Thursday, 23 May 2013

Summertime and Gathering Stories

I don't know about you but summer for me is a time of writing new stories in my life. Whether it is the long days and plentiful hours of daylight or the feeling of coming out of hibernation from a long winter, I don't know. But I do know that when I re run the most inspiring times of my life so far they usually involved summers. Singing along with an African choir in the bush under a blanket of a thousand stars, watching the sea hit the shore and feeling like an inhabitant of the ancient world in Athens, seeing a humpback whale jump my boat in South Africa and feeling like the smallest creature in the whole wide world. Powerful stories that I am utterly grateful for and that define who I have become.

Summers are also a time when I collect other people's stories. Stories I treasure and that define me as much as my own. Brave, brave Donata and her beautiful life of service to the disabled children of Northern Zambia (who, can you believe it, I'm going to see in London in a weeks time!), the residents of Twapia (meaning 'broken') near Ndola on my first trip to Zambia with Tearfund forming co-operatives and battling poverty with determination and grit. Alcestis from Athens who took in abandoned animals into her tiny apartment because she couldn't bare to see them go hungry. These are the stories that have made me grow.

This Summer you might be resigned to being at home and willing the weather to co-operate and bring you a little sunshine but that doesn't mean inspiration and life changing stories are beyond you. Tearfund are running a very exciting campaign called 'The Choice'. Have a quick peek at the first teaser video, hot off the press...
I've yet to meet someone via Tearfund who hasn't thoroughly inspired me so I am really looking forward to being part of this journey. The stories I have gathered so far have deeply enhanced my life. I credit them for a large part of who I am. Because of the people I have met, particularly those who live in poverty, I live gratefully and more joyfully than before. They remind me that true happiness comes in unexpected packages, in service, in love and in thankfulness. So, hey, what are you waiting for? Click and get inspired this summer!

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