You Already Have A Prayer Life

By September 9, 2019 Blog

Guest post by Glen “I can’t pray. Where would I begin?” I understand this sentiment very well. I have thought it and felt it often. But it’s not right. The truth is I can pray, I do pray, I am praying all the time. I don’t need to start praying. In reality I can’t stop. What do I mean? Well consider these famous verses from Paul: Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with …Read More

When the ‘wrong’ words are right

By August 25, 2019 Blog

This is not the blog post I planned to write. The one I planned was short and snazzy. It had a catchy title, ‘Questions you should never ask.’ Or, even better: TEN THINGS YOU SHOULD STOP SAYING TO HURTING PEOPLE, RIGHT NOW! A neat list of questions to make you quiver. The kind that, when asked of you, make you fold yourself into tiny triangles. Missiles, like these: Don’t you think it’s time to move on from your grief? Why aren’t …Read More

10 Myths of Perfectionism

By August 15, 2019 Blog

This is one from the archives.  But it seems appropriate as September looms and I start obsessing about new pencil cases and Getting Everything Right. Perfectionism porkies: 1. It makes me into a better person. Actually, no. It makes me a real pain to be around. Grumpier. More critical.  More self-focused. And lonely (because ‘friends’ are actually competition). 2. It helps me perform. The reality – it stops me even trying. 3. I feel better knowing that I’ve done my …Read More

Don’t compare (and despair!)

By August 9, 2019 Blog

Sometimes when my mum visits, she leaves me one of her holiday magazines. ‘Home and Hearth’. ‘Ladies and Lunching’. ‘Kitchens and Catteries’. Top tips for cutting back the ivy. 101 uses for bicarbonate of soda. Beat the menopause. And features on The Woman Who Has It All. I’d like to be one of these women. They find vaccines for diseases and start their own businesses. They storm across the West End stage and speak at power lunches. I will never …Read More

That’s not my God…

By July 29, 2019 Blog

I’m reading a great devotional for busy mums.  It talks about the importance of coming before God in silence and stillness. Yes, I think.  Yes. But how? Noise is the tapestry of my days.  Toys that sing when you step on them. The hum of the washing machine; car horns honking; the chatter and clatter of dishes and children. No breaks and no off switch. No time for anything else. That’s not quite true. It is possible to carve out …Read More

The Good Life

By July 18, 2019 Blog

A good prayer is not ‘Dear God, thank you that I’m so good and everything is perfect’, (including my grammar).  A good prayer can be inarticulate and halting; a torrent of tears and grief and anger; a slow grasping towards the light, from a very dark place. Good faith is not always about having a sense of God’s presence; or peace in the face of challenges and fears. Good faith is talking through your doubts with close Christian friends, speaking …Read More

Chasing my shadow

By July 4, 2019 Blog

It’s the big question of this (and maybe every) age. Who am I, really?  Is there a core essence, a slice of me-ness that marks me out from everyone else? If so, am I born with it; or is it something I have to seek out and discover? What I if don’t like what’s there? Can I learn to be something different? One question leads to another and another after that. When will it happen, this self-discovery? When I meet …Read More

Tantrum training

By June 27, 2019 Blog

The first time Ruby’s brother had a tantrum, she looked aghast and covered her ears. ‘Mum,’ she shouted,  I DON’T LIKE THAT NOISE.  STOP IT!  STOP IT!’ I knew exactly how she felt. When a toddler or baby cries, there’s something in you that starts flashing.  High alert, sirens wailing – a burst of panic that spreads across your body. Half of you wants to run away and the other half wants to join in the screaming. Neither works. Here’s what …Read More

Blessed are the mentally ill because…

By June 20, 2019 Blog

…in our weakness we can learn certain strengths: humility: suddenly, the plug is pulled.  You’re not who you thought you were; and it hurts.  You can’t think yourself out of it or get your act together. But with it, a savage freedom; a letting go – because it’s been taken from you. And in your emptiness, a new understanding of grace. God does it all – He always did, but now you see it. dependence: to survive, you must learn …Read More

Treasures of darkness

By June 13, 2019 Blog

Everything I’m reading at the moment seems to point to the necessity of Christian suffering.  It’s not a message I’ve been seeking. In fact, I keep trying to post it back. I turn the pages of the bible.  I put on a different song.  I pray, ‘Ok God – but not for me. Not now and frankly, not ever.’ This week I even picked out a book entitled ‘Joy’ as an antidote. (It turned out to be about the joy that comes …Read More