The Greatest Showman

So, I am hoping you have seen the screen EPIC that is The Greatest Showman, and if you haven’t, um…what are you waiting for?? GO, like right now, I think it’s on at 8.30!!

I am probably not the first to say but this film has a banging (hope that word isn’t too cringe?) soundtrack, oh my goodness it is powerful!

I also doubt that I am the first to say the track This is me is an ANTHEM!!

Just have a read of these words…

I am not a stranger to the dark

Hide away, they say

‘Cause we don’t want your broken parts

I’ve learned to be ashamed of all my scars

Run away, they say

No one’ll love you as you are

But I won’t let them break me down to dust

I know that there’s a place for us

For we are glorious

When the sharpest words wanna cut me down

I’m gonna send a flood, gonna drown them out

I am brave, I am bruised

I am who I’m meant to be, this is me

Look out ’cause here I come

And I’m marching on to the beat I drum

I’m not scared to be seen

I make no apologies, this is me

Another round of bullets hits my skin

Well, fire away ’cause today, I won’t let the shame sink in

We are bursting through the barricades

And reaching for the sun

(We are warriors)

Yeah, that’s what we’ve become

Um..WOW! Like, mega wow!

Those words surely don’t just resonate with me but they must resonate with every single person who has EVER been told that they don’t matter, that they are insignificant, that they have no worth, that they are too damaged, or too broken. Isn’t that all of us? At some point I’m sure it has been.

Because we all have those things that we hide away in the dark, the parts of us we are ashamed to bring into the light. But the overriding message of this film (for me at least) is that we should run into the light with our scars and bruises and they should be celebrated, because truly it is those things that make us beautiful!

I love that the song acknowledges that yes, the character is brave but she is also bruised, and while the words may be fired at her she won’t allow the shame of them to sink in or to take root! She recognised that she brings her bravery along but she is also marked by the scars and bruises that life has given her along the way, DESPITE this she is triumphant, it’s not one without the other, it is all things together. She may as well sing from the rooftops for all to hear, that these are the very things that make up who she is.

The bruises, the scars, the wounds.

ALL the baggage that she carries from her past, the humiliation and the repulsion she has faced. They don’t have to be the thing that stops her but they can be the driving force in her victory.

She will no longer hide in the shadows but that she will ‘burst through the barricades’, that is some deep inner strength. And strength like that can only come from knowing that someone will fight for you.

For her that is the rest of the ‘curiosities’ but for us it is God the Father. He is our great defender, protector and provider.

When people bruise us or we are battered by life God is there, right by our side. He is there when we feel that we just can’t keep going, when we are to tired to keep pushing on, he is the thing that we can hold onto, he is our anchor, our rod and our strength.

I know I have said this before but I think it is worth saying again, how often do we let our past define who we get to be today an tomorrow? We all have hurts and wounds we carry, words that have been spoken over us that have taken root, parts of us we are ashamed of, BUT, if we will let him, those are the things that God can work with! Don’t let the things you hide in the darkness remain there, that is where the enemy gets the victory over us. He tells us that if we dare to bring them to the light that people will reject us, the will disown us and even worse, (sharp intake of breath!)

they will judge us!!!

But here is the winning line or the grand finale if you will(sticking with the film theme here!) if we can dare to bring those things into the light then they can have great power and can give so much glory and honour to God. The testimony of our own brokenness and restoration through God love, grace and mercy is the thing that will allow us to come alongside others and might very well just be the key in unlocking their isolation and darkness and allow them to walk or run into freedom.

What greater thing can there be that that?

Look out ’cause here WE come!

Advertisements

I’m actually meant to read my Bible??

I know what your probably thinking, she grew up in a Christian home, went to Church every week, she’s a Vicar’s wife, she must have lost count of the number of times she’s read the Bible.

Wanna know the truth??

I don’t think I’ve ever read the whole Bible…like EVER!!

I’m probably quite like you in that I have good intentions

I’ll read it from start to finish

(That didn’t last long)

I’ll read this novelised version

(That didn’t last long)

I’ll get fancy detailed Bible notes with extra reading

(That didn’t last long)

Oo I know, I’ll bullet journal my way through the Bible

(That didn’t last long)

I always manage to get so far with reading the Bible and then something’s happens, I miss a day, then two days, then a week and then…yeah, I’ve already given up!

