Tuesday, 31 July 2012

Daydreamer

Daisy made this video recently - it's really inspiring! :) You are amazing Daisy and I really hope this video you have made inspires others to fulfill their dreams!

Women of God


Monday, 30 July 2012

Rainy Day Thoughts …

I can’t remember where I first saw this, but I thought the analogy was so true. And as it was raining as I sat down to type this, it just seemed to fit that I should post it.

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It’s what I am gradually learning: that God always is there for us even if we feel alone or abandoned. He is so faithful! Often though, we are reluctant to trust in the “umbrella” of faith He gives us – something I am also learning!

This is why I love Charles Dickens’ writing! :)

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I know we can never be perfect, but I love how in his books he often encourages values like this that inspires me to walk more closely with God. If you have never read one of his books, I suggest you begin now! (A good one to start with is The Old Curiosity Shop).

Doesn’t this remind you of Psalm 23?

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I experienced this myself today, where I was not paying proper attention and as a result was nearly run over by a car backing out of a driveway. It really made me realise that had I not noticed in time or the driver not slowed to a halt, I may have met my maker a lot sooner than I would have otherwise anticipated! When one considers that the only reason we are able to breathe is because He is sustaining the universe, one can only begin to contemplate how “He shields [us], though [we] may not always see.” How amazing is that?

Just to finish off, I thought I should post another John Rutter song. Sorry that this has been such a random post (undoubtedly with bad grammar too); sometimes it’s nice to not have anything too specific to say and just to a contemplate a little on God and what He has done. :) And a warning in advance: you may not hear so much from me over the next few weeks, as I am expecting to find myself quite busy! 

Anyway, here is the promised John Rutter song (or rather, hymn)! It’s called The Lord Bless You and Keep You, and is a benediction. 


As an aside, what do you, our readers, think? Should this blog have a change of background? Feel free to leave a comment with any suggestions below!

Friday, 27 July 2012

The Olympics!!

Tomorrow, the London 2012 Olympics open. I'm so excited!!! For as far back as I can remember, I have fond memories of sitting, watching the Olympic Games with my family. I've always loved watching the track events and the gymnastics best. When I was really, really little, I used to dream of going to the Olympics as a gymnast (haha, yeah right!). 

 But I also really love watching the opening ceremonies. The Beijing Olympic opening ceremony was amazing!! Even if they did kinda cheat on a few things ;P. I am really looking forward to seeing what kind of spectacular London has in store for us!! 


It is really cool to be able to watch all of the world's best sports people perform all in one competition!! I love watching them all representing their countries, and doing their very best, giving it their all. 
There have been so many stories about the Olympic athletes in the news recently. Yesterday, I heard one that made me really sad. It is the one about the girl who was cut from the Greek Olympic team, after making a racist remark on Twitter. (You can read the full story  here:)                 

It just made me really sad to hear that. All that work, all the time and energy she put into perfecting her skill, all wasted, because of one thoughtless remark. But, as my mum said to me, when you are in the public eye, you have to be so, so careful what you say and do. 

And that got me thinking. You know, we too are running our own Olympic race, in a way. As Christians, we are running the race of life, for God, and we should be striving to do our very best for Him.  

And as Christians, we are always in the eye of unbelievers, who know what we believe, and are constantly watching to make sure we are living as we say we must. We need to be really careful to act in a way fitting of a runner from the Lord's household. We are to be mirrors which brightly reflect the glory of God!! :) 

"We can be mirrors that brightly reflect the glory of the Lord. And as the Spirit of the Lord works within us, we become more like Him." ~2 Corinthians 3:18~

"Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us also lay aside every weight and sin which clings so closely, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking to Jesus, the founder and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy that set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is seated at the right hand of the throne of God." ~Hebrews 12:1-2~

Anyway, I'm sure that's more than enough from me, and anyway, I'm off to try and get a good night's sleep now - tomorrow morning is the opening ceremony of the London 2012 Olympics!! :D 

Wednesday, 25 July 2012

It's Amazing What the Lord Can Do! :)

It's amazing what the Lord can do! :)

