THE CHRISTIAN WALK, The Simple Life, Walking with God

Helpless


I feel helpless

Broken

Lost

Uncertain

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It feels helpless

When people have no food

It feels helpless

When people have no transportation

It feels helpless

When people don’t understand

It feels helpless

That curfew is the only way to reduce interaction

It feels helpless

When law enforcement uses brute force

It feels helpless

When employers keep employees late

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It feels helpless

When the voice of God is unknown

It feels helpless

When His path is unclear

It feels helpless

When the people of God scatter

It feels helpless

When families have nothing to say to each other

It feels helpless

When people can’t live together

It feels helpless

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It feels helpless

When people are favoured at the expense of others

It feels helpless

When evil is celebrated

It feels helpless

When bad behaviour is rewarded

It feels helpless

When the needy are mistreated

It feels helpless

When the voice of the people is quashed

It feels helpless

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You say come to me all who are weary

You say there is hope for all

You say you see the hearts of men

You say you protect the needy

You say you are our hope

You say you are our reward

Right now…it all just feels helpless

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I know you are our true Father

I know you are the Righteous Judge

I know you are our Defence

I know you are our Strong Tower

I know you are our Protector

I know you are our Redeemer

Right now…it all just feels helpless

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I know you are the Plan

I know you are Yea and Amen

I know you are Everlasting

I know you are Immutable

I know you are Indefatigable

I know you are Ever-present

Right now…it all just feels helpless

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I still the fear and say…leave

I still the worry and say…leave

I still the atmosphere and say…calm

I still my heart and say…wait

I still my mind and say…wait

Helplessness you cannot stay

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I lift my eyes to the hills

My help is on its way

My hope is in the Lord

Maker of heaven and earth

He holds my foot steady

He keeps even as he doesn’t sleep

So helplessness your day is over

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My Father never sleeps

My Father never looks away

My Father doesn’t drop the ball

My Father never lets me fall

My father never walks away

My Father never changes His mind

Helplessness your day is over

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He keeps me

He covers me

He protects me

He preserves me

He restores me

He carries me

Helplessness your day is over

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From this day on and forever

Helplessness you have no place

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The Simple Life

Don’t Waste A Crisis.


Recently I was part of a webinar on crisis communication and it was totally intriguing. Why that webinar? I have decided to expand my range of knowledge and challenge myself to understand different aspects of work deeper. This ensures that once a week I do a webinar in a topic that interests me. So last week I did one in human resources and the one in crisis communication I mentioned earlier. In the crisis communications one, I heard a statement that shifted my axis and settled deep within me;

Don’t waste a crisis.

Stella Kiguta Nganga

A crisis is defined as a season of deep or intense difficulty and danger and the current covid19 pandemic fits that definition. We are facing uncertain times ahead with lockdowns taking effect across the world, overdoses from proposed medications, fear and terror about infection rates and tracing challenges, seemingly looming shortages and outages and the general uncertainty of the unknown. There have been and likely will be more job losses as companies grapple to find ways to keep alive and in reality, there are companies that will be brought to their knees and never recover.

Don’t waste a crisis is such a loaded statement because many of us waste crises.

How do we waste crises? Crises have the ability to strike us deaf and dumb, catch us in sticky mud like back cotton and keep us stranded. Crises shake our beliefs and desires as they strip away our sources of strength thus hinder our ability to walk forward and deal with life. I know it sounds odd to say that we can waste a crisis but think about it for a bit. Did others find themselves in crisis before us? Yes! Did they ALL survive? No! Who did? The ones who took a different look at life!

For many of us, our default setting when trouble or challenges come our way is to ask why or why me. How about changing the questions to why not me or who else should go through this? I know it sounds like madness but that small shift changes perspectives completely. It is a lot like the half full half empty perspective of the glass and that is what I want us to think about.

Every crisis has a lesson for each one who goes through so why not focus on that.