So when I heard from IBRA (International Bible Reading Association) about their Fresh from the Word campaign I figured I’d join in, what do I have to lose? I might actually read some more of my Bible!

All they asked of me was to use their Bible reading notes for a week and then blog about it, so here I am, I week later tapping away!

And I like these notes, you know why? Because they are short, to the point and simple. A short Bible passage followed by a thought about the passage followed by a prayer and then a further thought or a challenge. And some of them have been a real challenge!

For me God has highlighted the fact that I judge others all too quickly

Oo, did you see that? I’m no way near as bad as they are, did you see what they did?!

‘We call people monsters if they commit horribly violent crimes…and the people who want to lynch them or who demand their execution’

Um…ouch! How many times do we put ourselves as judge in the place of God? I do it all the time, I read some horrendous news piece and demand someone be punished. These notes have reminded me again that I have my part to play and God has him. Just like passages from this first week have included people’s ‘Here I am send me’.

I have been reminded that without this simple statement, here I am, send me, we could be leaving ‘potential heroes to stay in isolation and darkness’.

Now I’ll admit there have been a couple of days where I have sped through the reading but there have also been days when I have taken my time with them, to really place myself into the setting, to almost see these people around me, to watch Samuel as he is called by God. And when you do that, you notice the detail. Samuel was sleeping in the temple of the Lord, where the ark of God was. Hello?? That is one holy place to be laying your head down!

And I have been challenged too. So many times if I have been given a Biblical word from someone I have been quick to brush it off

Oh that’s nice but really that was meant for so and so way back when…

When truthfully, and this hit me hard,

‘Jesus is simply taking the whole of God’s message in scripture seriously, responsibly – and personally. Jesus never forgets it applies to himself: the call to trust, to suffer, to serve, to resist temptation and to confront fear, but above all else to listen and to say yes to God. It’s all about him. And therefore it’s all about us.’

Let me say that again

It’s all about him. And therefore it’s all about us!

‘The invitation is personal. It’s there in writing. And it’s serious.’

I don’t get to just brush Biblical truth off my shoulder like it’s a piece of fluff.

These notes have also reminded me that I don’t have to have it all sorted and together to be used by God. Because we think that don’t we.

If only I get get this sorted out (my daily Bible reading) then I will be a “better Christian” and then God will use me

It’s not like that, that is one big fat lie!! God will use us as we are, however we are, wherever we are, as long as we are willing! We just have to stop believing that the things we hide about ourselves are the things that stop God using us. God will use me despite my low self esteem and my constant comparison with others. He will use you despite your depression, addictions, perfectionism, striving. Whatever it may be for you, God still wants to use you. We (the Church) are God’s great plan to bring humanity back to him, he hasn’t got a plan B! So either we accept the truth written in the Bible and raise our hand

Here I am send me

Or we say

Well God, I’d love to help you out, just let me sort x, y and z and then I’m all yours. By the way, x, y and z will probably take my whole life time so I wouldn’t hang around if I were you!

For me, this week of daily Bible readings (which I hope to continue) has been about reminding myself of my simple YES to God. A yes as a step of faith, a yes to trust him and for him to guide me.

One of my biggest yeses this past year has been this blog. To speak out and to not know where the words will fall but to speak them out. And there have been times these works have come from deeply personal places, from pain and doubt and that is costly but it is more costly not to!

My part = speak and obey, God’s part = all the rest!

So, what are my tips for actually reading your Bible?

  • Find notes you get on with – Fresh from the Word has been great for me
  • Don’t put pressure on yourself, so what if you miss a day (or two) just pick it back up, don’t bother trying to catch up what you’ve missed – you never will!
  • Slow down, these notes only had a few verses to read so take your time, let the words sink in
  • Find a time that works for you, but do try to plan it in, if you don’t you just won’t do it, it’s a bit like exercise!

So get into your Bible this year, maybe for the first time and meet with God on the pages!

2018…not the greatest start to the year

So 2018 didn’t exactly get off to the greatest of beginnings.

Don’t get me wrong, we had a great New Year’s Eve spent with a fab family from Church. We played silly games, ate great food, drank and watched the fireworks. New Year’s Day started great, we had 30 people from Church round for bacon butties (a great way to start the year I must say!).

