Favourite Scribblings


Tuesday 5 April 2016

Getting married

Today it is exactly 11 days until Edd's and my wedding day. Crazy how time has gone by. A year ago it felt like an eternity but the last couple of months and weeks have flown by so quickly.
Preparations are well under way (I think - I might just be ignorant...) and I am so so excited. Sadly, right now, I am suffering a sinus infection but hoping to be on top form again for the wedding and honeymoon.
I mean if I get over this nastiness now I won't be ill again for the wedding ... I hope!

I probably have missed some prime opportunities in not posting more about our wedding preparations but to tell you the truth - it is not as glamorous as it looks in the magazine and the pretty blogs. It is super fun but also very stressful - especially when you see your budget getting drained so much more quickly than anticipated.

However. Even though business has kept me away from this space a bit, that is not why I haven't told you all about bridesmaids dresses and decorations and menus and flowers and beauty routines. The reason I didn't is that firstly there is about a thousand blogs on your perfect wedding day, planning schedules and ideas. And secondly, it can divert the focus of the main thing.

The main thing is that Edd and I commit to loving each other for the rest of our lives. And we want to make this commitment in front of friends and family. This is a reason to celebrate and hence the decorations and menus and colourful dresses. But those are all secondary.

We strongly believe that marriage is a gift from God and it represents Christ's unconditional love for his church. In a culture where people are less and less inclined to make commitments to each other, to pursue their individual goals and to avoid responsibility, Edd and I have decided to publicly declare our love, our ongoing commitment and our goal to always put each other first.

Last week my mum reminded me of a blog post I wrote in 2009. This was 2 years before I even met Edd but it has been something that I probably discussed with myself until about the end of 2013 when Edd and I started thinking about getting in a relationship (it took another 9 months from then until we actually started going out but hey, why easy if you can have complicated...). Anyway, in this post I talk about the decision between being single and not being single. The choice between independence and the ability to do what you and you alone want to do or choosing dependence on someone else and accepting that they are also dependent on you, that you should not only take them into account when making decisions but to put their needs and desires before your own.

I am not going to lie - I didn't find that an easy decision and actually really struggled in the beginning of Edd's and my relationship to give up my independence and to really share my life with him, to talk about my fears and dreams and what I was struggling with when usually I am quite concerned with giving off the impression that I do not struggle at all (which is rather foolish). I also had to learn that a partner is different to a friend. You can't really go without speaking to them for a couple of days or to only see them every other week. Relationships really take a lot of time. And for an introvert like me, who likes spending time by myself, writing, making music or reading - that wasn't so easy.

However, quite wonderfully, I experienced that giving up part of what I wanted for myself in order to make Edd happy was really deliberating. Sometimes we hold on to things that are not actually good for us. Equally I have gained so so much more than I gave up. I used to think I would be able to do more if I stayed single but Edd gives me so much confidence, inspiration and energy that I would never have without him. He encourages me and enables me to be more and do more and dream bigger than I could have on my own.

(I am not trying to say that being in a relationship is better than being single. I don't think one is better than the other. Both come with sacrifices and both with benefits.)

This is also quite an interesting lesson for our relationship with Jesus. Often we want to hold on to our independence, we don't want to let Jesus help us, we don't want to do what he wants. But if we eventually give up what we are holding unto and start surrendering to him we experience a freedom never thought possible.
And the freedom and peace and love that we can experience when we know Jesus is far greater than what any human relationship or any independence can ever give us.

I feel this is quite a long-winded post, but actually what I wanted to say is:

  1. I am in love and cannot wait to get married. I feel incredibly lucky.
  2. For us, marriage means to be selfless and to put the other one first. This is not easy by any stretch of imagination and I am actually rather rubbish at this. Luckily, I can ask God for his grace, forgiveness and strength.
  3. Knowing Jesus is even better than knowing Edd (and that says a lot).

The End.

Saturday 12 March 2016

Hey there

I feel like these days most of my blogging is apologising for my long time of not blogging. Life is pretty crazy at the moment - but in a good way!

As people might know I started a new job in September which I love, I am still studying for my Masters degree (in Sustainable Development) and Edd and I are about to get married! After the wedding I will move in with Edd. Our house is in Blackpool, where we are part of a new church that has just started. I will be writing more about our church planting adventures later on, but make sure to check out Christ Church Blackpool here.

In fact, today is the day that me and my girlfriends celebrate my last days of "singleness" with a day of fun. (I don't actually know what we're doing, I just have an inkling that some sort of pub will be involved).

Wedding preparations area coming along,  even though there is still a lot more to do - but I reckon that is normal with 4 weeks to go to your wedding?
Also, crazy as Edd and I are, we are not only organising one wedding but two - one in Germany and one in England. I think after that I will be an expert in wedding planning...

Right now, I still feel a bit stressed by it all but most days it is pretty fun to plan those big days where we celebrate our love and the fact that we want to spend the rest of our lives together.

