Walls

By October 15, 2012 Blog

There’s a poem by Robert Frost called ‘Mending Walls’.  In it, the narrator asks why every spring, he and his neighbour  rebuild the stone wall dividing their farms. He says: ‘”Before I built a wall I’d ask to know / What I was walling in or walling out / And to whom I was like to give offense.” His neighbour replies “Good fences make good neighbours”. Are relational boundaries a good thing? How do we know when you set them and when to let them …Read More

Warning Signs

By October 14, 2012 Blog

What’s your ‘relapse signature?’ Like red lights flashing on the dashboard, these are the signs that something’s not right. Things like: – withdrawing from others – changes in sleep/eating/spending patterns – particular words or phrases: ‘I’m useless.  Nothing matters.  I’m in control. I can stop any time I like -‘ – setting unrealistic goals or making overambitious plans It’s tempting to ignore these. But instead of being bad news, they can actually be good. That’s because if you listen to them, they …Read More

Gospel Pants

By October 12, 2012 Blog

Dear Brother, How’s it going?  So good to have you as part of the fellowship here.  It’s a lovely group, isn’t it?   Proper believers. I expect that’s a little different to what you’ve been used to:  I’m not saying St Stefan’s was bad.  But here – well, we’re serious about our faith. Which is why I wondered if I could have a quick word. Don’t mishear me, bro – your heart’s in the right place. Bible believing, involved in evangelism, prayerful and a home group leader …Read More

Mirror, Mirror

By October 11, 2012 Blog

It’s taken as read that we know ourselves.  Other people may get it wrong, but we know who we are, right? Confused about life? Just look within. Unsure about a current relationship or  future direction?  Follow your heart. Whatever the haters say, be true to yourself…unless of course, you don’t know what that self is. This I’m afraid, is my experience.  Flesh wrapped around an empty hole.  A collection of negatives instead of a person – – ‘not funny’ – ‘not pretty’ -‘not enough’. One of the …Read More

Scar Tissue

By October 10, 2012 Blog

Sometimes we hurt ourselves and those we love.  We don’t mean to, but we do. Sometimes we recover.  Old relationships resume.  But neither we – nor they – stay the same.   Wounds can heal, but the scars remain.  They ache.  We want to go back – but we can’t. We start anew: but we build on what has been. Yesterday I visited an inpatient treatment centre for those who are critically ill with eating disorders.  I met three beautiful young women, …Read More

I’m A Christian: Get Me Outta Here

By October 8, 2012 Blog

What’s God up to when things are difficult? What happens when I pray and He doesn’t answer the way I want? In Sunday school recently, we were looking at the story of Shadrach, Meshach and Abendybobby, (ok Abednego) from Daniel 3. The king tells them that unless they worship a false god, he’s chucking them into a furnace. Here’s what they reply: “King Nebuchadnezzar, we do not need to defend ourselves before you in this matter. If we are thrown …Read More

Messed-Up Is the New Normal… Right?

By October 5, 2012 Blog

This week I’ve had the pleasure of handing over to guest blogger, Alex Tylee, who’s written a brilliant series of posts here and here. Today however, I’m afraid it’s back to porridge.  Sorry folks. But wait, – don’t go! I know my life is as exciting as a damp noodle. So I’ve upped my game. For two days only I give you: High Jinks! Drama! and.. CELEBRITIES! Well, celebrity. Come Monday I shall return to my jigsaw.  But this weekend looks a little different.  Here’s why: 1. …Read More

Walking With Gay Christian Friends:Guest Post

By October 4, 2012 Blog

 Continuing on from yesterday’s post, Alex Tylee writes: How can the church and individual Christians support those experiencing same sex attraction who are trying to live according to the Bible’s teaching against homosexual conduct? Some dos and don’ts.. DO Make a clear distinction between homosexual practice and homosexual feelings. The Bible has something to say about homosexual conduct, not orientation. Though it’s hard, I am able to do something about what I do with my body and imagination. I can’t …Read More

‘I’m A Gay Christian’: Guest Post.

By October 3, 2012 Blog

Alex has written a stonking book called ‘Walking with Gay Friends’, which I highly recommend. Tomorrow, she’ll look at how we can support those struggling with their sexuality. But for now, here’s some of her story: “There was a girl in two of my classes when I was 17 who unknowingly showed me without doubt that I was a lesbian. Though I hardly spoke to her (girls I fancy have always caused me to lose the power of speech and make me …Read More

Listen.

By October 2, 2012 Blog

“DYING” TO BE THIN ’ by Rebecca Andriani Lochaiti. 30 year old Rebecca struggled for years with anorexia. This is a summary of her story from the Greek site ‘Lifo’.  (I used Google/Bing translate, so it’s pretty crude), but you can find the original here. She writes: The first time I lost weight my periods stopped. At first I thought I was pregnant and immediately did a pregnancy test which came out negative. … I became convinced that even a shred of …Read More