And then…

About 4.30 I go out to call the dog in from the garden. She is our great escape artist and loves to go into our neighbours garden so I’m out there for a while before she comes back.

I come back in (with dog in toe) to see I have had 6 missed calls from my sister. Now my family are not massive callers, we are a family of texters. So I of course text her back.

hey there, was out looking for the dog, what can I do for you?

She rings straight back, I pick up.

Um…there no easy way to say this but mum has had a heart attack.

…silence…brain tries to process what she has just said…tears…

I’m sorry, what? Mum has had a heart attack? Our mum? A heart attack??

Yes, she’s had a heart attack and is on her way to hospital

…silence…tears…brain struggling to process…I can’t breath properly…

Sorry, can you say that again? Our mum has had a heart attack and is on her way to hospital?

Yes, they took her to Cheltenham hospital and she’s been transferred from there straight to Bristol

…struggling to breath…tears…thoughts everywhere…

Is she ok? Is dad ok? Why has this happened? Is she going to have another one? Is she going to die? Do I need to come up right now? Will I get there in time? WHAT IS HAPPENING???!!

Dad is with her, don’t come up right now, I will keep you updated, breath and tell Carl

I put the phone down and sit in stunned silence trying to get hold of my thoughts and my breathing.

I’m in shock!

I have another beautiful quote from my current book (if you haven’t read My Grandmother seems her regards and apologises by Fredrik Backman then do!)

Only one person collapses with a heart attack…but two hearts are broken, and the house is never quite the same again

My mum had a heart attack, but there is also my dad, my sister and two brothers and her 8 grandchildren. That is a lot of hearts hurting.

And in all of that I have lost my trust in God and placed it in myself and I didn’t even notice it happen.

God, I should be there…I need to do this or that…I’m not there…I need to speak to her…I need to tell her this…

And God whispered back

I’m there.

Yes God, but I’m not and I should be.

I know Lindsay, but I’m there, I’m with her, I’m with them.

Yes, but, what if…

I know, I know! But I am with her, I am with her!

How quickly does that happen to us?

Something unexpected happens and we get knocked sideways, we completely lose our footing and stumble. We retreat from those who love us and want to support us, we shut down emotionally as a way of self protection and we go it alone!

In that moment I did that to Carl and to God. I barricaded myself in, protected myself from being vulnerable and they both stood outside of my impenetrable fortress and gently knocked.

Please let us in, let us be with you in this, let us sit with you

But it’s so hard isn’t it, to admit that we are hurting and to reach out and accept love from others, especially God.

But like any parent, God sees our pain and suffering and he just wants to be with us in it. That’s not to say that by letting God in all our pain will magic away (he’s not a magician!!) but he will stay with us in the midst of the mess, and he will hold us. While we thrash about and scream, he holds us.

In that phone call my hand slipped from God’s pretty quickly, I relied on myself rather than trusting that whatever the outcome may have been that he was still with me, with my mum and my dad and my siblings and our children. He had us all right in the palm of his hands.

And like any loving parent God has been gentle with me, he has t pointed out my mistakes but as I have looked back at the past week he has shown me that in it all he was there. When I wasn’t there he was. And now I’m not there he is still there. And he is with me too, as the reality sinks in he is still walking me through it.

What a good Father we have.

Don’t be foolish…

Nowhere does it say that just because we follow Christ that somehow we get an easy ride in life.

Sorry to disappoint you!

I will admit that what I know about God, life, the universe and even myself is far outweighed by what God knows about all of it (even the me part). I’d like to put it around 1% but I think God may chuckle at that (if he does chuckle…just thinking about that for a moment) and he may put it somewhere closer to 0.0000000000000000000000000000000001% of what he knows – and even that is probably a stretch!

There are so many things I just plain don’t understand, and here’s the kicker I’M NOT MEANT TO!! Doesn’t that just stink? We’re not meant to have all the answers and to have it all figured out. So why do we try to so hard?

I read this beautiful scene in my book last night

I mean, you know, do you believe in God? asks Elsa.

Sometimes it’s hard to believe in God, answers the woman.

Because you wonder why God didn’t stop the tsunami?

Because I wonder why there are tsunamis at all.

There is so much pain and suffering in the world and I can’t answer the ‘why’.

Why is there depression, sickness, violence, terrorism, poverty, family breakdown, organ failure, dementia, children starving and dying, divorce, abuse, cancer?

