Friday, August 31, 2007

Feeling a bit off-ish

(By the way, the caption reads "Tastes funny")

As a minister, I regularly visit people who are ill. They may be in hospital or at home. If I don't visit, I feel that I haven't done my job. I quite enjoy walking down hospital corridors, and I have once been mistaken for a real doctor. I enjoyed the moment, and had a laugh.

This week was my turn to be upside-down. After a hectic week at work, confronted by the emotional turmoil created by the movie "As it is in Heaven", and struggling with my sense of being called, my body decided to take some time out. And it did it properly. It would have been considerate to at least ask my permission, but I think it takes after my wife. It just does things anyway, because it knows that if it were up to me it wouldn't get done.

For the first time in about ten years I spent a full day in bed. Not being lazy, but continuously making peace with Mr Jesus, just to be on the safe side. And then it struck me. I seriously need to think about how I visit people in hospital. Some may not even want me there. I certainly didn't want to be disturbed. I was quite enjoying Bugs Bunny's company (thanks to Benylin 4 Flu).

Being ill is not for the fainthearted (excuse the pun), so I found a new respect for people who try to make life worth living even when their bodies say "No". Blessings to all real doctors out there who try to make people feel better.

Just some thoughts.

Thursday, August 23, 2007

OK Pete, I give in.

Pete asked for a photo of me in my Speedo, so here it is...

Monday, August 20, 2007


Soooooo. I decided to come to gym today. I haven't been for a couple of months, and seeing that summer is on its way, I better start shaping up. Not only do I have to shape up for summer, but Midmar is drawing close quite fast.

Getting up was easy this morning, because I have been planning this session for a while. The smell of chlorine in the air, pumping music in the background only when I come up to breathe, hell I'm pumped. My car drove itself here, adrenaline flowing through my veins. As I stepped into the gym, I noticed that something is different... not only different, but utterly wrong. The pool is full of people... all the equipment is occupied...all the seats at Kauai are taken. NOOOOO!!!!

So, now I am surfing the net while watching other people exercise. This is not too unpleasant an experience though. Wait, a lane just opened. Let me slip into my Speedo. I might just scare the rest out of the water as well.

Thursday, August 16, 2007


What does the word "service" mean to you? The word "service" is a wonderful idea, but somehow knots your stomach like a kindergarten shoelace. My car needs to go for a service - wait for it comes...a double fisherman's knot. Sitting at a coffeeshop, I try to get the waitron's attention "Can I have some service please?" - here it comes...hangman''s noose. And then they look at me as if I insulted their mothers! Service - you say one thing, but it means something else altogether.

Here are some interesting words about service from uncle Karl (I know I've posted it before, but I need some reminding):

"In general terms, service is willing, working and doing in which a person acts not according to his own purposes and plans but with a view to the purpose of another person and according to the need, disposition, and direction of others. It is an act whose freedom is limited and determined by the other’s freedom, an act whose glory becomes increasingly greater to the extent that the doer is not concerned about his own glory but about the glory of the other."

p.s. Sorry about the crude picture, but I thought it was very funny.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Same-sex relationships and getting lost.

Yesterday I led a workshop on Christians and same-sex relationships at Coronationville Methodist Church and received mixed reports. "Mixed reports" means it went well, because I refuse to tell people what to believe and understand the frustration of those who expect to be told what to believe.

But what a trip to get there, more so coming back. I borrowed my in-laws' GPS a toy which I have been eyeing for quite some time. It didn't quite work as I expected it to. The instructions told me that a voice would prompt me and all I needed to do was follow instructions. Simple enough, but life is never as simple as that. Getting to Jo'burg was fine, but then I had to snake my way through some suburbs. All of a sudden a voice spoke, saying "turn left", which I immediately did. The the voice spoke again, saying "recalculating". "Turn left" it said again, which I promptly did, only to hear again "recalculating". Something was not right, which means that something was going wrong, terribly wrong. Each time I turned, it would re-calculate. It must have been my fault, so I stopped, removed all excess wax from my ears, tied a ribbon to my left wrist and tried again. To no avail.

So I tried something more complex, I psychoanalyzed the voice. Thank heavens I am studying psychology, and thank heavens even more that I am doing Abnormal psychology this year. Step 1 in psychoanalysis: You cannot psychoanalyze an object, only a human being, and so I proceeded to give the voice a name: Suzie. Don't ask me why, but that was the first name that jumped to mind. And then it all dawned on me... I was listening to a lady giving directions. Directiongiving 101 explicitly states that... ok, let's not go down this road. Directiongiving 101.2 states that when a lady says "turn left", it never means "turn left", but means "turn left just now, once you are over that hill......there...far away, crossed two streams, swerved out 6 times to miss potholes, pedestrians and dead cows". It all made sense. I then proceeded to translate all of Suzie's instructions and got to Coronationville in no time and returned home in even less.

Thank you Suzie.

Tuesday, August 07, 2007


During the past few days, we have experienced a shortage of fuel due to a petro-chemical workers' strike. Petrol pumps ran dry over the weekend and everybody talked about the inconvenience of it all.

On Saturday I had to make my way to Eersterus for a meeting and had to find some petrol in order to get there (and back). Eventually I found a petrol station that had unleaded. I waited patiently in line, and getting to the front asked the attendant how much fuel we were allowed. He indicated that they still had enough to fill my 35l tank, which I did. But then I witnessed something that was as painful as chewing on polystyrene.

A man drove up to the pump next to the one where I was filling up. Hitched to the car was a 300l tank which he filled subsequent to filling his car and then opened the boot in order to fill four 5l cans! Can you believe it!!!??? He drove away with at least 6 people's share of fuel and he didn't blush once!

And so I preached on sharing this past Sunday. Sharing enables the strengthening of community. Without sharing, without being considerate towards others, without willfully sacrificing a bit so that there can be enough for all, we will never know the meaning of community.