Week 1 – Sitting, Day 1 – Come Away

Come with me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest” 

Mark 6:31

So the first thing which happened to Matilda was that she was separated out from the other hens.  She needed that space to have her own brooding box, she needed that peace and quiet away from the clucking and disturbance of the other hens.  She needed to come away by herself to a quiet, safe place.

So what about us?  Do we need to step aside from distractions for a while?  Do we need to create a quiet, safe place where we can have some head room to hear the voice of God as to next steps?

Do we need to take a step back from all the usual distractions of the daily?  Do we need to come away for a while by ourselves in order to hear the Master’s voice?

Lord, help me to put aside the distractions of the day, to come, to rest in You and to hear Your voice. Amen.

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A Month with Mother Hen

This October I am taking up the challenge to write everyday with others from the Five Minute Friday writing community on the 31 Days of Free Writes 2019 Challenge.  I am going to be sharing  life lessons learnt from my mother hen!

The way of a Mother Hen with her chicks is truly one of the wonders of the animal world.  There are many life and spiritual lessons we can learn from her.  These particular lessons have been drawn from watching my own ‘Broody Hen’ this summer when she successfully hatched and reared 7 chicks.

A Month with Mother Hen

So meet Matilda, she is a grey speckled hen with a pom pom on her head, so quite regal looking!  She actually is a neighbour’s hen who went “broody”, that is the natural instinct to sit and hatch eggs took over her, so we took her to ours, gave her a safe place and put 10 of our own eggs under her to sit on.  

So starting from tomorrow (Monday), I will be posting a very short daily devotional for 4 weeks, – Monday through to Friday with a time to pause and reflect at the weekend.  The devotionals will be short and  will include a scripture reading, a little story about Matilda & her chicks and the lessons we can learn from her, followed by a short prayer.

See table of contents below and click on the day’s reading to take you directly to that devotional day’s devotional.

Table of Contents

Week 1 – Sitting

Day One – Come Away

Day Two – Focus

Day Three – Self-Sacrifice

Day Four – Patience

Day Five – Waiting

Weekend – Pause & Reflect

Week 2 – Hatching & Protecting

Day One – Fruition

Day Two – Refuge

Day Three – Manna

Day Four – Calls

Day Five – Protection

Weekend – Pause & Reflect

Week 3 – Learning & Growing

Day One – Recognising

Day Two – Learn form Example

Day Three – Searching

Day Four – Drinking

Day Five – Transforming

Weekend – Pause & Reflect

Week 4 – Community

Day One – Boundaries

Day Two – Community

Day Three – Relationships

Day Four – No Idols

Day Five – Finish Well

Weekend – Pause & Reflect

“I’m participating in 31 Days of Five Minute Free Writes in October!   www.fiveminutefriday.com/31days2019

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Success

Joining up today again with the Five Minute Friday Group of writers who write for 5 minutes on a one word prompt.  Today’s prompt is Success.

Mmmh, success can be hard to measure sometimes can’t it?  But it definitely speaks of achievement of some sort.

For me it also ties in with last week’s prompt of challenge.  Success is completing the challenge.  So the challenge I have been struggling with, but which I have now signed up for is the October 31 days Writing Challenge!  Free writing for 31days!  A big commitment, a lot of concerns, but the measure of success will be the completion of the challenge.

The challenge always for me is putting my writing out there, but here I am with the opportunity for 31 days, the month of October, to write and put it out, even if it is just to an audience of One.  It will be an achievement, it will be success, but really it is just obedience and as such I should just humbly submit and ask that through it all He will be glorified.

So watch out this weekend for the launch of my #31days2019 write.  I have a series, a theme in mind.  More to follow …

Perhaps the graphic will give you an idea of what it is:

“I’m participating in 31 Days of Five Minute Free Writes in October! Registration closes September 30th. Join here: www.fiveminutefriday.com/31days2019

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Challenge

Joining again with the #fmf group to write for 5 minutes on a one word prompt.  This week’s prompt is: Challenge.

But the problem with a challenge you see is that it is very personal isn’t it?  What is a challenge to you may not be for me, and you may wonder at my fears and halting over what you consider trivial, but which for me stretches me, challenges me, takes me out of my comfort zone.

For some a challenge may just be getting out of bed in the morning and facing a new day, for others it may be facing an illness with bravery and composure, for many it is putting a brave face on and facing the challenges of the day.  It need not be that huge challenge of doing some phenomenal sport/activity challenge which attracts a lot of attention.  But rather it is a quiet meeting of the challenge of the everyday with grace.

So what challenge am I facing at the moment?  Well to be honest, I am afraid to tell you, I don’t want to share it, you may not understand where I am coming from, you may not appreciate the fears and insecurities which make this a challenge for me.  And that is the whole thing isn’t it, we don’t know what challenges people face, so we really shouldn’t judge, we don’t know what hurdles they are facing.  So we should cut ‘some slack’ and treat people with kindness, cheering each other on, encouraging, and stretching each other and be a safe, empathetic, understanding place where people can share their struggles and challenges.

When we face challenges, which seem like mountains, when the storms and sea billows blow new challenges our way, we fix our eyes on Jesus, we keep Him before us and we remind ourselves:
Because He lives, I can face tomorrow
Because He lives, all fear is gone
Because I know He holds the future
And life is worth the living, just because He lives
And life is worth the living, just because He lives
And then one day, I’ll cross the river
I’ll fight life’s final war with pain
And then, as death gives way to victory
I’ll see
Because He Lives
Kristin Chenoweth
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Start

Joining up with the #FiveMinuteFriday team to write for 5 minutes on a one word prompt.  This week’s word is: Start

“Start as you mean to go on” is a saying I hear in my mother’s voice in my head.

But that is all very well isn’t it?  You start well, you are full of enthusiasm, you think you can do it, you may even have a plan of how to get it done, in the best way, in least amount of time, your goal is in sight.

But alas!  Trials come, unexpected obstacles which you hadn’t foreseen suddenly appear in your path.  It can be dark and danger seems to lurk round certain corners.  The air once so clear and bright now seems heavy and oppressive, it is any wonder your energy levels drop, your enthusiasm wains?

My bible focus verse for this week has this covered:

Philippians 3:12-14

Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me…  But one thing I do: forgetting what is behind and straining towards what is ahead.  I press on towards the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenwards in Christ Jesus.

So I press on.  I don’t know what lies round the corner, I  may loose the path a bit, I may get a bit distracted, but I press on.  I don’t look behind at what I once was, but I fix my eyes, I strain forward to catch a glimpse of that goal.

Onwards and upwards I strain forward to persevere and continue on what I have started, getting to know my Saviour, getting closer to heaven, and when energy and enthusiasm wains I fix my eyes on Jesus because He is the goal, He is the prize and He is worth it every time!