Why is it that Adam and Eve screwed up and the whole of humanity suffers because of that one choice? I don’t know!!

There is a picture, in the chasm of the inter web somewhere (I can’t find it) of God standing in front of a man who has his back to God. God is catching all these things that are being thrown at the man but a few get past and one hits the man. He turns to God in anger and is all like “what the heck God, that hit me” and God is like “that did but look at all the stuff I stopped from hitting you”. I used to really like this image but on my run in the rain this morning I realised this isn’t God at all, because for something to hit us like that would imply he has taken his eye off the ball for a moment or been distracted or couldn’t physically catch one more thing and I doubt that a God who doesn’t even miss the fall of a leaf would be capable of that.

We have Premier Praise one in our house all the time and this morning I heard Matt Redman singing

Whatever may pass and whatever lies before me, let me be singing when the evening comes

But that’s not always true of us now is it?It’s easy to sing when life is going well but how quickly do we turn on God instead of too him when things take a turn for the worse, when suffering come.Because like I said, we are never promised an easy ride in life. That’s not the goal here. The aim isn’t to get to Heaven with the least scratches and scrapes in life “phew that life on earth wasn’t so bad, I don’t know what people were moaning about” the aim is to trust God, that even in the mess and pain of this lifetime that there will be a day of restoration, when all of those things will come to and end, that we will be healed and truly made whole.In the past, when pain and suffering have come I’ve pointed the finger of blame and accusation at God. But I am not the judge here, I am not God and I don’t have to have all the answers. God is God and I have to remember that. I have my part to play in life and God has his part (and I’d rather not have that responsibility so I’ll leave that job to him). All God asks of me, ALL HE ASKS!, is for me to trust him, whatever I’m faced with, whatever storm or trial may come.My question to me and to you is, Do we?

A face full of ice cream and no regrets

Recently I have felt more in control of myself. Less swayed by the actions of others. More steady.

Until last night…

Last night I lost it with one of our children. She is going through a stage of really testing the boundaries at bedtime, there is shouting, stamping, slamming, sobbing, spite filled words, I can’t think of another word starting with S so there is also throwing.

And I was in a better place to deal with it, a few months ago I wasn’t and I would shout back, make demands of her and throw her toys on the floor (as she did to her siblings). Yes I realise it wasn’t the best method but we had tried so many other things we’d run out of ideas so shouting seemed like a good idea!

But the past few weeks I had managed to remain calm, as she swung from shouting to screaming I stayed steady, as she went from screaming to throwing I stayed consistent, from throwing to stamping I gave consequences I actually followed through on. I stayed as the parent she needed me to be.

But last night I was tired and she was tired and when it kicked off (during the Strictly final I might add) I lost the plot pretty quickly. She was, shouting and kicking, fighting with the door and the light, while her siblings were trying to get ready for bed. And I steamrollered in full guns blazing, how I thought that would help I don’t know but hey, that’s what I did!

She was left in a room with no toys, no sibling she shares a room with (she’d thrown a torch at her) no lightbulb in her light, and I was left seething outside the door.

At some point I did realise things might not have gone as I would have liked and I did take a breather and then go in to speak to her, much more calmly, but I think the damage was done by them. Carl came in to speak to her too so I stepped out and went straight to find the galaxy chocolate and the caramel ice cream to hide my regret in.

And it works doesn’t it, for that moment at least. I stop thinking about the crappy job I did of parenting and can soothe my hurting heart with food.

Until the last mouthful…

That last mouthful is like the sun coming up on a new day

As the sun slowly rises it highlights the darkness below it, almost pointing out how much darkness there is lurking beneath.

And that is what was left after that last mouthful, darkness, shame, guilt and regret. Not only had I failed my child in being the person to remain steady and constant but I’d also failed myself, food had consumed me YET AGAIN! I had believed its lies that it would comfort and heal my wounds. But it cannot do that can it!

Because in turning to food to get my needs met I am not turning to God for them to be met. Time and again I am trying in my own strength and not His and IT FAILS EVERY TIME!

And I say things will be different next time, that I will be calmer, better, but I don’t know whether they will be, I know I need to talk to God more than I do especially in the moments when food is calling, but it’s not easy is it. In moments of weakness to choose another path to take when there is such an easy well worn path we could take right in front of us with the gate already open to welcome us in.

