Category Archives: Thankfulness

Fear vs Faith

Standard

I was raised to be scared of spiders. In fact, I was raised to be scared of any creepy crawly. In the house where I grew up, there was a can of insecticide in every room, with spare full ones in the kitchen. Whatever moved in that house, got killed. My mother was scared of spiders and she passed that fear on to me. For years, I freaked out at any insect. I couldn’t stand it. As a family, we still laugh at an incident a few years back, when a large black cricket decided to walk up the right leg of my pants. When I felt the movement, I was out of my pants before I could think about it. It just happened. That fear inside of me was far greater than the fear of having people see me standing in my underwear. Imagine that.

My husband however, has no fear. He picks the insects up and relocates then outside. I wanted to be like him. I wanted to overcome my fear of insects and spiders. It took a lot of hard work on my side, and a lot of patience on his side. Today, I can honestly say, my fear is gone. I now have a pet spider. And meal worms that I can pick up with my fingers to feed them to the bearded dragons. I have overcome my fear and I am very proud of it.

Meet Sarah, my pet spider.

sarah

Why am I blogging about this? Fear is debilitating. And I firmly believe that fear, attracts exactly the things we fear, to us. Job said: “what I feared most, has overcome me”.

Fear is the direct opposite to faith, in all dimensions of our lives. I wasn’t only raised to be scared of spiders, I was also raised to be a racist. Racism is nothing but fear. We fear people who look different, dress different, speak different, all of that for no logical reason whatsoever. As a young adult, I started attending an english, charismatic church. And I soon learned that people of other cultures, are not bad just because they have a different skin colour than me. I learned that they too, are real people. People who love. People who laugh. People who cry. There were people in that church, of a different skin colour, who shared my love for music. Soon, they became my friends. Without them even knowing, they helped me to overcome my fear of people from another culture. Without them even knowing, they helped me to overcome racism.

Everything we were taught as kids, are not necessarily correct. Our parents are/were after all just human too. Humans fighting their own fears, and sometimes, not winning. As an adult, you have the responsibility to decide for yourself. You will not be judged one day on what your mother taught you; you will be judged by your own words, your own actions, your own beliefs, and yes, your own fears.

Today I want to bring honour to Babalo and Charmaine. Without them even knowing, they brought healing to my fearful soul. They were part of my journey, to conquer racism, to conquer my fear of anybody different from myself.

babalo

I dare you to start facing your fears, whatever it may be. Living with fear isn’t nice. I can attest to that. Living without fear, is liberating to say the least.

Advertisements

in His footsteps…

Standard

My husband and I took a long walk on the beach a few days ago. At one stage, I was behind him, trying to walk in his footprints. His steps are however so far apart, that I battled to imitate him. My legs are just too short to give such enormous steps!

While I was trying, I suddenly thought of our lifelong attempt to ‘walk in the footsteps’ of Jesus. We want to be like Jesus. We want to live our lives as Jesus lived His. But try as we may, we just cannot live the holy life Jesus lived. We fail daily. Miserably. Daily, we disappoint ourselves.

But hope is found in the Word!

Romans 8:1 Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.

Just keep trying. God sees you as holy through the work that Jesus did on the cross. I read a book once – ‘Failing Forward’. And that is how we are. We keep failing, but through grace, we keep going forward. Get up and try again. There is no condemnation, so don’t let guilt keep you from trying again.

Live your life, failing forward.

#100marymoments no.4 – a passionate smile

Standard

I hate public bathrooms. I have a thing about people who do not wash their hands after using the toilet, and in public bathrooms you see it all the time. I always see a smart lady walk out of the toilet cubicle, pause in front of the mirror just long enough to fix her hair before she walks out of the door with unwashed hands. It always freaks me out. I am at the point where I hate touching anything in there. Picture this: if the door to the ladies automatically closes, I grab some toilet paper on my way out of the toilet cubicle. After I have washed my hands, that extra toilet paper is used to close the tap and open the door. Balancing on one foot while the other holds the door, I aim for the rubbish bin with the used toilet paper. And I usually miss. Which means I have to go pick it up off the dirty floor and wash my hands again. This little ritual could be repeated several times until I hit the target; I am sure you get the picture.

Tonight I am at Lanseria airport waiting for my husband. Luckily here, the door to the bathroom remains open. Much easier. I was vigorously shaking the water from my hands after washing them when I heard her soft voice next to me: “here you are Mam”. In her hands she had two sheets of towel paper. Yes TWO! No person ever gets it right with just one anyway. I was so surprised. She had such a lovely smile! It really touched my heart.

As I sat down for a cup of coffee, she wondered into my mind again.

She is a toilet cleaner. It is a job that I, with all my hangups about hygiene, will never survive. And yet, she is doing her job with a smile. With passion. With kindness. It is mind-blowing to me.

Imagine what life would be like if we all start doing what we are supposed to do, with a passionate smile and an attitude of kindness. Imagine such a world. Just imagine it.

IMG_0034-1.JPG