Slinkers and Strollers

By September 18, 2014 Blog

In a survey of Christian students, 97% reckoned Jesus was an extrovert*. Now, given that He’s the model of real and perfect humanity, what do we make of this? Blessed are the sociable? Thou shalt Mingle More? I’m not convinced. On the one hand, Jesus was utterly outgoing – ministering long after the rest of us would have jumped into our pjs and locked the doors. But so often we define extroversion and introversion in terms of what works for us:  for example: do people invigorate you?  Or do they sap …Read More

In His Words

By September 17, 2014 Blog

When it comes to your identity, you can’t rely on other people and you can’t rely on yourself. I was reminded of this a few days ago when Glen and I bumped into some old friends. It’s the first time they’ve seen me since I’ve been pregnant, and the conversation went like this: ‘Aaaaah – there she is! Show me your tummy!’ Bump was duly squeezed - which would be fine, were I not a sociopath who require 2 meters of personal space. As it was, I smiled …Read More

Dealing With Difficult People

By September 16, 2014 Blog
Businesswoman lifting heavy elephant

Recently I was chatting with a friend about Difficult People. Perhaps you know the type: – Likes things done in a specific way (theirs). – Tends to see the challenges in every situation. Timid and suspicious of hope. – Roots their identity in the opinions of others. Tries a little too hard. – Introverted. Occasionally anti-social. – Wants help but won’t put it into practice. – Needy, but also proud. – Denies their weakness – or uses it like a stick …Read More

Remembering Joy

By September 15, 2014 Blog

Some days you have to fight for joy.  Here’s some things that help: – the psalms: people crying out to God with the full range of human emotion.  Lost a loved one?  Lonely? Angry with God? Confused?  Despairing?  Full of guilt? Thankful? Overwhelmed?  Whatever you’re experiencing; it’s here.  No edits and no air-brushing; just those who have walked this path before us and are taking it to God. – praying for others. When I bring loved ones before the Lord, it …Read More

What We’ve Got, Not What We’ve Not

By September 14, 2014 Blog

One of our friends works in a spinal injuries unit. She was talking about the challenges of caring for those who’ve experienced such trauma: and said something very striking. Out of  all of those on the ward, she said, it’s often the patients with the worst injuries who are most joyful and most hopeful. Shocked, we asked why and she said: ‘it’s obvious, really. They’ve come closest to death: and they’re just grateful to be alive.’ Each person has a different story and a different response to …Read More

Dad Wisdom

By September 11, 2014 Blog
frog and toad

After yesterday’s post, (things I’d like my child to know), I asked Glen what he would add.  Here’s his list;   You’re loved before you do anything – that’s why we baptised you when all you could do was lie there and receive it. You belong to Jesus before you belong to us – that’s why we baptised you, putting God’s name on you above every other name. You belong to church before you belong to any other earthly body – …Read More

20 lessons

By September 10, 2014 Blog

The things I want to teach my child: 1. Jesus loves you. He’ll never leave you. He says you are precious and lovely and He even sings over you. He’s got great plans for you and He is trustworthy and  more beautiful than anything else in the world. 2. It’s good to take and risks. It’s good to climb trees and rip your clothes and stand up for things other people don’t agree with.  I’m proud of you for trying: that’s what really counts. …Read More

The Limits of Blogging

By September 9, 2014 Blog
blog limits

One of the things I love most about blogging, is being part of an online community. It’s given me the chance to talk with an incredible group of people; to share life and develop my thinking in ways that I’d never have predicted.  There have been many times when I’ve relied on the wisdom and prayers of people I’ve never met; and I thank God for you and your encouragement and support. Plus, it’s not just me. For those who are sick or housebound, …Read More

Fixer Versus Friend

By September 8, 2014 Blog

When it comes to friendship, I have one rule for others and another for me. It seems to me that the way I give myself to others, is by holding myself back. Providing solutions instead of silence, keeping it together and most of all, Not Being A Burden. What blesses people is not Messy Emma (in all her brokenness). It’s Shiny Emma: the Helper with her box of solutions. If I lean on others, I’m not being a friend. They want answers: not mess …Read More

Getting Through

By September 7, 2014 Blog

Most Christians have wobbles of faith. But most Christians think other Christians don’t. For one thing, it’s not something we tend to ask about: (though funnily enough I do ask about your dog /family /house /job/ plumbing).  It feels personal – like enquiring about someone’s toilet habits.   If I ask about your relationship with Jesus; you might ask about mine.  And I’m not sure we want to go there.  Plus, you might think I’m weird, just for bringing it up.  So we have an unspoken agreement …Read More