But it is a choice isn’t it. A choice to say I am worth more that this, I deserve better than this. Because I am loved by God, even when I don’t feel very lovely or worthy He still loves, accepts and welcomes me in. As He does to you.

Christmas, the time of year to indulge!

So I love Christmas. I mean, I really LOVE Christmas!

The decorations, the tree, the lights. I love Christmas socks and I LOVE a Christmas jumper (check out my instagram) I love Christmas movies (The Muppets and National Lampoons being right up there) I love carols and nativities, and I love all of the food!

Now if you’ve read any of my earlier posts you will know that I don’t have the best relationship with food.

More of a LOVE HATE kind of relationship.

Food has been there when I’m tired as a ‘pick me up’, it’s there when I’m bored/lonely/sad, it’s there at a certain time of the month and there when I’m feeling unsteady or unsettled. It is also there when life is going well, as a reward, a pat on the back, a ‘well done me’. I think you get the picture, whatever is going on in my life, food is always not far behind!

This relationship led me to a very unhealthy place where I both hated food and kept returning to it in the hope it would bring the comfort it always had, right up until that last mouthful, once that is gone those feelings of self loathing and disgust soon follow.

Then Christmas comes along, with food EVERYWHERE you turn.

And as someone who really struggles with self control around food I find this time of year more difficult. Even if I plan not to buy trolleys full of mince pies and tubs of chocolate I can’t avoid them. You go to a party and your surrounded or guests come to your home and they bring a small gift. And that’s it, once there in front of me I find it very difficult to stop the temptation and promising myself I will ‘only have the one’ is a promise I know I can’t keep.

And again the whispering creeps in. Now I haven’t brought over the counter laxatives for almost 6 years but they are still a huge temptation for me.

Eat the food and use the laxatives, just for a short time, you can start again in the New Year

6 years and it’s still a massive temptation for me and often it feels like a sign of weakness that it still has this hold on me.

I used to think that nothing tastes as good as skinny feels it was almost like a mantra, I’d repeat it to myself over and over and food became about what was worth the calories and very little was!

Yet God reminded me the other day that sometimes you have to look back, look back at where you have come from because often we forget where we have come from and instead look only at how far we still have to go. It has been 6 years since I brought laxatives, 6 years!! That’s around 2190 days since I have used laxatives to lose weight, that’s a big step forward. Its 6 years since I stopped doing 3+ hours of exercise a day, that’s a big step forward. It’s 6 years since I stop being deceitful with Carl about what I was doing to my health, that’s a big step forward. It’s 6 years since I reached out for some help and admitted that I had problems with my mental health, that’s a big step forward.

And it’s good to remind myself of the person I was then to the person I am now. I am much more honest and open about my struggles, I hope you’d agree. Because what is the point of struggling through something if you can’t be a support to someone facing their own struggles! God gets no glory there.

The other day I read something that finally shut up the nothing tastes as good as skinny feels, it said nothing tastes as good as peace feels. It reminded me that I still need to give my food struggles to God and that He doesn’t get angry with me for still struggling with it. He receives my ongoing struggle with love, compassion, patience and grace. And when I receive those things from Him I am filled with His peace.

So yes I still struggle with food and while I love everything about Christmas I do still have to be watchful for the whispers that tell me just to plant my face in the Christmas cake.

Food may not be the area that repeatedly tries to pull you back in, but whatever it is for you I pray the God would remind you of how far you have come and that He is walking you through it!

Ever enough?

I started blogging just over year ago. My husband thought it would be a good way for me to process the journey I have been on. And it has been…

And yet…

I still have the negative talk going on in my head.

I have nothing of use to say, other people are so much more eloquent, my story is of no help, no one cares what you write or say…

It’s not just in the context of blogging that I become my worst critic, it’s every area of my life.

Carl and I have just been on a marriage retreat for the weekend and as we arrived so the negative dialogue began.

All these people are so much more interesting than you are, they have so much knowledge and wisdom, they are funnier/ more relaxed, more at ease, better at conversation, not boring…

And I don’t think I’m the only person to do this, at least I hope I’m not. I think there are many of us that put ourselves down when we compare ourselves to others. And that’s the root isn’t it, comparison. I’m pretty sure comparison should be a illegal or something, it’s not life giving or beneficial it just seems to destroy everything in its path.