If there is a lesson in every crisis then can there be another way of dealing with it? Most certainly. When we say don’t waste a crisis we mean, learn all you can from every crisis that you may have the right tools for the path ahead. Why? Life beyond the crisis is never the same as life before it thus a new set of skills are needed to navigate this life. How do you navigate a path you have never been down if you haven’t developed a new set of skills to deal? You can’t.

How do we harness a crisis?

  • Shift Perspective: Challenges come to make us strong and the acceptance that there is something to learn shifts our ability to overcome and accomplish more.
  • Ask Questions: Questions are the best learning tools you have in your arsenal. Ask about root causes, trends, rising numbers, locations, patterns of communication, failures, successes and anything else you may be curious about. If you cant find answers from your questions, change the set of questions and keep asking no matter what.
  • Be keen: Keep your eyes peeled or open to see. What is there to see? Reasons for the situation, answers to questions, new phenomena, causes, challenges…anything that helped contribute to the situation, provided solutions and possible lessons.
  • Right Conversations: You will find that not many people see things the way you do and will either think you are mad or discourage you from this new perspective. When your mind shifts or begins to shift, find people who will challenge the thought process without demeaning your position. If you get dismissed, review the response and assess its validity but keep your ground on your thoughts, they will make sense
  • Reflect & Review: Take notes of key lessons, capture your key thoughts and assess them. Take time to think through it over and over until you see the realities coming to mind. Read others comments and ideas to grow your own but capture your thoughts that you can review and deepen them for growth.
  • Stop and Listen To God: Our sure radar is God for he never sleeps or slumbers nor forsakes us. His answers are sure and His word is reliable. His ways lead to life and His love is eternal. He is the answer to all our questions and His thoughts are so much higher than ours that we will understand more as He brings us clarity.

Remember, that every crisis make us bigger, better and badder. Remember that no matter where it comes from, we will come out better because we will never again waste any event in our lives. Remember that God has allowed this situation to build us up and make us stronger and He has the solution.

Photo by Tanya Gorelova on Pexels.com
The Simple Life

Lord Have Mercy On Us


Today is a designated day of prayer in Kenya, from wherever we are. Take time to really reflect on the realities of this nation and lay your heart bare before the Father that He may hear from heaven and heal our land for our destiny is tied to the destiny of Afrika and we must there RISE to the fullness of God and His Word

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Let’s raise our voices in thanks and praise for He

Is good & His love endures forever

Has given us life

Has a plan for the season

Has absolute understanding and awareness

Has preserved us this far and continues to watch over us

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Let’s raise our voices in thanks and praise for He

Is the shield around us; our shield and buckler

Is our glory and He lifts our heads

Has delivered and kept us alive through the generations

Is true to His word and watches over us

Is our refuge, our strengthen, our deliverer, our life & our salvation

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Let us raise our hearts in REPENTANCE for we have

Been unfaithful in our first love

Been unjust to our brothers and sisters

Ignored the widow, orphan & fatherless

Greedily looked after ourselves

Despised those of lower station than us

Cursed those with more than us

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Let us raise our hearts in REPENTANCE for we have

Stolen from our community

Ignored His ways and statutes

Loved & served other gods before Him

Lied that we love Him yet we love money more

Been driven by greed to doubt Him

Forsaken the call to share love

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Let us raise our hearts in REPENTANCE

Father look upon us in mercy

Have mercy oh Lord, Have mercy

Father look upon us in mercy

Have mercy oh Lord, Have mercy

Father look upon us in mercy

Have mercy oh Lord, Have mercy

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Father your word says if we confess our sins

Repent from the same

And turn from our wicked ways

You will hear from heaven

And heal our land

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Father look upon us in mercy