Today, I attended a prayer meeting which the Lord used in wonderful ways to work on my heart, which I felt I must share! It's so funny how He uses a series of little seeming "incidences" to teach us valuable lessons: it is surely no "coincidence" as some might claim! I felt that very much today, where I was learning about various financial matters that are relevant for future plans I am thinking about. I was getting quite anxious about it all, quickly forgetting the verse I find myself returning to frequently: 

"...do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving, let you requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus." (Philippians 4:6,7) 

Honestly, I am very quick to forget this! But the Lord turned my anxiety compeletely around when tonight, at prayer meting, we were talking about monetary matters and how it is better to focus on the riches of eternal life God has given us in Christ than earthly riches. So often I get caught up in the riches this earth has to offer - whether it be a successful career, a lifestyle of luxary or even just a trial free life. 

Help me, oh Lord, to treasure you above everything and everyone else, and to desire to follow you even if it means being poor by this world's standards. Let my life be centred around you and what you would wish, and not purely my own self-centredness. In your name, amen.

 Also, here is a little cartoon I saw that I think is very true! 


I can't remember it's original source, but every time I look at it, it reminds me once again that truly, God holds us in the palm of his hand, even when we think He's not there! Please pray for me, that I would keep trusting in His provision and I pray that you, the reader of this blog, may also see His hand working in your life.

Your sister in Christ,
Violet

Tuesday, 24 July 2012

It Is For Freedom That Christ Has Set Us Free

I LOVE this!! ♥

"When Jesus died on the cross, He broke our chains, He broke our bondage to sin.
Some Christians say they are shackled to sin.
And the reality is, yes, they have handcuffs on, but they are the little toy handcuffs you used to play with when you were a kid. And on the back, there is just a little switch, a little leaver, and the handcuffs will come right off.
And yeah, sure, they just slap these manacles, these handcuffs, back onto themselves time and time and time again, but because of Jesus, because of what He did on the cross, because of His blood, we have a little safety release button, and those handcuffs can come right off at any time.

Because of Jesus, you can take those shackles off at any time.
You are not enslaved to sin anymore.
It is for freedom that Christ has set us free!"


This is an exert from an RnR Productions series, in case anyone wondered! :)

The Plane Trip Home from Auckland

Here are some pictures I just had to share of our trip back from Auckland! And I promise that this selection will not have as many photos as some of my previous posts! Enjoy! :)

Gateway to home: can you spot the little rainbow? Isn't God an amazing creator!
Mt. Ruapehu in all her splendour - it was a lovely clear day when I took this!

And Hyacinth, I took these just for you!!! :)



Aren't Hyacinth flowers just gorgeous! Just like Hyacinth herself! :)

That's all the time I have for now, but there will be an upcoming post soon on some of the historical places I visited while in Auckland!

Monday, 23 July 2012

The Small Things of Beauty...

This morning I woke up feeling grumpy. And even though I didn't want to feel grumpy, I did. And try as I might, I just couldn't seem to make that grumpy feeling go away. I mean, there was absolutely nothing wrong, I was just plain grumpy.

But my mum, as always, knew the cure. She told me to get my coat and shoes on, and to come with her. A moment later, we were down the road at a park, and mum was telling me to keep quiet and listen.
So I did. And as I did, I heard the most beautiful sound. The dawn chorus. It has been icy cold and rainy here in my hometown for the last couple of weeks, and this morning, although it was still icy, it was beautifully sunny, and the birds seemed thrilled to have a few sunlight hours, for they were all singing, at the tops of their tiny little voices.

It is funny how something as little as that can change your mood, but it certainly changed mine. It really reminded me to appreciate the little things in life, the small things which make the world a beautiful place, if you just take the time to stop and notice them. God's creation is truly amazing!! Even the tiniest little things. I know it can feel like a waste of time to just sit still and appreciate, but I highly recommend it - it just makes you feel so good. I myself will definitely be taking more time to stop and notice the little things now!!

Sunday, 22 July 2012

Sunday thought . . .

