What have we been up to in the last few months? As predicted, life in the Clevely household did change somewhat. The boys have settled into three full days of playschool, I found a job and Nick has become even more busy. I could leave it at that, our life in a peanut-shell, but let me elaborate to glorify our Lord who directs our paths.
Well, after many weeks of job-hunting, I became a temp for “Only the Best” personnel agency. This was fairly successful and even quite enjoyable, despite being thrown into the company of complete strangers and having to pick up where the permanent person left off. Fortunately not too much is expected of temps, so between answering the phone and the odd bit of faxing, I got some reading done and polished up on my short-hand skills, just in case. It was quite disconcerting not being able to find a job, since I have quite varied work experience and wasn’t aiming particularly high. However, the Lord had the right job waiting, and I am now the proud secretary/PA to Martin Holdt, our pastor at Constantia. I currently work three mornings a week, although we anticipate it will be extended to four mornings in the near future. It is about four kilometres from home, and takes 15 minutes in the morning to drop the boys off at playschool and get to the church. I love the work, the environment, and of course, have a super boss! Looking back, it was clear why none of my other job applications were successful - God had His plans perfectly set up, we just had to wait for His timing.
I am also now playing guitar for Sunday School, for the open session. The kids range from about three years old to 16, so finding songs that all will enjoy is a cross I must bear. I occasionally play in church as well in the evening services.
What can I say about Nick that wouldn’t be a surprise? His workload is constantly increasing, as is his library. A church member took Nick to the OM book sale where he was ecstatic to have over R1000 of books bought for him. He picked up a lot of good commentaries, usually priced around R300, at a tenth of the price. Our Saturday night Bible Study, held in our home, is constantly growing. This last Saturday we had a record of 20 people, with barely enough chairs to accommodate. It was brilliant! Nick has been going through his “Decalogue” assignment with the group, so we are dealing with ethical issues from a biblical viewpoint. Some fiery debates have been sparked, but all in good spirit.
Watch out for Nick’s debut album. He has put down a vocal and guitar track for three of his original songs, at Malcolm Finlay’s studio, Macsound. It has long been Nick’s desire to record, and opportunity finally came knocking. He will be doing more sessions over the next few months and we’ll see where it leads.
He will also start preaching at Emmaus, Constantia’s daughter church, more regularly to gain experience. The Friday night youth group is a small group which is plodding a bit, but Nick is raring to go with his new series on evangelism, starting next month. We pray that this will bring the kids into the group.
And the boys, oh the boys. They have hit on a delightful game called “I want what you have” and it starts as soon as they wake up and gets played regularly during the day, except for when they are at playschool, where they are separated. The rules are simple: 1. Locate brother. 2. Establish that he is really enjoying what he is playing with. 3. Remove said toy. 4. Whine, cry or shout when offended brother tries to retrieve article in prior possession. It’s a great game. Sometimes I let them sort themselves out, but I try to have a wooden spoon handy at all times, which speaks louder than I do. When they’re not playing the game, they’re lovely children. Caleb turned three last week. He can be quite funny in the way he describes things, like Jesus being on the cross, then going to heaven, then falling out of heaven and “tjoep”, into his heart. His theology needs a bit of work, but he has the general idea. Aaron has a small vocab now, although usually his words are interchangeable. “Daddeeeeee” can mean “daddy” or “mommy”, or in fact, any other person he knows. “Teddeeeeee” means “teddy” or any soft toy which could pass as a teddy. He has learned shoe and juice, mostly because they sound so similar, and bottle, which sounds like “ottl”. Uh uh (with bent elbow presented to you) and uh (with a nod) are other favourite communication tools. He is still a tiny boy - hopefully he will undergo a growth spurt before the age of two, at which age they are apparently half their adult height.