True story

By March 12, 2019 Blog

One from the archives….   God’s time-frame is not ours. And sometimes, He answers our prayers, a little later than we expect. When I was nine or ten, I entered a competition that our primary school was running with Belfast zoo. To enter, you had to write a poem about the new baby kangaroos. The winners would then get to visit them with the class, and – get this – give them kangaroo names. I felt sick just thinking about it. So, I got to work crafting the …Read More

The body-mind match: guest post

By February 25, 2019 Blog

Thank you to the lovely Sharon, for another really helpful guest post…   When mental health problems and physical illness collide We are all increasingly aware of the mind-body connection. If we eat a piece of dark chocolate or go for a run, endorphins are released, and our mood improves. If we live on fast food for a few days or lie about on the sofa for too long, we are likely to feel low. Similarly, physical illness affects our …Read More

Don’t give up

By November 19, 2018 Blog

This morning, my daughter was building the world’s biggest rocket out of lego bricks.  It was all going brilliantly, until the very last piece.  As she placed it on top, we watched it wobble and come crashing down. There was a two second pause when I held my breath… before she let out an ear-ripping howl and vowed never to build anything else, ever, ever EVER again. My daughter moved on, with a little help from Bruno Mars. But when …Read More

When you fail

By November 5, 2018 Blog

Remember that Jesus comes for failures. He’s not shocked by this and neither does He condemn you.   If you come to Him He will forgive you and restore you and redeem even your mistakes, “But I have prayed for you, Simon, that your faith may not fail. And when you have turned back, strengthen your brothers.” (Luke 22:32). Look to Jesus.  The greater your sin, the greater the cross that carries it.  Yes, you’ve messed up – (and worse …Read More

What to do instead of freaking out

By June 21, 2018 Blog

  Acknowledge your feelings but remind them that you’re in charge. Think of them as a two year-old who needs reassurance and a bit of loving firmness. Remember, you have felt like this before; and it was all ok. If in doubt, stick to your usual plan/routine.  (The one you made before your brain was flooded with adrenalin). But Don’t try to do too much. It’s tempting to over schedule when you’re stressed, but you need downtime too. Work out …Read More

Advice to my younger self

By May 15, 2018 Blog

Dear 13 year-old me. First, the good news. There is an adult you and she’s doing ok. You will survive your exams. You live in a world without social media. In a few years, you won’t care so much about what everyone else thinks about you – but there’s some work for God to do first. You have a daughter AND a lovely husband. (NB: when the ‘love of your life’ dumps you, don’t panic. He’s not the One). You …Read More

Comfort, Courage and Counterfeits

By April 29, 2018 Blog

My daughter has just started nursery.  For a three year-old this is a very big deal, so we talked beforehand about what she could expect. A new place and new people.  New things to learn; new toys and routines. ‘Mummy and daddy won’t be there’ we said, ‘but you can take Derek.’ Derek is Ruby’s dinosaur; and where she goes, he follows.  The park and the toilet and the beach and the bus. She told Derek ‘I love you,’ long …Read More

40 reasons

By March 21, 2018 Blog

My birthday’s coming up and my daughter keeps asking, ‘how old are you?’ So I’ve taught her to say ‘one, two, three, four -ty.’ Life’s too short to do the whole count. Left to myself, I’d wail, ‘The best is over!’ But I have far too much to be thankful for.  Forty years in which I’ve known the Lord’s goodness. Forty years of being carried.  Forty years of manna and forty years of grace.  480 months, 2080 weeks, 14600 days, …Read More

Persist

By March 5, 2018 Blog

Jesus said it would be hard and that we have an enemy who wants to make us give up. So if you’re feeling discouraged, don’t be surprised. When the serpent tells you ‘it’s pointless’, fight back.  God knew that the dog would throw up and a friend would disappoint you. Lean on Him and He will give you what you need for right now. The world is broken.  Our bodies; our brains; our relationships; our bathrooms!  But the broken fridge …Read More

20 text messages for struggling friends

By September 12, 2017 Blog

Would it help to talk? I can’t pretend I can fix it, but I’d love to listen. Here’s what I love about you… You are not a burden. Can I pray for you; now or later, or read to you from the Bible or get some music that might be encouraging? Here’s a Bible verse that has helped me when I was feeling X..and this is why it helped me. Whatever you’re facing, God’s first and last words to you …Read More