A Sweet Smelling Season

A Sweet Smelling Season

Today’s feature pic shines the spotlight on a wonderfully sunny Spring flower … Mimosa.

I came home from picking up the kids the other day and there was a huge bouquet of it on our doorstep – a gift from our neighbour. That it was left at the front door is something in and of itself. Unlike in North America, typically, the French wouldn’t come into your yard without you letting them in… it goes to show the level of comfort between us (but… it’s also the first time).

To get a bright yellow bouquet like this, you have to pull all the leaves off (there’s one leaf at the base of each flower branch – so it’s a bit of work) but it’s so worth it… by later that evening, the entire house was bathed in its sweet scent.

Norway & Bordeaux-bound

Last night after school, Timo got on a train to head down to Bordeaux for the weekend, to spend time with the youth group there. He had such a great time at New Year’s that he was anxious for the opportunity to return and since Dominic & Soph were going to be away as well… the choice was clear.

For their part, the older two arrived in Norway yesterday afternoon. They’re attending a conference where Wayne Huntley and Nathan Harrod will be ministering.

Them traveling alone was pure adventure for them and a bit of a stretch for us. But the Lord had things in control: unbeknownst to us, there were a number of other French young people on the same flight so, upon arrival, they weren’t navigating things by themselves. Not only that, but the AirBnB we reserved is only something like 240 meters (800 feet) from the conference venue (we knew it was close… but not THAT close).

We’re anxious to hear about the good things the Lord will do in our kids’ lives this weekend!

Worlds Apart

Spending yesterday and today in the Paris region was another reminder of just how good we have it in our quiet little part of the country.

I daresay that one of the reasons I’m able to have a bit of spare time to fiddle in the garden & plant this year’s flowers & veggies is because I don’t lose hours each week fighting the traffic that is just part of everyday life in greater Paris. I don’t know how many kilometers of backed up traffic like this, that I saw yesterday! Too many for my liking… fortunately, I was on the right side of the road and things were moving more fluidly.

Thrown for a Loop

“And here, the outer ring, is where Trump was elected.”

I’m a bit surprised, actually, at the extent to which world events have affected me the last couple of weeks. There is a palpable uneasiness in my spirit. I’ve stepped away from Twitter for a while as a result.

Never mind the Coronavirus, volcanoes erupting, earthquakes, etc., the continuing social unrest in France is essentially becoming a long-term stressor. Add to that the political tsunami that is US politics… it’s mind-blowing.

America is no longer the city shining on a hill. Not when the president uses the National Prayer Breakfast to spew defiance and bitter nastiness. Agree or disagree on the politics of things… It’s clear that the level of public discourse & civility has tanked.

(Halifax-based political cartoonist Michael deAdder has some brilliant – if biting – Trump-themed cartoons)

Looking Up

That being said… While there’s a nagging unease in my Spirit about a number of things, I’m encouraged by a few things as well, as we close out the week.

  • We’ve had what feels like a major breakthrough in terms of our church building in Châtellerault. It looks like we may soon be able to start publicizing things (events, church location, etc.) That’s been a major hindrance ever since we got here.
  • We had a neighbouring pastor ask us about sending up an evangelism team on a regular basis this year as well as doing several combined youth events for the benefit of our kids and some of their friends.
  • The way the Lord answered specific prayers concerning our kids’ travel plans.

Spiritual Mimosa

The only way to get a great looking mimosa bouquet, it to pull out, little by little (& it’s tedious), the leaves. Once that’s done, there’s nothing to distract from or dull-down the bright yellow colour.

Similarly, if we’ll remove some of the negatives from our daily life – by entrusting them to the Lord’s care (and not taking them back out of his hand through worry), then we’ll be able to be a sweet-smelling bouquet, not rife with distraction, that brings joy to each other and those around us.

God bless you this week & thanks for stopping by!
Let what you read inform your prayer for us & for France.

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