There are times in our lives when we can be reading God’s word, the Bible, and appear to be doing the “right” thing, when in reality we take none of it in and refuse to listen to what He would have to tell us. That has been me recently, I confess. In a sense, a refusal to pay heed to God’s word is in fact a form of rebellion against Him, and that was certainly the attitude of my heart recently. Basically, I was saying to Him, “Lord, I’ll read your word, I’ll give an outward appearance of following your word, but actually I’m angry at you for the way my life is at the moment, and so I’ll live my own way still thank you very much!” But last night, the Lord struck my heart and convicted me of my sin in this area, through a passage in Job:

“Behold, blessed is the one whom God reproves; therefore despise not the discipline of the Almighty. For He wounds, but He binds up; he shatters, but his hands heal.” – Job 5:17,18

In every circumstance, every trial, GOD IS IN CONTROL. This is what I was refusing to remember. God may be disciplining me or He may be shaping me and drawing me closer to Him through my trials. Whatever the case, I had been “despising His discipline”. So if you read this at a time when you, like me, are going through a difficult time, I urge you to remember this! And to top it all, in my email inbox this morning was this post from  My Morning Ti which I highly recommend you read!

God bless you as you serve Him!

Your sister in Christ,
Violet

Wednesday, 18 July 2012

Daisy's Collection of Pinterest Quotes

Well, school term has resumed once again here in New Zealand, and life continues on its busy path for me... But, I promise I will post some things soon - I have been missing blogging a lot!! As you can imagine, I have been really busy with our upcoming play, and also with singing things, and editing a movie Violet, Hyacinth, Lily and I have been making for years. But I will make sure I get around to my blogging soon!! In the meantime, here is a collection of beautiful quotes I found on Pinterest! ♥ Hope you like them!! :)
Love, Daisy                                                                           

I love these two songs of praise! :)

I’m going through another phase! This time it’s John Rutter’s music. I love how he incorporates worship and praise to God seamlessly into his music. Just listen to the lyrics if the tunes themselves aren’t enough to make you praise God. Here are two of my favourites:

For the Beauty of the Earth

Look at the World

And yes, I will update you on the rest of my Auckland Adventures soon! And remember to tell us if you’re interested in being involved in the musical, which I’m glad to say does include some of John Rutter’s fabulous music! :)

God bless!
Violet

Friday, 13 July 2012

The Secret is Revealed at Last!!!!!!!!!!!! (You must read this post)!

Hello all our avid readers!!!

We have a very exciting announcement (and it is partly the reason why Daisy has been so busy recently!): Daisy and Violet are involved in bringing about a Family Friendly Production to be performed this year at Christmas (Lord willing)! Read the information below, and if you are in the Manawatu/Wanganui region of New Zealand, we would love to have you attend the auditions! 


Wanted!
Actors, dancers, musicians and singers:
We need your help in bringing a Family Friendly Production The Boar's Head Madrigal Dinner to Palmerston North this Christmas!


The Boar's Head Madrigal Dinner is a dinner show set in the Middle Ages and is paired with John Rutter's fabulous musical The Reluctant Dragon accompanied by traditional Christmas carols.

Auditions to be held on Saturday, 4th of August at All Saints Church Hall.
Dancers will be required to come with a 1 minute long prepared dance to show us (music would need to be on a CD: no other format, thank you!), singers would need to be able to sing one verse of Silent Night from memory and actors will need to come prepared to read aloud a portion of the script.

You MUST RSVP to to get an audition time:
Nina Donkin (Production Secretary/Director) and Dr Debbie Donkin (Musical Director)
Email: familyfriendly.productions@gmail.com
Phone: (06) 353 6625
The Boar's Head Madrigal Dinner


familyfriendly.productions@gmail.com

http://familyfriendlyproductions.weebly.com/

  
For more information about the play, feel free to visit our website - http://familyfriendlyproductions.weebly.com/auditions.html 
Family Friendly Productions is a Christian production company, created last year by Daisy and her family, and is dedicated to providing top-quality, family friendly productions to the community - the type of productions anyone can go and see, without having to fear offensive content.

