Say What You Mean

By March 20, 2013 Blog

I’m about to rant about something I do all the time: violence against the English language. At university I had to confess to my tutor (a world expert in linguistics), that I had no idea what a noun was.  Turns out it’s a Naming (and in my case, Shaming) word. In my defense, I’m Northern Irish, so a.) English is a second tongue and b.) my accent precludes the use of consonants. Where I come from, power shower = Parrrrrrarrrrrrrr …Read More

Rules of Engagement

By March 19, 2013 Blog

Personal boundaries are important.  But they’re hard to get right. In theory they should be simple, like mapping terrain: Here’s where you are, here’s where I am. Here’s how far you can come and here’s how far I am willing to go. There are levels of difficulty and there are certain rules. Level 1: easy. Example: ‘hi. howareyoufinethanksyouhowstheflatdogjobcarteethmyitscoldwellgreattocatchupseeyousoon‘ (breathing and pausing optional) .  Suitable for supermarkets, coffee mornings, car-parks, school runs and most public spaces. Status: Appropriate for general public. …Read More

Food 4Thought

By March 18, 2013 Blog

Here’s the wee slot I did for 4thought: it’s airing on Sat night – prayers much appreciated. :-) Go here to view Share…

Married to the Enemy

By March 17, 2013 Blog

Who is the person who frightens you most? For me, it’s my husband. I know what you’re thinking… Glen is not scary.  He’s cuddly and overexcited. You’re  right. Yet my husband scares me more than anyone else. Why? I like being in control. Straight lines and neat edges.  Immaculate and ordered. My life, my way. Glen can visit – if he takes his shoes off and leaves the guitar in the car. This works in my head.  Or a homeware catalogue. …Read More

This Was Not The Plan

By March 15, 2013 Blog

Sometimes your words come back and bite you on the bum. ‘I will never date, let alone marry a vicar’ ‘I will never leave Northern Ireland’ ‘I will never work with children’ (four years as a Youth and Children’s worker) ‘I will not turn into my mother’ (Everything bar marrying my dad. And Glen’s not completely dissimilar…) God’s plans are not my plans.  Which, given my experience with ‘taking charge’, is just as well.  (In a cunning move I’ve taken …Read More

Love after Love

By March 14, 2013 Blog

Love after Love   The time will come when, with elation, you will greet yourself arriving at your own door, in your own mirror, and each will smile at the other’s welcome.   and say, sit here.  Eat. You will love again the stranger who was your self. Give wine.  Give bread.  Give back your heart to itself, to the stranger who has loved you   all your life, whom you have ignored for another, who knows you by heart. …Read More

The Power of Being Weak

By March 13, 2013 Blog

What makes a good church leader? My first thought is of some sort of expert, poised and capable, expertly scattering wisdom, like crumbs before pigeons. Certainly, knowledge is a good thing – but on it’s own, I’m not sure it’s enough. Like the teacher whose brains you admire because they make their subject incomprehensible… do I really want to leave a sermon thinking, ‘Man, I would never have worked that out alone?’ No – the great teacher is someone who …Read More

Recovery Aids

By March 11, 2013 Blog

Some things that have helped me in anorexia recovery; 1. Thou shalt not miss meals. (Doesn’t matter if other folks do; they probably don’t have a history of EDs and anyway, this is about you getting healthy, not minimum requirements). 2. Don’t overexercise. (If your need to exercise is interfering with daily life, it’s an issue). Plus, if you’re low weight, the more you exercise the more you need to eat to get better. That’s an extra challenge you can …Read More

We Are Family

By March 10, 2013 Blog

I suspect there are a lot of us who find Mother’s day difficult.  From the pain of broken relationships to bereavement or childlessness, it can feel like staring through a window at a warm fire when you’re locked out in the rain. So what do you do with those feelings?  To what extent do you allow them to determine how you behave? I don’t think there’s one answer.  As with most things, I veer naturally between extremes: 1. life (and …Read More

More Than A Feeling

By March 7, 2013 Blog

Which is more powerful: the facts or your feelings? Yes I know – facts are True.  But true is a boring hatchback parked neatly in my brain.Feelings are pimped-up red ferraris that power through the blood superhighways, pumping out Meatloaf and mooning the olds. Example fact: A hormone  is a chemical released by a cell, a gland, or an organ in one part of the body that sends out messages that affect cells in other parts of the organism. Cells respond to a …Read More