps not.

.

But what you see is not all of me either

All of us weave a

tangled web

of which quite little is outward thread

And the mess that we’re hiding

can be what’s most exciting.

But some feel this unsightly

so we tidy it quietly

and pretend we’re no more embroidered than an Amish nightie.

When secretly we’re more like lace lingerie.

So before you tire of me

Remember:

My identity is the entire me

And there is

plenty

more than meets the eye.

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Pot, kettle, jar of clay

I know we’re both somewhat losers, a mess of bloodied bandages, soul bruises and injuries

(self-inflicted as much as not).

And maybe I’m but a blackened pot.

Look, I know it’s tough and confusing and it hurts and you’ve had enough of uncertainty and pain

and you want to stay where you’ve lain in the messy bed which you’ve made

and never want to open your wounds to anyone again – I know.

And God knows I’m probably the last person you’d pick to do this job,

but we know that God often picks that last person and they do the job best.

Because they understand, like Gideon, it’s not from them, this treasure in their chest

that they are just a jar of clay

yet maybe,

just maybe they can show the other how they shine.

~

2 Corinthians 4:7-9 (NLT)

We now have this light shining in our hearts, but we ourselves are like fragile clay jars containing this great treasure. This makes it clear that our great power is from God, not from ourselves. We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed. We are perplexed, but not driven to despair. We are hunted down, but never abandoned by God. We get knocked down, but we are not destroyed.

(The Message)

If you only look at us, you might well miss the brightness. We carry this precious Message around in the unadorned clay pots of our ordinary lives. That’s to prevent anyone from confusing God’s incomparable power with us. As it is, there’s not much chance of that. You know for yourselves that we’re not much to look at. We’ve been surrounded and battered by troubles, but we’re not demoralized; we’re not sure what to do, but we know that God knows what to do; we’ve been spiritually terrorized, but God hasn’t left our side; we’ve been thrown down, but we haven’t broken.

Proverbs 32

Epilogue: the man of noble character

10 A man of noble character who can find?
    He is worth far more than Bitcoins.
11 His partner has complete trust in him
    and lacks nothing in their relationship.
12He brings her support, not harm,
    all the days of her life.
13 He is the master of DIY and technology
    and works with eager hands.
14 He is like the delivery driver,
    bringing food from the big supermarket.
15 He gets up while it is still dark out;
   he fetches fresh coffee for his family
    and breakfast for his overnight guests.
16 He views a house and rents it;
    he invests his money in a place to practise hospitality.
17 He sets about any job determinedly;
    his arms are strong for his work.
18 He sees that his saving and investments are profitable,
    and his electricity meter does not go out at night.
19 In his hand he holds the tools of several trades
    and he clings tightly to the wisdom of the scriptures.
20 He opens his heart to the poor
    and extends a welcome to the lonely.
21 When hard times come, he has no fear for his household;
    for all of them are well prepared.
22 He makes furniture for his apartment;
    it is well furnished and stocked with many bookcases.
23 His wife is respected at the school gate,
    where she takes her place among the friendliest of the mums.
24 He takes on mentees and teaches them,
    and supplies the youth group with a volunteer.
25 He is clothed with strength and dignity;
   he can laugh at the days to come.
26 He speaks with wisdom,
    and good advice is on his tongue.
27 He watches over the affairs of his household
    and does not eat the bread of idleness.
28 His godchildren call him blessed;
    his girlfriend also, and she praises him:
29 ‘Many men do noble things,
    but you surpass them all.’
30 Charm is deceptive, and hotness is fleeting;
    but a man who fears the Lord is to be praised.
31 Honour him for all that his hands have done,
    and let his works bring him praise in his community.

Holy Day

Come away, weary soul
Drink in this mile wide sky
And soak yourself in sun.
It’s time for your vacation.

Gorge yourself
Run through the fountains
Laugh in the sparkling rain
Bathe in the extravagance
He lavishes on those he loves.

There is Sabbath for everyone
In His good sweet timing.
Turn on the Out Of Office
Without fear or guilt
For you are worth SO much more
Than all you produce or sell or teach
Yes, you sow much less than you reap
And that is exactly as it should be.

Stop; just to see the flowers
And gaze at the mountains and the sea
This land was not laid in vain
It sings and whispers
of the most generous of loves
A beauty strewn like the stars,
Like the jewels of a bride
Who beams to speak of her groom.

This day
Was set apart
For you.