Oh faff

Oh faff I said as I backed into my Father-in-law’s car.

“You have a lot of faff mummy” the One and Only commented.

But what is it?

An online dictionary offers:

  • To spend time ineffectual activity (verb)
  • A great deal of ineffectual activity (noun)

The origin is possibly to do with a descriptive word for the wind meaning to blow in puffs.

In my life it is synonymous with ‘bother’ and comes out at times when things go wrong. It incorporates “I haven’t got time for this right now” and “How can I be that stupid?”

Recently I have been trying to add a ‘thank you’ on to the end of my faffs.

“Oh faff, but thank you!”

It may not be what I intended, but if we believe in God’s sovereignty, if we believe that God’s best for us is to make us more like Jesus, if we believe that nothing interrupts God’s purposes…if we believe Romans 8:28 then it is what he intended and it is good.

I don’t mean to belittle disaster, but to challenge my felt need for things to go smoothly. To challenge my expectation that things won’t spill, or break, or get lost, or go wrong.

What a ridiculous expectation – you would think 40 years on this planet would be enough to shatter that one!

And in doing so to challenge my fear of the same.

Lord, help me to rejoice in you always! Help me to see the mess that fills my days as setting off your perfection – like a diamond displayed on a black cloth. Thank you for your gracious reminders that we dwell in the shadowlands and the best is coming soon! I love you, Amen.


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