This blog post is dedicated to +Sieni Voorwinden
When I first thought about writing a blog, it took me a while to get my head around what it is that I wanted to say, what I wanted to share (basically what it is that you want made public).
I had thought about writing a blog to help people who had lost a partner as it has been almost 8 months since I've lost mine.
I have about 42 drafts sitting in my drafts folder of unpublished blog posts.
I thought a good New Year's resolution would be to clear these drafts this month.
That first paragraph above was the beginning of this blog post in draft form way back in. . . hmm. . . this time last year in fact. So I'm going through all the files and finishing them off. It's the only way I think I can start to clear the writer's block in the other work I should be focusing on as well!
Today's blog post features the Bone Thugs n Harmony classic Crossroad. It is particularly fitting as my good friend Sieni just received news this morning that her father passed away in Aotearoa.
God bless you working on a plan to heaven
Follow the Lord all 24/7 days God is who we praise
Even though the devil's all up in my face
But He keeping me safe and in my place, say grace
Our parents instil in us from an early age about the importance of serving God in whatever we are called to do. The early teachings of learning to read the bible in Samoan, praying in Samoan and participating in White Sunday (an annual service lead by children and dedicated to them leading through the enactment of bible stories, singing and dancing). I see this as the plan to heaven where we are taught the rudiments of the plan, together with life experiences that we collect along the way, where our parents try to steer us on the path that they believe is right for us (most commonly based on their own previous past mistakes that they wish us to avoid).
Oh what can I do it's all about our family and how we roll
Can I get a witness let it unfold
We living our lives to eternal our soul aye-oh-aye-oh
There is the old adage that "the family that prays together, stays together". Family prayer devotions are commonplace in the evenings for Samoan families, particularly if they are regular churchgoers and they follow the bible readings organised under themes set out by the International Bible Reading Association (IBRA).
It's steadily creeping up on the family
Exactly how many days we got lasting
While you laughing we're passing, passing away
So y'all go rest y'all souls
Cos I know I'm gonna meet you up at the crossroads
The thing about death is that nobody knows when it's coming.
Death is like a thief in the night, it comes through the town with stealth and takes loved ones away.
I think my attitude to death has changed significantly.
Rather than thinking about the loss, I think about loved ones being taken to a better place.
People see it as being 'promoted to glory'.
I choose to celebrate the lives of those who have passed and carry on their legacy by living the lessons they have taught me.
I hope my friend finds strength, inner peace, love and light.
The beauty of death is that it ends the suffering that sickness brings to our frail human bodies.
Our souls will rejoice in heaven with our maker.
What our loved ones leave behind is the hope - the hope that one day we will see them again.
See you at the crossroads, crossroads, crossroads
So you won't be lonely. . .
Manuia lou malaga Tamā. . .