Walking with the worried

By March 21, 2017 Blog

Over the years I’ve struggled with anxiety. At its worst, it’s paralysing, leaving me unable to think or move or breathe. Simple tasks feel fraught with danger and overwhelming significance.  Little tasks, like chores feel overwhelming. Ask me what’s wrong and I can’t explain. There’s a list of trivialities, but nothing to explain the sense that everything is breaking. So how can I help myself? And how can I (and others like me), be helped? Take me seriously: but not my fears. Anxiety is like a whirlpool …Read More

We will miss you

By March 13, 2017 Blog

We were drowning; and no-one knew what to do. The doctor said he couldn’t help. A pastor with more than 20 years of experience said ‘this is too much.’ We felt like giving up; like we’d gone beyond hope.  But where the experts failed; ordinary Christians stood in the gaps. Folks like Mike and Heather Ovey; our tutor and his wife. Week after week they invited us into their home and listened to us and prayed with us and made us feel …Read More

Project Justify-Me

By March 10, 2017 Blog

Guest post from Glen… Tuesday night, 11:30pm. After 5 hours at A&E, Emma and I were putting a screaming toddler to bed. The doorbell went. “Who could that be?” asked Emma. Somehow I knew. Clarity pierced through the cloud of tiredness, set-upon-ness, and noble sufferer-ness that I’d been nurturing all evening. Suddenly I realised I was guilty – of a crime that, without the doorbell, I’d have blithely ignored. But with the bell came instant conviction. And rest. You see, …Read More

What Lent means to me

By March 2, 2017 Blog

I have mixed feelings about Lent. Part of me wants to throw myself into it with super-human resolve. Part of me fears I’ll do exactly this. I have a long history of eating disorders, depression and perfectionism.  Ask me to fast for 40 days and I’ll do forty-one. Tell me to do 40 press-ups and I’ll do 400. I’m all about a certain kind of ‘self-restraint.’ But it’s nearly killed me. You’ll tell me, rightly, that this is not what …Read More

Gritty Love

By February 22, 2017 Blog

Real love is not in the grand gestures, the dazzling diamond or the flourish of flowers. It’s not a stunning white dress a first dance or a heart carved into wood. Real love is not wet-eyed sentiment; a puppy or a perfect child. It’s messy and painful; not scented or neat. Real love is wiping up Weetabix and changing dirty sheets. It’s a series of tiny moments a hand on the shoulder serving, even when you’re tired It’s a smile – but also a …Read More

Forked Tongue

By February 15, 2017 Blog

Satan whispers, “Don’t worry about that sin, that pattern, that temptation. It’s no big deal.’ Then when you fall for it, he shouts, “You’ve blown it! What a wretch you are! God won’t want to hear from you now, not for another fortnight at least. Not till you’ve made it all better.” But you can’t make it better. And the whispers start again. … ‘Stuck eh? Well what do you expect? Sin is in your genes – unavoidable, no matter how …Read More

Our Champion

By February 7, 2017 Blog

My alarm rings and I’m up like a shot.  Well, a slow shot.  I’m excited about the day ahead and the challenges that God has in store.  I’m confident of His goodness, open to His leading and flexible enough to roll with whatever He has planned. It’s gonna be a glorious day. … The alarm really goes off and this time I’m not dreaming. I crawl out of bed, croaking for caffeine.  I’m daunted by the day ahead and all …Read More

Not for Nothing

By January 30, 2017 Blog

I want you to know that I see you. Not just the bright smile you share with strangers. Not just the bent shoulders, picking up toys.   Not just the coper, who gets it all done. Not just the shiny bits; the triumphs and successes. Not just the qualifications or the clipboard or desk.   I see when you stumble I see when you sleep I see when you fall and I see when you weep.   I see it all.  And I see all of …Read More

Keep Knocking

By January 25, 2017 Blog

Ever feel like you’re shouting into the darkness? You’re praying, really praying.  You have faith. You’re eaten up with wanting and with waiting. Lord, save my family. Lord, heal my friend. Give me victory over this struggle. Stop my loved one drinking. Lift my depression. Take me out of this situation.   For weeks and months and years.  Please Lord, help.  Please Lord, hear. You pray and you pray and you pray.  But the situation doesn’t change. The sickness doesn’t heal.  And the …Read More

This Lord

By January 17, 2017 Blog

When life is overwhelming, instead of running to Jesus, I sometimes battle on, alone.   I know what the Bible says…but what I need is busyness.  I’m building a wall against chaos, and every task is another brick. What are you facing at the moment?  What is it that feels “too much?” A stressful job – or no job.  Screaming children – or no children.   Your health.  Your bank balance.  YOU.  Too tired to keep going; too weak to stop. As Christians, if we feel overwhelmed, …Read More