Getting to travel is always a great expedition. It comes with mixed feelings; the fear of heights and the anticipation for a totally new experience. People variedly tend to have expectations, most of which are never met. For me, the Denmark journey was more than fulfilling…
The welcoming statement was quite broad and indelible…
Joyline (my colleague) and I had to travel two days earlier (on 15th October) to Copenhagen for the NOSA (Nordic Student Alliance) conference. This meant going to a new place on our own. This is not to say that we are afarid of new places, but the realization that we were to find our own way in a land where people speak through maps kept dawning with a thud… All along, we thought we could at least find someone at the airport or more details as to how we were to get to the venue. To our amazement, the coordinator was still held up at work by the time we arrived (at around 3pm). That only blew us to the daunting task of looking for ways of using up the three hours that we had at our disposal…
The language that was being used by most of the people we met remained to be Danish. I personlaly tried going to some of the shops; and surprisingly, the attandants kept speaking to me in Danish!! Of course, I explained my dogma, but it was quite tough since they are not very confident in English… And I can truly state that listening to a dialect that even “some Norwegians” consider quite difficult can be highly disheartening!
The visit to Copenhagen came with lots of discoveries. To start with, we boarded an amazing train for the first time. Sitting down comfortably was duly great and aptly comfortable. It gave me the fulfilment of apprecaiting technology. The train was so fast such that no sooner had we enjoyed our sitting than we arrived to our intended destination.
It wasn’t just the train that stood out throughout the stay. The Metro, an automated electric train, remained a great means of transport. Sitting in the Metro got me thinking of how much the technological advancements are easing the human locomotion and enhancing easier interactions.
It is amazing how Denmark and moreso, Copenhagen is greatly endowed with wonderful displays of architecture. Some of the buildings’ designs just blew me off…
The Mark drama:
Our traveling early to Copenhnagen was so that we could participate in the “Mark Drama”. This is a 90-minute perfomance of the Mark’s gospel with all the action and drama in it. It was amazing for me to be part of the whole procession. Taking part in the two feeding episodes, as a disciple, really made me realize how human the disciples were , continually forgeting the doings of the Lord; to see how compassionate Christ is to both the crowds and his disciples.
The Mark drama helped me to deepen a clear view of Christ: He was fully human and fully God. He was fully human, and thus, went through pain and had real human emotions. He was moved at the downplaying of the temple into a “den of thieves and robbers” and whipped the traders out. He struggled in the garden of Gethsemane and cried out loudly at the cross… He went through actual human sufferings; all for me! That breaks me yet makes me glad…
He was fully God; and thus, couldn’t be trapped by the various snares of the pharisees and scribes. He predicted His own death and it came to pass. He declared that “It is finished” and those words still linger on and on…. He silenced the storm; healed the sick; cast out demons, which were aware of him and wasn’t limited by death because he raised a number from the dead…
This drama wasn’t just a performance for me but a moment to reckon my place with the Lord Jesus! His Word remains to be the fundamental foundation for my passion and content…
Meeting new people:
The Conference brought together students and staff from all the five Nordic countries: Norway (which I was part of), Denmark (the hosts), Iceland, Sweden and Finland.
Meeting the people from all over was exhilarating and remained to be a wonderful experience. Hearing the various languages being spoken ensured diversity yet united by the common bond in Christ… One thing that was strikingly notable was the fact that every one of the five countries has a special type of chocolate for which it is acclaimed!!
The teachings at this confrence were profoundly significant in our lives, both as Christians and Christ’s agents in this perverse generation. “If we respond to what we have understood, we understand more and more,” said Andrew page, the Conference Bible expositor. He belabored the centrality of God’s Word in all that we do. This is essentially what should stir us up… Our reaching out should, therefore, be done with the understanding that the power is in Christ, and we are the vesssels.
I was dumbfounded to listen to Bodil Skjøtt’s exegesis of the whole Bible in one continuous story. She actually came through so clearly yet so simply by stating that the story still needs to be told to all; and that God is still speaking, so the question remains “Are we listening?” “The Gospel is a story that needs fresh telling and not a concept that needs fresh ideas,” she firmly asserted.
There was an excellent worship team that led us through the various praise and prayer moments. I have to reiterate that I enjoyed their choice of the songs. The song titled “Lead me to the cross by Hillsongs” specifically touched me with this chorus:
Lead me to the cross
Where Your love poured out
Bring me to my knees
Lord I lay me down
Rid me of myself
I belong to You
Lead me, lead me to the cross
And my prayer was in the next song “The wonder of the cross by Vicky Beeching”
May I never lose the wonder,
The wonder of the cross.
May I see it like the first time
Standing as a sinner lost,
Undone by mercy and left speechless,
Watching wide eyed at the cost.
May I never lose the wonder,
The wonder of the cross.
Thank you Lord for the opportunity to explore you more…