Have mercy oh Lord, Have mercy

For we are nothing without you

We will go nowhere without you

We are destined to fail without you

Father look upon us in mercy

Have mercy oh Lord, Have mercy

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For our greed and sin

WE ARE SORRY

For our selfishness

WE ARE SORRY

For our fear and doubt

WE ARE SORRY

For walking away from You

WE ARE SORRY

For our loose tongues

WE ARE SORRY

For our slanderous words

WE ARE SORRY

For our arrogance and ignorance

WE ARE SORRY

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Create in us a clean heart that desires only you

Renew a right spirit in us that will follow you

Renew our minds to Your word that is truth

Align our desires to yours that we would honour you

Where we thought we knew; teach us your way

Where we thought we were right; realign our thoughts

Where we felt we understood; restore our focus on you

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Father, have mercy on us as your people

Raise among us your remnant who will never leave your way

Raise among us a people in your image and likeness

Raise among us a people devoted to your word

Raise among us a people committed to you

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Father, have mercy on us as your people

For we do not know what to do

We do not know how to respond

We are broken vessels uncertain of the path

We are rudderless because nothing is working

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Father, have mercy on us as your people

For if you do not, who will be our guide?

If you do not how will we live from here?

If you do not, where will we go for help?

If you do not, how do we function?

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Father, have mercy on us as your people

Father, have mercy on us as your people

Father, have mercy on us as your people

Father, have mercy on us as your people

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Father, have mercy on us as your people

FORGIVE us for being arrogant and proud

FORGIVE us for anger and hate

FORGIVE us for lust and envy

FORGIVE us for ignoring the plight of others

FORGIVE us for bloodshed and destruction

FORGIVE us oh Lord FORGIVE us

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FORGIVE us for we have ignored our brethren

FORGIVE us for destroying your land

FORGIVE us for hoarding property and supplies

FORGIVE us for exalting ourselves

FORGIVE us for corruption and lies

FORGIVE us oh Lord FORGIVE us

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Have mercy on us oh Lord

Have mercy on us oh Lord

Have mercy on us oh Lord

Have mercy on us oh Lord

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Have mercy on us oh Lord

And heal our hearts

Have mercy on us oh Lord

And heal our minds

Have mercy on us oh Lord

And restore our souls

Have mercy on us oh Lord, Have mercy

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Have mercy on us oh Lord, have mercy

For we are a sinful people

Have mercy on us oh Lord, have mercy

For we are broken and shattered

Have mercy on us oh Lord, have mercy

For we are weak and easy shaken

Have mercy on us oh Lord, have mercy

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Have mercy on us oh Lord, have mercy

For we are nothing before you

Have mercy on us oh Lord, have mercy

For we have been unfaithful

Have mercy on us oh Lord, have mercy

For we have lusted after the things of the world

Have mercy on us oh Lord, have mercy

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Have mercy on us oh Lord

That we may correct our lives

Have mercy on us oh Lord

That we may walk in your ways

Have mercy on us oh Lord

And heal our land

Have mercy on us oh Lord, have mercy

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Have mercy on us oh Lord, have mercy

For without you we are nothing

Have mercy on us oh Lord, have mercy

For without your wisdom we are foolish

Have mercy on us oh Lord, have mercy

For you are our ONLY HOPE

Have mercy on us oh Lord, have mercy

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Have mercy on us oh Lord, have mercy

Have mercy on us oh Lord, have mercy

Have mercy on us oh Lord, have mercy

Have mercy on us oh Lord, have mercy

The Simple Life

Giants In The Land


The earth vibrated as they walked in

The air was thicker

The atmosphere more turbulent

Something was different

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Then they saw the cause

Huge specimens of men

Produce taller than them

Animals the size of men

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They were short in the sand

They felt totally intimidated

They knew they weren’t enough

They felt a very deep fear

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Yet two saw it differently

Two understood the power of God

Two refused to let go of His word

Two remained faithful and diligent

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Did they see the giants? Yes

Did they understand their size? Yes

Could their vision be different? Yes

Yet, two remained faithful and diligent

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Giants are tailored to create fear

Giants are tailored to challenge our view

Giants are tailored to show our thoughts

Giants are tailored to move our faith

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Giants are tailored to hide the view

Giants are tailored to shade the light

Giants are tailored to distract us

Giants are tailored to shift our lives

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Do we really believe God’s word?

