Day 9: Healthy

When I was five my parents moved to the UK from Zululand where they had been missionaries for 16 years. I’m embarking on a kind of pilgrimage to visit for the first time the place I was born and the places my mum and dad ministered. 

This trip feels like the opposite of a mid-life crisis. 

I’ve traveled alone and spent much of my time in solitude and prayer as well as enjoying some adventure and seeing the Devine hand of Father God guide me in the most powerful ways! Some of of the encounters I’ve had with people and nature have really blown me away! 

Ruth and our children have been so kind and loving to me, not only to let me go on this adventure but also (alongside others) pay for the trip through birthday and Christmas gifts. Thank you so much for making this happen! 

This trip has felt like a mid life health check- it’s been full of good reflection on my heritage and why I am the way I am, and wow, I feel envisioned for what lies ahead for the Light Project and also so importantly a renewed desire to stay close to Jesus too.

Each one of us, I believe, longs to know who we are and what purpose we have in life. As a follower of Jesus I still very much need that question answered day by day and to reaffirm who I am and why am I here. This week those big-life questions have been renewed and made stronger within me. 

This trip has felt like a building of my identity and creating time enjoying who God has made me and for what purpose he has made me for too. 

Visiting where I was born brought back a flood of memories that had laid dormant. My home town reminded me why I do what I do and has reaffirmed my heart and love for all people but also reminded me of how I learn from the ‘not so good’ parts of my heritage. 

Today’s morning service in the place I was Christened was a prime example of that. It was a Zulu Anglican service that was a stark contrast to the praxis of my faith which rates relationships and community and the priesthood of all believers when we worship, above formality and hierarchy. 

 

 Don’t get me wrong, it was a beautiful service and the singing was especially very moving. It was the little bits around the formality of the liturgy and hymns that really brought life! 

The experience really served as a simple reminder that I learn from my past and either emulate what I learn or do the opposite of what I learn.   

The distinct white service followed by the all black one (apart from the priest and me and my lovely host) just didn’t sit right with me. I understand why it takes place but to me it didn’t feel like church, the body of Christ together as one. Yes, the language is very different but it made me think how important it is to be one.

I can’t recommend enough to you the process that I have gone through if you haven’t yet done it. Yes, I would be the first to admit it has been a somewhat opulent one, reflecting on my birth place and taking time to sit where I was born and listen to God. 

Non the less it’s one that, I believe is important to my health spiritually and emotionally and I will reap what I have sown in this time. 

Thank you for journeying with me. I will write one last concluding reflection on the plane tomorrow and that will be that… Phew! 

…now, I’ve got a book to finish writing!  

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