Monday, September 17, 2012


The first of some very belated posts which I wrote while I was in Sri Lanka with the intention of posting as soon as I came back (we got back over 2 months ago!)

"I hadn't realised how much I love this city! For a start, this place is literally 
brimming with childhood memories for me. Worked out that over a total of 5 trips in my life-time (not including this one), I had spent almost as many months in Sri Lanka (most of which in Colombo) as in Grenoble when I lived there. It's not everyone's cup of tea methinks, but there's something about the chaos and the grime and the life in this city that I like.  I'm loving experiencing it again through adult eyes and my first-timer white husband's reactions to everything. Trishaws (also known as tuktuks or three-wheelers depending on your preference) are definitely a hot favourite: epitomising everything I love about Colombo; hilarious, lively chaos. Lovely to see various relatives I hadn't seen for a while and whom Mark had never met, though a fairly detailed diagram was required to explain complex (though in my mind not that complex!) family connections to him. And awesome to hang out with my Gran, who is 100% in her element when entertaining us, whether it's providing every possible option of Sri Lankan pudding under the sun in the time when we stayed there i.e. "Would you like a or b or c or d or e or f...?!" or making one of her loyal local trishaw drivers materialise in front of her flat entrance with the clap of a hand! And within a few days and we're already sampling some of my favourite foods/drinks which are near enough impossible to get at home: hoppers, portello, string hoppers, various curries, mangosteen, rambutan, sugartastic iced coffee = sweeeeet!

"Top table"

I was at a wedding at the weekend. When it came to the meal, it took me a while to find the table that I was at, so I ended up walking around all of them and trying to figure out what seemed like a bunch of cryptic names that didn't seem that obviously related to each other. Turns out the tables were all named after elements of the Bride and Groom's lives: a few of the names and words I didn't recognise, although Mark informed me that I should have recognised the name of the table we were sitting on - "F=ma", though in my defence it's been a long time now since standard grade physics! But I certainly instantly recognised the table name of the "top table". The table that the bride, groom and their families were sitting on, slap bang in the middle of the room, had been named after the couple's number 1 "Jesus". I thought that was pretty cool! The whole wedding was awesome and fun and one joyously joyous occasion as 99% of weddings are!
On a related (though not obviously related) note I keep having the privilege of getting to know wonderful people who are going through all manner of horrendous circumstances far beyond their control and yet are more than coping with it. I'm not talking about minor bumps here, I'm talking about the kinds of circumstances that I couldn't even imagine going through let alone coping with. Not even these tallest of tsunami-esque waves are knocking them over. They are of varying personalities, ages, backgrounds, and yet they all have one thing in common. They've all been fixing their eyes on Jesus, and although they don't have a reason for why it's happening, they don't don't need to have a reason. For they are all, in amongst their sadness and difficulty, are continually finding hope and truth and comfort and love and barely being shaken because they know Him, have some idea of the love God has for them and what it is to live a full life in spite of your circumstances. Inspiring!
All these people, in their good times and their bad have discovered this secret. Jesus is their secret. And I see so many people living out this secret day by day. When I look at him, he fills my head with truth, reality, hope and helps me to see the world with clarity. In him I am witness to pure goodness and love and grace in all it's raw burning reality; I know and am completely known and still completely loved ...and that's barely scratching the surface of all the whys and the wonders! Words just don't cut it. I can find more than a strand of sense in this confused and crazy world when I look at Jesus.