God  bless you all and we'd love to see you get involved in this amazing production! 
Violet and Daisy 

Monday, 9 July 2012

An African take on Coldplay's "Paradise"

   
I have to say, I absolutely LOVE this cover of Coldplay's "Paradise", which is one of my favourite songs!! :D I love almost all of The Piano Guys covers, and this one is probably my favourite on two counts. One, I love the original song (you can see it here on A Christian's Guide To Pop Music), and two, my family are from Africa, so I have grown up around African music, which makes this cover even more appealing to me! xD
I hope you all like it too!!
Love,
Daisy ♥

Friday, 6 July 2012

Auckland Beach photo shoot!!!

Hi All!

Yay, Jessica and I (Violet) finally managed to go out and have a fun photo shoot!!! Neither of us are very good photographers and our family camera is fairly basic, so the quality of these photos will be nowhere near as good as on other blogs, but we still had lots of fun taking them and that is the main thing!

I want to start with my absolute favourites, which are . . . .

Messages in Sand! (the words speak for themselves really!)

I love you Jessica!!! :)
Jessica says "hello" to you from Auckland, Daisy!
We thought we'd add the daisy, for greater effect! I miss you Daisy!
I'm missing my holiday catch-up with you both! :(
 We're missing you HEAPS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


I hope you guys (or girls, rather!) liked them! We miss you all!!!

Now for what we did on our photo shoot . . .

We walked along a marina, and looked at the boats!
Our shoes! (Yes, we did get bored of looking at boats!)
This sign was quite intimidating - particularly as it was near the walkway we were going on!
Boat painting/mending!
Jessica posing for the camera!
Looking out to sea - the tide is WAY out!
"Ooh, look!"
Underneath the boardwalk
The boardwalk!
Footprint (I can't remember if it's mine or Jessica's)!
Yes, our shoes did get rather muddy in our efforts to get photos! :( We spent ages cleaning them up afterwards!
We found this little pathway which led to some rocks where some men were fishing.
Lovely little view. :)
Joyful Jessica jumping on the boardwalk!
Me looking out to sea . . . missing home! :(
Birds on the hill/cliff above.
A BIG tree - my mum used to play around it when she was a girl!



When I was little, I used to be scared stiff of this drain pipe!

Yay - we got to the beach at last! :p
A rose - I LOVE this photo that Jessica took while we were on our walk!
What are you up to, Jessica? I confess - we loved this little door and so pretended to be opening it!
It looks like it is night in this photo, but it was actually broad daylight! We had issues with the camera and lighting! :(

Me sniffing a flower . . .
. . . and no, for the record I do not normally do this, only I have in all our photo shoots!!!
I love this photot of Jessica (despite the bad lighting)! Isn't she pretty?
We thought this plant looked interesting and very funny!!!
Me on the hill - for some reason it looks like I'm standing on my tip-toes (I am not)!
Jessica sniffing the rose - this photo didn't end up quite right!
I know that it's a rubbish bin - but I did love the decorations on it!
Isn't it lovely? Seagull prints set in concrete for decoration next to a beach seat.
Of course, we had to add OUR feet to the picture!!!
Jessica relaxing on the beach seat!
Jessica *pretending* to have fallen asleep on the beach seat!
I love this photo of Jessica!!! It is so like her - a typical pose!
Looking back at the boardwalk - the tide had come in a bit by this stage!
Writing in sand - a work in progress! :)
No - we didn't make these sandcastles: we found them on the beach!
Last view of the beach! :(
Near the end of our trip - me (Violet) posing on a lovely wall they had along the end of the beach.
Going home - the end of our adventures! :(
I hope you enjoyed our really long photo shoot (apologies for that: it was so hard to narrow down the photos)! It did feel a bit bizarre to be doing a beach photo shoot, I must say, as here in New Zealand it is winter!!! 

Again, for all those I know who see this or who I have mentioned (see the messages in the sand!) :) I miss you all so much, and my dear home! :( As you can tell, our holidays are really enjoyable so far and we hope yours are too!

Violet