Do we really understand our call?

Do we really know the way on?

Do we really know our God?

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Giants are tailored to make room

Room for a deeper knowledge of God

Room for a clearer view of God

Room for growth in faith

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Room for faith to explode into full view

Room to open the doors of hope

Room to build on the foundation of God

Room for God to be know

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Through the right lens and posture

Giants in the room are good

Giants in the room are for growth

Giants in the room are to build us

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There are giants in the land

Photo by Skitterphoto on Pexels.com
THE CHRISTIAN WALK, The Simple Life, Walking with God

The Anchor Holds


The last few months have been trying with the emergence of Coronavirus or Covid19. When it hit in December in China, most of us stood watching on the side-lines shaking our heads and saying how sad. We didn’t think it would cross the oceans let alone become a pandemic. Then it started moving and we watched it cross to Hong Kong, Iran, South Korea but still we weren’t too bothered until it reached Italy.

In our lifetimes, many of us have never seen an epidemic outside Asia and Afrika. We had HIV/AIDS in the 80’s and 90’s and Ebola more recently but the greatest impact was felt in the ‘third world’ as we are commonly called. This time it is totally different because Afrika has been spared the initial brunt of infection and death and the developed world has been ravaged in ways we cannot begin to understand.

The facts are that there are many infections and the most vulnerable ones are the elderly. The facts are that it is a viral pneumonia that the body has to fight. The facts are that the elderly and those with weakened immunity with underlying chronic illnesses are at greatest risk because what actually kills is the complications from underlying conditions. The facts are that the things all media houses are talking about is the infections and deaths but not those who recover. The facts are that the virus has no respect for persons, social position and wealth. True right?

So panic set in and hording started and it has gone south from there.

The fear and panic is what has my attention. It is tangible and palpable almost thick enough to cut with a knife. It is in every social media post and every new bulletin. It spikes when a presser is called by a health or government official and when a new patient is found. It rises when you go to the cupboard and see the packet of rice or the vegetables getting finished. It rises every few hours and it will continue to rise if we don’t find ways to deal with the fear.

Have I felt the fear? Yes. Some reading this would wonder why? Well, to be honest, as I watched the growing reach and rising numbers I couldn’t help feeling the fear for a bit wondering what was going on and why it was happening. I couldn’t understand why in this developed world such a pandemic would happen. I had watched a documentary on the Spanish flu a few weeks ago and the similarity between that and Covid19 were so insane. So yes, for a little while, I felt the fear and it almost became a crippling year.

My daily pattern is to watch international news as I work and so this fuelled the fear because it was the main story with different aspects and additions breaking all the time. Even the documentaries would be interrupted with updates and long winded conversations about the virus and its devastating nature, countries on lock down, people losing jobs and lives being forever changed. It rose to a peak very quickly and almost paralysed me before I pulled back to look at it. Yes, pulled back to look at it.

Was there another way of dealing with this fear?

Yes, there was another way. Remember the saying, feel the fear but do it anyway? I choose to analyse the fear that was building. Why was I so fearful? What did I stand to lose? As I looked within I begun to understand what was fuelling the fear. The very fact that I couldn’t determine how fast it would get here, would my nation suffer excessively in terms of people, economics and social realities. There’s also the matter of misinformation and fear mongering.

I needed to understand so I began seeking information on the situation; how many have died, how many have recovered, how many are in recovery. What are the conditions associated with rapid spread? What steps are countries taking to take charge? Who are the most vulnerable? What supplies are needed? How long are they setting quarantine? All the information I could find and a lot wasn’t being told publicly or as loudly as the scary side of the situation.

Simple things would save lives: wash hands with water and soap or use hand sanitiser, social distancing, less physical contact, get medical help if feeling unwell and isolate if you are confirmed.

