Lowlights – the difficult times
2014 was quite a challenging year for me – it challenged me to grow in trust, leadership, coping… just sticking with the challenges, week after week. I am thankful that all in all it was a good year. And I am thankful for all the wonderful people who encouraged me, prayed for me, supported me and the ship project – a huge thank you to everyone who stood with me in this past year…
I love the poems by the Persian poet Hafiz… wonderful words….and deep prayers:
“This is the kind of friend you are…
Without making me realize my soul´s anguished history,you slip into my house at night.
And while I am sleeping, you silent carry off all my suffering and sordid past in your beautiful hands…”
This course is amazing. In 2011 I met a woman who was seriously overweight and unhappy with some aspects of her life. Some days later I sat on a beach and thought how I could help her and others who wanted to be stronger in life and more happy.
As I am a professional life coach and passionate about passing on skills I decided to develop an online training course to strengthen people in 3 areas:
Because change takes time the course runs for 3 months – with two mails per week and a Facebook page to share experiences. And it is a mixture of inspiration, teaching about life skills questions to think about and suggestions for immediate action.
Since I implemented the course in German it has helped houndreds of people to
In October the first LEA course starts in English
It almost makes me cry that now – after several years !!! of translation work, dozens of checks, setting up the hompeage etc. the course is now available in English for the first time. It is my hope and my dream that it will inspire and assist numerous people around the world to live their lives stronger and more happily. I guess the LEA course is one of the biggest gifts that I can give to the world.
For more info have a look at Lea-Training.com
What you can do I would like to see as many people as possible to benefit from LEA.
I am looking forward to share this wonderful experience with you and your friends – longing to assist you to make your lives stronger and more joyful.
At the moment I am sometimes renting out my bedroom to Berlin visitors. This helps to raise money for a ship. And it also gives you great experiences. At the moment a historian is living there. Last night I told him that I had just been to a talk by David Solomon, a jewish guy who does the whole of jewish history in one hour. He said: “That´s no big thing – I can tell the whole jewish history while I am standing on one foot” Said so – pulled up his leg and exclaimed: “They wanted to kill us. We survived. Let´s go and enjoy some food!”
I told about the vision and the beginning of it in a blog entry called The ressurection of a dream. It´s been quite a journey. Challenging and rough at times – joyful and amazing at others.
What we have done so far:
More than 100 People from half a dozen of different nations have come here to help and be inspired. For many of them it is encouraging to see: It is hard work to make a dream come true. But it is possible. And it is a joy to see the financial and practical miracles happen.
My vision for the ship is to provide a place for inspiration and restoration. So it has been a special joy to welcome one man whose life hat just fallen to pieces. He came here for 10 days of reflection, restoration and coaching and told me: “It was so good to talk to someone like you who does not offer recepies. No one in my life ever took so much time for me as you did!”
It makes me cry to think about that…great man, but no one ever really took the time to listen, to encourage … and it makes me feel that providing that space for people to be, to be encouraged and to receive coaching is the right thing to do.
What´s next – autum projects
For the “removing of the rust on the decks” I have started a fundraising campaign as this is quite an expensive part. It will take us about 100 hours to remove the rust and paint, but the paint is a pain in the neck….Good ship paint hat lasts for a decade costs about 10 Euro / Dollar / Pounds per Liter. And we need about 200 !!! liters + electricity + some stuff to fill holes with.
So a friend made a cool movie: Fighting the rust – the epic battle
Togehter we will make it!
During the last few weeks, I’ve been preoccupied with the question of how I can deepen my inner connection to Jesus. On the search for answers, I pulled a book out of my “To-Read” pile: Gestillt (Satisfied) by David Zindel from Neufeld Publishing. The subtitle “Night conversations with David” explains what it’s about.
At first, I was irritated. As a publisher, it is important to me to have a good framework for a storyline, and this was missing. A stressed-out and unhappily married man writes letters to King David, and the author barely even makes the effort to create a framework for it other than an introductory letter that communicates to the reader how the publication of the letters in Heaven is contentiously discussed. I think there should have been a little more creativity. I would have described, perhaps, how the good man reads Psalm 23 “I shall not want” in the evening and then writes a rather angry retort to the author, lays it in his Bible, and is astounded the next evening to find an answer on the back of his letter… actually from David.
After the framework, I was further irritated about the stupidity of Reinhard, the writer. At the beginning, he is presented as someone who blames all of his marital problems exclusively on his wife. I know contemporaries, men as well as women, who primarily see the cause of problems in the other person. Yet, I don’t think anyone could be so dumb as to have zero self-awareness like Reinhard at the beginning of the book – at least I hope not!!!
Once I was over the first hump, the book began to fascinate me. King David writes from the perspective of eternity looking back on his life, and he’s learned a few things. I liked how he encouraged Reinhard again and again not to seek fulfillment/satisfaction in things, rather in interacting with God. He wrote and explained this over and over in various ways and nuances… it was very good for me.
A few of the most beautiful thoughts from the book (quoted from memory):
Thankful, I lay a good book aside… the valuable thoughts from it will accompany me for a while still.
