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330

Getting a lift to the conference venue rather than a bus and two trains!  Welcoming the Irish Relay Workers and a reunion with a friend I hadn’t seen for a year.

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Buzzing.

Just spent the night speaking to teens about Daniel.  Great bunch, great dynamics, great drama, great God.  Loved it, loved it, loved it!  I got the chance to sing a couple of my songs and hear them beg for my myspace details (they’re only young – they don’t know any better, bless em!).  They totally LOVED acting out the stories, did it really well and seemed to grasp the actual application of it all.  I thought that working with students would have put me off teens, but nope!

Another whiff of recording opportunities…  Watch this (my) space!

I LOVE the blogosphere.  Its geeky, naval-gazingish (or nombrilleux pour ceux qui parlent francais) and downright time-consuming, but I LOVE it.  Tonight (when I should be wrapping and packing and sleeping), I read posts that made me laugh, cry and hope all over again.

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217

Hmm… Oh!  I know!  Ramore Strawboffee dessert.  Yum, yum, yum.  An afternoon nap and  then a wee jaunt to the stones-kicked-by (!) household was a nice way to pass an evening.

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203

Hmmm… Oh – I know!  I loved this morning’s bowl of chocolat chaud with breakfast… yum!

This afternoon, I travelled away from Loches where the conference was to Tours to stay with Marc (Dutch) and Jody (American) the missionary couple I did my Bible College Placement with.  it was sooooo good to walk into their home and feel immediately at home.  I’ve been so excited at the prospect of being able to ask all my questions rather than being the one being asked and tonight was soooo good for that.  We had such a great chat that made me feel freer and lighter than I had in weeks.  The funny thing was, we talked about one of the very biggest things on my mind, without me even bringing it up!

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201

The French IFES’ movement (and my excuse to come to France) started this afternoon and I was launched into French conversation and singing French praise which was cool.

However, the best conversation of the day started in French and ended up in English… 

I did a Bible College placement in Tours in 2005 and met Raphael and his wife at the church I was working with.  Back then, he was doing a little volunteer work with the GBU (French IFES/CUs) and I got to hang out a little with him at a CU meeting he was at.  So, because of his links, he was at the conference.  The moment of recognition and welcome was really cool – he’s so fun and generally one of the nicest people I’ve encountered.  But, anyway… we had a great conversation about life, discipleship, evangelism, France, God, faith… And he invited me to come lead worship at a conference in France in November!  It was just SUCH an encouraging and inspiring conversation.  Awesome.

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160

I really enjoyed church this morning.  My church isn’t big or flashy, but its a managable wee community that I feel I can actually get to know.  A no-nonsense chat with a lady I’d more or less just met about prayer and her son’s faith; some inspiring teaching from Acts; a chance to speak French with a real-life Marseillais; banter in the Martin Family Tour Bus…

A relaxed game of pool and impromptu fresh pancakes with some students, not to mention a random rant or two about life and love in general!

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158

Not just saying this because soapbox did and I feel I have to reciprocate… but we DID have a great team meeting this morning!  Discussion, interaction, productivity all laced with a good dose of banter!  I suppose its the contrast of working alone a lot of the time; just being able to share with people in the same line of work is pretty refreshing and encouraging.

I picked up a 12 string guitar that I’m borrowing for a while.  Gonna go all alternative country… watch this (my)space!

Then I caught up over dinner and a movie with a friend.  Well, actually the movie bit didn’t work out but the thought was there!  She was in sparkling form and it was good to talk.

I got to see the centre of the why-not-smile-diy-disaster drama…! It looks good now!

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150

I LOVE to teach.  I think its what I’m made to do.  It may not be perfect, it may not be 100% articulate or sorted or refined, but I love to share what I’m learning to help others learn.

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149

A satisfyingly productive morning when a talk came together despite me thinking I had NOTHING to say!

SLOBS looked to be a difficult one, but again I was overwhelmed by the real sense that the Small Group Leaders are growing so much.  I loved their engagement with Scripture, with each other and with me – what a blessing.  I am reminded that its often in the struggle that we grow stronger.

A wee jaunt over to Derry to do an address at a ‘Lent’ service in a church – a chance to see some of the students there again and chat a little.  One man’s comment about being glad to hear that ‘students aren’t all bad’ made the CU movement all the more fresh and exciting to me too.

I called a friend I haven’t spoken to in almost a year.  It was easy – I just picked up the phone and did it!  As the phone rang I was thinking that I feel like a different person since we last spoke.  That made me nervous, but I discovered she’s been on a similar journey and that our friendship is still strong, still fresh and still organic!  Praise God for friends like that.  Praise God for growth in difficult times.

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Today was much more chilled out than I thought it would be.

An unexpected meeting with 2 Small Group Leaders who are so eager to lead their group well became not just a good study, but also a good chance to get to know them better.  Its such a privilege to do this kind of thing as a ‘job’.

Being part of a supporters’ event was harder than just attending one, but it went well (eventually – turns out I waffle for at least 3 minutes before getting over myself and starting to make sense.  Apparently it was a ‘good representation’ of what I’m like in general.  Thanks ‘smoothie’ 😉 !!!). It was great to meet a bunch of people who meet regularly in Omagh to pray for student ministry – I’m hopefully gonna get a wee jaunt down to see them all!  Also, I love to introduce ‘my’ people to each other and see them interact (a new dynamic to this is when they sheepishly admit ‘i read your blog sometimes…’!).  Good night gone well methinks.

 A got ANOTHER photo published – in a novel!  It has my name in the credits listings inside where all the publisher details and all are!!!! How COOL is THAT?!?  One day I might even profit from all these published photos…

A wee chat with my bestest friend.  I love her.

A wee chat with my bestest housemate.  I love her too.

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