So today it is exactly 35 days until our wedding in Germany (and 49 until our wedding here). In an odd way that both makes me super giddy and a bit concerned at the same time - I can't wait for our wedding day but then I think 'what only 35 days and still so much to do!'
But I reckon that is all part of the experience.

Well but for now I am off to my hen do! (Be sure to come back next week for some fun pictures!)

Friday 1 January 2016

Happy 2016

happy new year everyone! 

i hope you all had a lovely christmas time and a fun new years eve. i spent a lot of time with my family and edd which was really nice.

the first of january is probably my favourite date as it feels like a new beginning, promises new opportunities and smells of new adventures.

i know that many people don't believe in resolutions but i quite like reflecting on what i achieved and what aims i have and what i want to focus my time on. i definitely would like to blog more! let's see how that goes...

a resolution i had last year was to spend more time reading as it is something i really enjoy and that inspires me. and i actually managed to read nearly 30 books (over 10000 pages! - i know this because i created an excel sheet...). one of these books was a biography about dietrich bonhoeffer written by eric metaxas.

i was very impressed by this book and i thought about it a lot after i finished it.
dietrich bonhoeffer was a german pastor and he lived during the third reich. he was part of a resistance movement - it's a long story (you should read it) but he ended up going to prison and was killed by the nazis one month before the war came to an end. he became very famous for his books and he also wrote some beautiful poetry. one of his poems is very fitting for today. it is originally written in german but i found a translation of a some of the verses. i find it extremely powerful especially thinking that bonhoeffer wrote these lines whilst in prison.
i hope it encourages you in these times in which our world seems to be so full of insecurity and threat. how good to know that we have a god who is in control and who is with us.

By gracious powers so wonderfully sheltered, and confidently waiting, come what may, we know that God is with us night and morning, and never fails to greet us each new day.  
Yet is this heart by its old foe tormented, still evil days bring burdens hard to bear; O give our frightened souls the sure salvation for which, O Lord, you taught us to prepare.  
And when this cup you give is filled to brimmingwith bitter sorrow, hard to understand, we take it thankfully and without trembling,out of so good and so beloved a hand.  
Yet when again in this same world you give us the joy we had, the brightness of your sun,we shall remember all the days we lived through, and our whole life shall then be yours alone.

Von guten Mächten treu und still umgeben,
Behütet und getröstet wunderbar,
So will ich diese Tage mit euch leben
Und mit euch gehen in ein neues Jahr. 
Noch will das alte unsre Herzen quälen,
Noch drückt uns böser Tage schwere Last.
Ach, Herr, gib unsern aufgeschreckten Seelen
Das Heil, für das du uns geschaffen hast. 
Und reichst du uns den schweren Kelch, den bittern
Des Leids, gefüllt bis an den höchsten Rand,
So nehmen wir ihn dankbar ohne Zittern
Aus deiner guten und geliebten Hand. 
Doch willst du uns noch einmal Freude schenken
An dieser Welt und ihrer Sonne Glanz,
Dann wolln wir des Vergangenen gedenken
Und dann gehört dir unser Leben ganz. 
Lass warm und hell die Kerzen heute flammen,
Die du in unsre Dunkelheit gebracht.
Führ, wenn es sein kann, wieder uns zusammen.
Wir wissen es, dein Licht scheint in der Nacht. 
Wenn sich die Stille nun tief um uns breitet,
So lass uns hören jenen vollen Klang
Der Welt, die unsichtbar sich um uns weitet,
All deiner Kinder hohen Lobgesang. 
Von guten Mächten wunderbar geborgen,
Erwarten wir getrost, was kommen mag.
Gott ist bei uns am Abend und am Morgen
Und ganz gewiss an jedem neuen Tag.
- Dietrich Bonhoeffer 

a very blessed 2016 to you all. 

Tuesday 1 December 2015

Tuesday Tunes | Wir sind Helden

wir sind helden has been one of my favourite bands for many years. i saw them live for the first time when i was 13 and have loved them ever since. judith holofernes, the singer writes extremely intelligent, funny and thoughtful lyrics. 
this song i am sharing today only started to appeal to me recently. i have been feeling quite homesick and a bit lost and the words of this song (it is titled 'bring me home') perfectly capture those feelings. 

happy tuesday.

Sunday 29 November 2015

German Sunday | Spaziergang

i love the german word for 'walk' - it is called spaziergang. it expresses more than just walking, it implies leisure. it doesn't merely describe a means of getting from one place to another but it is about walking for walking's sake, without necessarily a clear destination. if i hear someone telling me about a spaziergang i expect deep conversations and being lost deeply in thought, i see green valleys and woods and hear the birds singing. i dream of sitting on a bench with a book and stopping off for a drink or ice cream or cake. it makes me imagine lazy sundays, sunshine or rain and umbrellas.
it is a word that feels like a holiday.