Thursday, 23 August 2018

Balancing Work and Rest...

Ok so I know I said I would be late writing this post but you know what, I decided to write this before I go back to England tomorrow rather than after. It's only been a week and a half since my last post so I'm sorry there isn't much new news. No don't stop reading, I still have things I want to share.

This last week and a half have really been a learning curve for me and not really in the way I expected. It's very tempting sometimes to share only the good points of my life here, of which there are many, but how will people know how to pray if I don't share the hard times too. Sometimes it's ok to turn around and say 'yes that was tough' but I know that God is sovereign over it all. After the highs of the summer with both camps I was involved in, I was quite looking forward to a week where I could relax and recuperate ready for the busy new year starting soon. I didn't expect it to be one of the toughest weeks I've had here - I was very lonely. Now I'm not blaming anyone here apart from myself (I'm really not writing this to make people feel guilty!). I purposefully didn't arrange meetings with people because I wanted the space away from people to recharge. Unfortunately both my flatmates were away for the week and the Bible study and my language lesson on the Wednesday were cancelled due to a national holiday. It essentially meant that I was by myself for the week. I had nothing to prepare and so I was just left with self motivated study - that was sadly lacking that week.

Before violins start playing in the background, I've realised that although it was hard at the time, it taught me valuable lessons about myself. However much I see myself as an introvert, I still need to be around people. God didn't create us to be alone, He created us as a community and this is something that I really need to remember.

So then how do I balance work and rest, time by myself and time with other people? It could become very tempting to go to the other extreme and fill my time with so much stuff I don't have time to feel lonely but that's not healthy either. I'm not going to claim I have the answers. I'm still figuring out this whole ministry life thing. I was, however, encouraged to plan things for my week this week and to try and have some things in my diary so I'm not left so isolated. Overall I just need to trust God. I know I'm in the right place serving him and I also know that I will have bad weeks, it's how I react to them that's important.

I'm now going to turn this blog post into an advert for Slovenia! I decided that I needed exciting plans for this last Monday. In fact I actually have been very busy this week which has been great! On Monday I decided that I wanted to travel to Lake Bled to go on the toboggan slide down the side of the mountain. If you've never heard of Lake Bled, Google it! It's one of my favourite places in Slovenia (apparently everyone else loves it too!) I persuaded my friend to come with me and I drove us there (yes I've learnt how to drive on the other side of the road). It was a beautiful day and really reminded me of the beauty and glory of God's creation. It was a great time of fellowship, both with my friend who came with me but also with some friends who live in the near by town of Radovljica. It was great to able to hear how God is working in their church and in another part of Slovenia. Basically it was a day I really needed, not just for the fun but for the fellowship and the joy of spending time here with other Christians.

On a completely different note, I will be travelling back to the UK tomorrow for the weekend. I will literally only be in the country until Monday. I will be spending a lot of time in transit (Ljubljana - Venice - London - St. Albans - London - St. Albans - Southampton - Swindon - Bristol - London - Ljubljana) so please could you be praying for travelling mercies, for energy and that I would both be encouraged and be an encouragement to all the people I spend time with this weekend!

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