Welcoming An Adopted Child: Guest Post

By April 5, 2016 Blog

Today’s guest post is from Jane, who is married with three children. Hannah (7) and Ben (5) are her birth children and she has recently adopted Star (4) who has Down’s Syndrome. Here’s her advice on helping birth siblings welcome a new arrival… 1. Involve birth children in the adoption conversation early We first discussed adoption with our birth children approximately two years before Star arrived. In fact we talked to them before we spoke to anyone else. At that …Read More

Surviving Coffee Time

By February 21, 2016 Blog

I love church.  And I love coffee. But post-church coffee? Terrifying. It’s not the people.  Individually, they are LOVELY.  But there’s something about a group. In a small area.  Trying to talk to one another at once. Something that makes me want to stuff my fingers in my ears and lie down in a darkened room.  On an island. In space. You’re trying to connect deeply/make small talk but Billy is practising on the drums and you can’t remember that lady’s name even though you’ve …Read More

Abba and Babba

By February 9, 2016 Blog

I’m afraid my daughter takes after me. Tell her she can’t have something and straight away, she wants it. The jagged rock. The rusty tin-opener.  The kitchen cleaner. Today we’ve lurched from one potential disaster to another.   DON’T PUT YOUR FINGERS IN THE PLUG NO, THAT’S THE CAT’S ANGRY FACE GIVE THE KNIFE TO MUMMY WHAT’S THAT IN YOUR MOUTH?  SPIT IT OUT RUBY, SPIT IT OUT   Surrounded by stacking rings, spoons, story books, shape sorters, bubbles, blocks and balls, she wants …Read More

Rules of Parenting

By February 1, 2016 Blog

My parents are baby-sitting my daughter tomorrow. So I’ve left them instructions.   Rules of Parenting: 1. Don’t make her wear a hat or coat – especially if it’s cold outside.  She might catch a cold, but suffering is good and will develop her character. 2.  If she gets sick, don’t give her medicine.  She can get better if she believes she can. 3. Always give her exactly what she wants.  For example, if she wants to play near the fire, let …Read More

Help! Here’s How:

By November 25, 2015 Blog

1. Take off my label.  If I’m going to move forward, I need to know that I am more than this. I can’t yet see it.  But you can help me grow into someone that doesn’t yet exist. 2. Be real. The gospel says we’re made of the same sinful, broken, redeemed, grace-hungry stuff. Show me this is true.  Don’t pity or patronise me. Be my friend. 3. Point up, not in. I want you to save me.  I want you to …Read More

Love God

By November 2, 2015 Blog

So I’ve met this guy…and I think he’s The One!  My church friends like him and He’s good with people. We talk all the time and are never apart.  When I’m with him I get this amazing swooshy feeling in my tummy. He’s super-smart, creative, kind and has a good sense of humour, but serious too. He always cheers me up when I feel down and he’s always doing amazing stuff to prove how much he loves me. How did we meet? At home group.  His …Read More

10 Marriage Myths

By September 21, 2015 Blog

1. “I don’t think I love them any more.” *Mock gasp* Oh no! You know what this means, don’t you? …It means you should start loving them again. Because the Bible says so. I know it might feel impossible, but God’s speciality is resurrection. Even if it’s from dry bones. Falling out of love is part of marriage. In fact it’s where loving often starts.   2. “Yes but I’ve lost that loving feeling.” You too? Well, now’s a good time to find that love is …Read More

First Things First

By September 16, 2015 Blog

This morning was our women’s bible study group. I woke up with a stinking headache and a fractious baby. It was pouring with rain, Ruby was screaming, the house was a tip and my phone was flashing reminders for a deadline I’m struggling to meet. I felt like climbing back into bed and pulling the curtains.  I felt like I should chip the spilt Weetabix off the floor and get the house into order.  I felt like I needed to work whilst Ruby slept. …Read More

Silence That Speaks

By July 28, 2015 Blog

How do you ‘do’ pastoral care?  Is it something that requires training? A hospital placement? A degree in theology? A specific calling? These things can be helpful.  But I reckon much of it comes down to two things: curiosity – and compassion. 1. Curiosity: being interested in the person you’re with. Simple, eh? But not easy. At least, not for me.. Often, instead of listening,  I’ll be talking to someone and thinking about myself.  Waiting for the opportunity to wedge in …Read More

Say What You Mean (But Don’t Say It Mean)

By July 14, 2015 Blog

I just tell it like it is. (I’m rude. I don’t care enough to think about your feelings before opening my mouth) I have to be true to myself. (I’ll do what I want and stuff the consequences) It’s just the way I am. (It suits me to be like this.  I don’t want to change and therefore I “can’t.”) Can I be honest with you? (Let’s drop the pretence of being nice) With all due respect, (which is none..) …Read More