– See more at: http://kerstinpur.de/glaube/gestillt/#sthash.7HXT8JFD.dpuf
“Each year in preparation for Easter, I ask the Lord if there is anything I should abstain from for Lent. This year the answer that I heard in my heart after prayer came to me as a surprise: Abstain from doubting.
Not doubting Him. Not doubting His goodness towards me – in spite of obvious challenges I was facing. And in spite of disappointments and broken dreams, the challenge was: Do not allow yourself the ‘luxury’ of doubt. Doubt is an easy way out. When you doubt you do not need to dare. Dare to trust. Dare to try new things.
And boy do I need courage. For 12 years I dreamt about having a space where I could host people: (young) people who would want to learn with me and from me, who would like to stay for a few days or weeks to learn, be mentored, and share life. Twice it looked as though the dream would come true, and twice it crashed again, painfully, violently. I cried. I couldn’t understand God. Wasn’t it His dream after all?!
In the last month the dream surfaced again, but not in the form of a flat that was big enough for living, hosting, and holding seminars, but in the form of a SHIP. It is simply cheaper to buy and renovate a ship than to buy a flat and so much more fun. I found a great ship on Ebay (!!!) – an old GDR army ship/torpedo boat that was later turned into a holiday ship. I bought it, I will renovate it and make it a place for sharing life, and most likely I will name it “Heart of Berlin.”
I am really excited about this project. It will have a seminar/coaching room, guest rooms for hosting up to four people, and a place for me to work and live. Looking forward to creating a space for disciples, learners, nomads, and people who want to grow.
The last two years were years of tears, toil, and miracles. The outer skin of the ship is renovated. All the rust inside and outside is removed. The ship is insulated and has floors in some rooms and many new windows.
I experienced times of frustration when things were not moving as fast as I had hoped. I have seen miracles of provision, miracles of help through people and finances coming at the right time. I cried a lot, both with frustration and joy! One of the greatest moments was when one of the professional helpers decided to start following Jesus as a result of spending a few days on the ship with us.
Now it looks as if we are moving towards the finishing line and that there are only a few months of work ahead:
Do you want to share the dream?
The vision is to create a space where those who need orientation can find a place to rest, reflect, be restored, and receive professional help in Berlin, the capital of Germany where lots of young people are searching for answers. You can be part of the dream. You can make it possible in three ways: prayer, giving, and practical help.
I know how much can go wrong in any project, but I also know that the opposite can happen: things going incredibly smoothly, God’s favor on all sides, deadlines met. So I really do appreciate prayer for wisdom and God’s favor and blessing… and yes, I don’t mind a word of encouragement now and then. I write updates about once per month; let me know if you would like to receive them.
– Gifts and loans
My friends and I work as much as we can on the ship, but to pay for the rest of the materials and the professional work, I still need about 50,000 Euros ($60,000). This is far more than I can earn as an author or publisher in a few months, and I also have to pay back loans that people have given me. I am incredibly thankful for every small or big gift or loan. The easiest way to donate is by using my paypal: Info @ down-to-earth.de (leave out those blanks – I just put them there to avoid spam).
– Practical help
To finish the work on the ship, I do need a lot of practical help – both from people who know what they are doing like plumbers, electricians, carpenters, ship builders, and from anybody with two hands – everybody can scratch off rust and paint a ship. So if you’re up for a working holiday on the outskirts of Berlin or know of people who are, let me know. This is also great for teams of volunteers: I have had several teams come and work on the ship for a few days, and they moved the project forward a lot!
April: Information that the dry dock costs would be 3 times higher !!! than expected. Lots of friends helped with loans and donations – and miraculously the dramatic bill was able to be paid!
June/July: Mediation to solve conflicts with the ship builder I worked with and then – as differences and different expectations could not be resolved – the sad ending of our working relationship. Still sad – without him I would probably never have dared to start the project.
August: Moving the ship from Hamburg to Berlin – what a journey! The new birth of Bernd number 2 who entrusted his life to Jesus. Continuing renovation on the ship with a steady stream of friends helping me to move things forward and assisting the professionals. Challenging interpersonal relationship with the Berlin dry dock owner. Phew.
August/December: Professional training in a well-founded technique to reach goals and an extremely good trauma-relief therapy method. I’m very happy that I could increase my skills and am more equipped to handle tough stuff.
April: A stupid law suit – someone suing me for something I did not even do – forgetting to mention a photographer on a picture we published. We had mentioned her, she had just not looked properly. A little break at the baltic sea for gaining new strength.
Hopes for the next year of my life:
– Finishing the ship – praying for more helpers and finances to complete the project. Thankful for everyone who is helping – may it be small or big!
– Staying in peace – letting my soul be stilled by God.
What is the difference between a successful person and a less successful one? Successful people stumble strategically. When they fall down, which is unavoidable, they look to see if there’s perhaps a dust particle or seed on the floor. One of my goals in life is to become a person who stumbles strategically. Or in other words, I would like to be a person who makes fertilizer out of the crap that sometimes happens in life.
– See more at: http://kerstinpur.de/erfolg/strategisch-stolpern/#sthash.ntGEaBDi.dpuf