Mercy Killing

By August 31, 2012 Blog

I’m  having a bit … actually, – a lot – of trouble, with something Jesus said. “If anyone wants to follow me, he must say no to himself. He must pick up his cross every day and follow me.  If he wants to save his life, he will lose it. But if he loses his life for me, he will save it. Luke 9:23-4. Given it’s Jesus speaking,  I can’t put this down to a misunderstanding. I can’t gloss it over, (I’ve tried).  …Read More

My Testimony On Video (6 min)

By August 30, 2012 Blog

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Bum Deal or Full House?

By August 29, 2012 Blog

From a talk we gave yesterday on identity: Social situations are a bit like playing cards.  You get dealt a hand in life.  Maybe your strong suit is your looks – you can rely on them to impress others or win you an instant audience. Perhaps it’s something else: your ability on the sports field or reputation as karaoke queen. If you’re bright,  then you play the brains card.  Or perhaps you’re funny, so you throw out the joker instead. …Read More

There’s More To You Than That

By August 27, 2012 Blog

How do we resist becoming – or remaining – in the identities that others give us? The old school-friends who still see you as the ‘joker’? Impossible to have a serious conversation with them.  Slightly disappointed if you’re not cracking gags. ‘Are you okay?  You seem a bit – flat? Cheer up!’ The family members for whom you’ll always be a trouble-maker? You’ve got a proper job now, a family.  But they still treat you like you’re dirty, embarrassing.  Can’t …Read More

Pigeon Among The Cats

By August 26, 2012 Blog

Un-Be-LIEV-able. Janet, I had to write and tell you, it’s just so shocking. I daresay you’ve heard ( it was on the Beeb last night and today and in the parish we’ve talked of nothing else), but to think we were actually there. Where to begin?  So last month we were told (very hushhush) that the Bishop was having a dinner.  John’s on that committee so we get tickets to all the big events, but this one was different. This one …Read More

Is Anyone Else Lonely?

By August 23, 2012 Blog

The original title of this blog post was ‘On Loneliness’. ‘On Loneliness’  you see, is beautifully detached.  It’s an academic meditation on a problem I’ve heard about, a problem for people ‘out there’. But the hard thing about loneliness is that it’s not ‘out there’.  It’s personal. There are lots of things I feel ashamed about. Anorexia’s a big ‘un. But you know, it’s easier to talk about eating disorders, than to say ‘I’m lonely’. Both make me feel ashamed.  But …Read More

Strong Words Spoken Softly

By August 22, 2012 Blog

Sometimes loving someone means speaking hard truths.   The unsafe conversation that may cost your friendship. I’m a good person.  Surely that’s enough for God? The warning you don’t want to hear. We need to talk about X. We can’t keep acting like nothing’s wrong. The challenge you’d rather ignore. I’m worried about your drinking.  Are things ok at home?   Hard words these. And it’s tempting to go in one of two ways;   1. Run from them. Retreat …Read More

Hungry

By August 21, 2012 Blog

Early morning is  a good time for binge-eating. Two or three am:  the twilight zone, a hinterland between dream and reality. Bathed in the soft green womb-glow of the fridge, you’re half asleep but alert. Glassy-eyed but purposeful. As you unwrap and swallow, you barely taste the food.  A switch flicks and it’s automatic. Rip, eat. Rip, eat. Rip, eat. Rip, eat. Rip, eat. Comfort eating is something most of us have done at some stage.  But binge-eating is more …Read More

Helping Young People With Eating Disorders

By August 20, 2012 Blog

Every youth leader knows teenagers who have developed a complex relationship with food. But knowing how best to tackle it can be challenging. I became a Christian when I was 13. Shortly afterwards I developed anorexia. Surprising? Well, yes and no. Eating disorders (EDs) affect everyone: young and old, male and female. But they’re especially attractive to ‘good’ girls and boys. These young people won’t go off the rails in spectacular fashion – but they might break down quietly instead. …Read More

One True Voice

By August 19, 2012 Blog

Today has been spent fighting old voices.  Voices I hadn’t listened to in a while. You’re useless.  You’re ugly. You’re a fraud.  Voices I thought I’d silenced. You don’t belong in church. Voices that keep me hidden in the darkness. You’re making a fool of yourself.   Voices that tell me to lie and hide and give up and turn inwards. You’re weak and you’re rubbish and you’re not even a Christian because a real Christian wouldn’t struggle  like you. …Read More