The biggest thing that was scaring me was the reality that at least sixty percent of Kenyans and maybe Afrikans live on or below the poverty line and they would be the most exposed. Why does that bother me? Simple…they are our workforce. Do you have a nanny, housekeeper, gardener, security guard, driver, and caretaker? Where do you think they live?

Our people live in informal settlements with small houses without adequate ventilation, without running water and unable to afford hand sanitiser. They share bathrooms and toilets and are in such close quarters that if one gets sick, cross contamination is a given and guess whose house or workplace it is coming to?

While many are running around and hoarding, it is easy to forget those who cannot do the same. It is easy to be selfish and cater only to your needs and forget others need help. So if you have all the hand sanitiser and your gardener doesn’t have any, don’t you think it could come back to you? many of us cannot survive without our housekeepers yet we are not taking the care we need to about their lives and their health.

I asked my Father for direction, insight, contacts, sources, and true to form He came through.

There is a way God is that makes Matt 6:33 true, ‘…Ask and you will receive, seek and you will find, knock and the door will be opened.’ It also brought James 4:2b-3 to mind; ‘…Yet you do not have because you do not ask. 3 You ask and do not receive, because you ask amiss, that you may spend it on your pleasures.

I hadn’t been asking let alone asking amiss. I just sat in my corner absorbing information that caused terror in my heart. So I recalibrated and focused on asking my Father the questions in my heart. I needed peace and calm and He gave it. I needed insight, He provided it. I needed perspective and He gave it.

There is a peace that we must all come to because God is sovereign and he will always provide a way out. He will direct when to shop, how much, who to shop for, how to help the community. We can no longer live with the degree of selfishness and greed that has driven the world because it has and will continue to separate us and dictate how we treat people.

We can only stand out and be confident in our Father if we truly believe that He is more than able to do everything He says he will do and make good on His promise to care for us. The anchor has to be God because He is the only one who is steadfast through any storm in life. He is a sure support no matter what.

What do you need to ask Him that you will find your peace and anchor afresh?

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The anchor holds
Though the ship is battered
The anchor holds
Though the sails are torn
I have fallen on my knees as I face the raging seas
The anchor holds in spite of the storm

Ray Boltz

The Simple Life

Do What I Can With What I Have…


My heart is always wondering about how to reach the 30M young people who live on or below the poverty line. We have many programs for the middle and upper class that are charged to meet their costs yet most of the mind shifting work is needed in the lower income areas.

These areas have larger numbers of people and deeper levels of social frustration and economic challenges. They also need more examples of people full of inspiration and strength just like anyone in the world. Life is harder for them because it is rougher. They are oriented to see that others should have mercy on them because they are from the informal sector yet no one really cares.

Over the years and especially in the last six months, I have had conversations with a variety of people including my former nannies, housekeepers, associates, boda riders, security guards among others that fascinated me. They tell stories of lack of access and reveal very limited thought patterns born of their environments. When I listen to political debates and remember my days on the campaign trail in 2017, it is evident that marginalised groups of people are more easily duped when people come and offer monetary help. The women we spoke to in the informal settlements just wanted education and job opportunities, their children wanted the same as a way out of their situations but very few people actually offered these solutions.

As I think about it, I realise that real and lasting change came to my life when my mindset changed yet I have always had a very open mind. If that is my reality, how much more mind opening do we need to do? I remember the young men on the campaign trail making sure they got money from every candidate possible because that would be food for their people. Conversations about work always ended up around lack of skills and opportunities because they had no experience. These conversations keep coming back and I have to ask myself am I ready to take my place and change my corner of the world?

Over the years I have wondered what I have to give the world and what value do I have to share.

It has always been around my skill but that isn’t enough anymore. I want to share the knowledge I have gleaned but at times I don’t even know what I have. I have planning gifts, I have words, I have a creative mind, I have mischief, I know how to live and shop on a budget, I know how to be frugal and low priced, I know how to laugh, to bake, to cook, to meal prep but I didn’t always know how to translate that to real life lessons till recently.

