John Lennon, Service and all that

Tress remarked to someone on Saturday night that I craved catching up with people, having been starved of company all those months in Canberra.

She was right of course.

We were with the Hipos and Jason and Mel again on Friday night. Gerry wanted us to go to this new ramen and dumpling place in Vermont South and after that we went to the Hipos’ home for drinks. When we left around 9.30pm, we were both so tired – it had been another long week at work for the both of us and for me, it was great just catching up with old friends again and we were going to also meet up with Alex and his family the following night.

On Sat morning after sleeping in and breakfast at home, we went shopping. We got some pork ribs which we marinated with lots of garlic, the rub mix Mic and ET had got from the Yarra Valley, Chinese wine and sugar. I then went to my back neighbour’s backyard to trim the pittosporum which had grown on that side to a size that was going to play havoc with the fence. It was a messy backyard, with loads of uncontrolled growth so all I could do was get rid of the large bunches so that no chunky bits was compromising the fence. After over an hour I went and worked on our own lawns and backyard and kept at it till just on 4pm. Tress had done the laundry and ironing and earlier, had also gone to Madam K’s to pick up lunch – we had on the deck – it was a very good break for me.

Garden done I started to roast the ribs. The gas ran out and thankfully the spare bottle I had in the shed was full and the cooking finally got done just after 6.30 and we went to Alex and Li Har’s home a bit after 7. Tress particularly enjoyed the evening – probably because the drinking was more controlled and the group was smaller.

Alex had confided with me that night. It had been a tough 2015 for him too. It was mainly financial concerns and he and Li Har had also contemplated the option of returning to Malaysia. He’s found work with a Malaysian developer however and so that’s tiding things over for him.

I guess we all have our struggles. I thought 2015 had been such a strange and challenging year for me but spending time with different people often produce that sort of outcome – where you find your struggles are not isolated and while unique, is not an uncommon experience. I guess that is just another way to say and experience how fallen man strives to right wrongs.

Sunday at church Peter taught well (as he often does) on Romans 3. Bad news in Romans 1:18-3:20 bookended by the Good News of Romans 1:1-17 and 3:21-31. We’re all no where near good enough but we’re all saved in Christ.

Late yesterday arvo as Tress and I walked Little Black Jedi, I said to her I’d really want this to be a preparatory year of sorts. At the end of this year, I hope to be very clear minded about the sort of ministry to serve in. I’m not sure I want to remain a passive member of St Alf’s beyond 2016. I need to serve. It’s waiting again I guess, to see where/how the Lord wants me to serve in St Alf’s. Maybe He wants me to wait, just so the desire to serve goes beyond the selfish (I need to serve) to the selfless (Who needs to be served).

As I was roasting the ribs on Saturday, I caught on TV, Dreyfuss in his role as Glenn Holland in “Mr. Holland’s Opus” was doing a beautiful rendition John Lennon’s “Beautiful Boy.Life is what happens to you when you’re busy making other plans” was a line I remembered well when I first watched that movie – it made me buy the soundtrack. The CD is still sitting in a cupboard here somewhere – I made sure I brought it with us when we left Malaysia.

While I wait on Him – making plans to serve Him – life happens. Offer myself as a living sacrifice, holy and pleasing to God—this is my true and proper worship/service. For now – 2016 – sure, but probably beyond too. Perfection is a series of little things done right… who said that?