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Saturday, 27 February 2010
Twitter, litter, and Jehovah's Witnesses
First of all, apologies to those of you who follow me on Twitter and received an 'inappropriate' Direct Message from me - I got hacked, but it's now back in my control. It was a rather distasteful moment finding out someone was using my name for such purposes.
We visited Andy's parents yesterday as well as some friends and their new baby, which was lovely. On the way we were travelling up a dual carriageway and Andy pointed out the exorbitant amount of litter on the verges. Littering always makes me twitchy - the only 'club' I joined at school was the Environmental Club. We used to look after the Recycling Pavilion; I'm not sure why it was called a 'pavilion'; it was a hut really, with appropriate places for different kinds of glass, plastic, paper etc. I remember often being nominated to remove any spiders so that my friends could go inside without shrieking.
Anyway. We did river cleans and beach cleans and it was very satisfying to see the result. Littering is so out of my mindset, upbringing and beliefs I honestly can't understand why people do it. I can't imagine not caring about spoiling our environment. It baffles me.
This morning I had my chat with the Jehovah's Witnesses, a cheerful lady, now accompanied frequently by her mother, with whom I laugh and chat and crack jokes. This seems to me far more healthy than hiding behind the sofa or thumping them over the head with my bible shouting 'YOU HERETIC!' and chasing them down the path. I appreciate that not all Jehovah's Witnesses are as easy going and certainly if a more militant group appeared I might be tempted to hide (bible thumping being a touch violent for me).
Actually I rather enjoy our good humoured chats. I've agreed to work through their little booklet with them (pictured). It involves reading paragraphs and getting my bible out and reading it on the doorstep. This rather amuses me because it is certainly an exercise in confidence building - doing it in front of the whole road!! We've not reached much controversial territory yet; I know the clashes in belief will begin to emerge so that will be interesting. I rather feel this is part of my witness - again rather amusing! I know some would not agree to my reading their materials and being so willing to discuss them - but I think it's good to understand what they believe and share any differences. I want to explain what I believe with gentleness and respect.
What this reminds me of is how much I need to know my bible in order to answer questions about my beliefs. Despite spending three years at bible college, reading regular bible notes since an early age, reading the bible in a year (as I did last year), I know I need constant revision. I'm simply not designed to retain information without revisiting it and using it. I need to be constantly learning; I am so aware of things I want to grasp more fully, be quicker to remember, be able to access immediately. I'm praying that I can find ways of immersing myself; ways of finding those words which are on the 'tip of my tongue' but I can't quite articulate in a way I would like. I need to use my time efficiently. I need to realise learning is never ended...that I need to seek continually, for all my days.
Enough waffle, methinks - and excessive use of the word 'rather', as well...
'Garbage' sign image from stock.xchng