blood and fire... nah Neil and Eric be where its at!!

Posted by Teen Bean

so for the past two days we (as the transit girls) have gone up to sunburry ct (in london somewhere... and only 20 min from Windsor castle for what i learned today!) to garden for the Salvation Army. Now the Salvation Army is an organization that i just don't understand. i wont get into all of it because i don't understand all of it... but the bottom line is that i just don't like the way they push structure so much. I know they are really trying to encourage people to just dig into the discipline of God, but to me its just to wear this uniform, stand up, sit down, shine your shoes, sing this hymn... ok now you can go to heaven. I totally know this is being way to judging on them, but its just the way i am. 


so it doesn't help at all that we go to this salvation army "headquarter/ retreat center" and just have to serve them. it just pushes my buttons in more ways then one. Plus they never really know what to do with us... so you know how you go somewhere and people don't know what to do with you so they find you busy work... yeah that is how i feel there most the time. And its a freaking long haul there as well. This one woman that works "the grounds" just wonders around checking up on us... and every time i see her headed our way i physically have to remind myself not to break multiple of the 10 commandments. 

to say the least... i wasn't looking forward to these two days in the least. But sense starting my last term here i really want to give my whole heart to all the things we are asked to do... all the things we are asked to do lots of times includes things i really don't want to... but i just want to have a better servants heart about it. monday night as we are preparing for bed i sit and just pray to God that we could just have some amount of joy over the next two days.... Little did i know.

so we arrive at Sunbury Court and are greeted by two normal but slightly quirky looking older gentlemen. They introduced themselves as Neil and Eric... Yorkshire men.. not Englishmen as i was later corrected on! The next two days we spent working along side these two guys was one of the most educations and inspirational. These guys have been friends for over 60 years. They had such good laughs with each other and equally took such good digs at each other they had me in bits most the time i was there. At one moment I was working along side Eric, fondly digging a little whole for my flower to go in, singing my heart out (to my favorite beyonce song "to the left") and Eric just stopped digging and looked over at me and with all seriousness asked "do you know how to whistle..." I fell to the ground laughing... i mean this guy had hearing aids in both his ears and my voice was to much for him... it was beautiful. 

Neil i think by the end of the two days became my hero. He was a tell like he sees it guy. He had such a servants heart... just giving his all to making these gardens for the salvation army look prize worthy... but that didn't stop him from voicing his opinion on everything from the misplacing of certain buildings to the laziness of certain grounds keepers. I loved the way he challenged authority and had no regard for worthless rules. There was a sign posted above a table of books that read "please feel free to help yourself to anything that interest you"... he said he went into the manager and said that we would take the chandelier (he show us the £6500 chandelier in one of the dinning rooms... it was incredible and ridiculous!)... the manager just looked at him dumbfounded and then Neil explained himself and the manager just stumbled over his words as he explained the sign was for the books on that table... I just laughed out loud! my kind of guy... clever! 

so in between gardening and laughing and joking... i realized how great God is to be good enough to me to answer my prayer for a good day... and who would have thought it would have come through the wonderful personalities of Neil and Eric... a classic "pinky and the brain" duo if i ever saw one! cheers

This entry was posted on Wednesday, May 13, 2009 at Wednesday, May 13, 2009 . You can follow any responses to this entry through the comments feed .

1 comments

Don't judge a book by it's cover.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Salvation_Army.

One of the most radical and innovatice Christian movements there has ever been. Let's be praying for them, not criticising and judging them (which is not excusable with the defence 'it's just who I am'.

Let's pray that they would recapture the heart that first propelled them onto the streets to serve those who needed to experience the Kingdom of God in action.

We have a lot to learn from these guys.

May 14, 2009 at 5:18 PM

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