I used to dream and create things in my mind but a few years ago as I was getting my faith sorted out (haha…that sound like a surgical procedure) I began wondering about the ability or permission to have dreams. This was because I realised that until then, my dreams were mine and I had just dressed them in a garment called God but it actually wasn’t His or Him at work in me. I haven’t been able to find comfort to dream again but now I am can’t stop wondering if my fear of past mistakes of leaving God aside is holding me back.

Are the fears holding me back therefore stalling those awaiting my rising?

I am looking back and realising that I have to rise and start with the instructions God has given. Very often we feel that we have to be doing really well to change our world but that isn’t really true. I have spent a few hours every week with a group of ten young men. The idea behind this was to teach them about career choices but it became so much more. We had intense discussions about life mapping, gifts and passions. I watched as the group interrogated different challenges and found answers among themselves followed by smiles and light bulb moments.

I have slowed down movement in my life because I need to be sure that I am not outside God’s will for me or moving ahead of Him. I must admit I have developed a deep fear of going ahead of Him because I know what happens. It is clear that every situation I have been in and every lesson I have learnt is useful to my generations. This couldn’t be any clearer when several of the young men shared how the madness of my life and the experiences shared encouraged them to dream and do more with their lives. The conversations blew their assumptions apart and shock them because it put forward a demand to really do life and desire to change their hood.

We all came face to face with limiting thoughts we had and began the journey to challenging and changing. We faced our fears and voiced our challenges looking for ways out. This class combined with the rest of their course work has given ten young men an important paradigm shift and a way to become stronger, more confident and better people. This is what life has to be about…changing lives.

There is an urgency in my heart so I am off to do what I can with what I have.

Now Peter and John went up together to the temple at the hour of prayer, the ninth hour. And a certain man lame from his mother’s womb was carried, whom they laid daily at the gate of the temple which is called Beautiful, to [a]ask alms from those who entered the temple; who, seeing Peter and John about to go into the temple, asked for alms. And fixing his eyes on him, with John, Peter said, “Look at us.” So he gave them his attention, expecting to receive something from them. Then Peter said, “Silver and gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you: In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, rise up and walk.” And he took him by the right hand and lifted him up, and immediately his feet and ankle bones received strength. So he, leaping up, stood and walked and entered the temple with them—walking, leaping, and praising God. And all the people saw him walking and praising God. 10 Then they knew that it was he who sat begging alms at the Beautiful Gate of the temple; and they were filled with wonder and amazement at what had happened to him. Acts 3:1-9

The Simple Life

Tired


It feels like everything is crashing

It feels like the walls are pressing in

It feels like the doors are closing

I am tired

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I want a break

The walls are closing in

The pressure is mounting

And I am tired

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All around me it is hard

People are struggling and wondering

Others are sad beyond measure

And I’m so, so tired

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My neighbours have struggles too

Some have lost family

Some have lost jobs

It makes me so tired

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In the middle of the challenges

And all the national happenings

It feels like too much to bear

Papa, I am so tired

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I am tired of constant changes

I am tired of uncertainty

I am tired of the lack of clarity

I am tired

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I am tired of fear

I am tired of doubt

I am tired of sadness

I am tired

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I am tired of threats

I am tired of veiled words

I am tired of nuances

I am tired

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I come to my Father

The one who is all knowing

The one who is all loving

I come to my Father

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I know my Father cares

I know my Father is the Creator

I know my Father has a plan

So I come to my Father

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In Him it is all well

I know my path is secure

I know there is hope

I come to my Father

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I know it will all work

I know there is a plan

I know grace abounds

I come to my Father

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So Father help me stand

Help me remain true

Help me honour you

I come to You, my Father

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Move me out of tired

Lead me into trust

Guide me to Your truth

I come to You, my Father

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