And again it’s an area the devil knows is a weakness for me so it’s an easy target for him isn’t it. In fact he hardly needs to do or say anything these days because I’m so good at down by it to myself.

But why? Why do I and many others always put ourselves into last position, the bottom of the pile?

For me I have always struggled with drawing attention to myself, seeing it as prideful or boastful when really I should allow myself to receive praise and continue moving forward. Because if I have spoken in church or written a blog post it is because God has called me to do it and that should be something to celebrate not play down as if I’m ashamed of it.

God has given me gifts, whether I like them or not (and public speaking is right out of my comfort zone) He has walked me through seasons in life which need to be spoken about and rather than saying to myself

Please God not me, someone else would do it better

I need to instead say

Why not me?

Because if He calls me then it’s because He’s given me and me alone something to say.

And I need to remind myself that God has made me to be me and not to be a copy of someone else. So, less negative self talk and playing myself down or worse not even trying but actually trusting God that He has put in me all that I need. As He has in you!

Slow down

I am often in such a hurry, get this done and then move on to the next thing. Quicker quicker, faster faster.

Why are we always in such a rush?

This morning I’m posting half way round my dog walk. Yup, I’m that person in the woods on their phone!

But I noticed something, I was walking at a pretty speedy pace, unconsciously rushing to get the walk done and get back home, there’s homework to do, washing of uniforms, beds to make, dentist appointments and on and on.

And I realised I was missing the beauty of where I was. In my speedy pace I had seen the beautiful carpet of leaves on my path and the trees in their changing colours but other than that my head was already into the next thing.

How many of us do that everyday? So  focused on what is next that we don’t really see what is right in front on us?

So for a moment I stopped, dead still, and just looked at my surroundings and I listened, I properly listened. How often are we so focused on the next that we just don’t see and hear what’s right before us? And I could hear so much, the beautiful bird song of so many birds, the squirrels in the trees and the tapping and creaking of the trees, the light through the leaves. 


It was and is beautiful but in my hast I would have missed in, not heard it or enjoyed it, it would have been lost to me.

So my challenge to myself and to you is to just slow down, ever so slightly, and see what is right before you, what is God whispering so gently that in our rush we might just miss it and not enjoy what he has for us.

I don’t trust God with our finances

There I said it, I don’t trust God with our finances. 

There are a lot of other areas of my life I also probably don’t trust God with but finances is the area He is high lighting today.

I don’t trust in God’s provision for my family – it’s a bit uncomfortable when you finally realise what God has been gently trying to point out isn’t it!

Today was a bit of a lightbulb 💡 day for me. For a while now I have been feeling like I should get a job.

Notice I said should!

We have 4 kids and that was totally our choice and Carl works for the Church of England (his/our choice/God’s call) but that means that money for us is tight and there are a lot of things we can’t afford to do which we would love to do.

And so instead of looking to God to provide for us I start thinking about should, what I should be doing.

I don’t look at the times where God has been faithful in his provision, whether that be the love of our Church family which enabled us to have a family holiday, or the love of family which allows our children to pursue activities they enjoy.

I worry that I should be doing more to financially support our family, because I think God isn’t doing a good enough/reliable enough job? Because I can do better than he can?

Today I was reminded that for this season God has called me to be at home for and with my children. So I can take them to school and pick them up, so I can help in Toby’s class, so I can take them to clubs (taxi anyone?) so I can cook their dinner and do bedtime with Carl. 

That is what God has called me to do and be, no should but just be present. To stop thinking about what I should be doing but what I AM doing. And what I am doing and am called to do is different to what you are doing and called to do.

May God bless us all richly as we follow what he has called each of us to do and may the voice that whispers should be hushed as we are obedient to God x

Treading water

Do you ever feel like life is passing by and your just treading water? Nothing bad is happening, nothing rocking the boat, life is just easy and moving along.

Life for us right now is pretty good, unless you ask Phoebe – she would tell you Olivia’s nightlight is “literally ruining her life”. 

On the whole though, the kids are happy and settled in school, they are making good friends and are flourishing. Carl has settled into his role as Vicar/Rector (whatever he is) life has settled. And instead of always living thinking about what will happen next; Carl’s job…college…curacy…incumbency, we now just get to live and be fully here and not thinking about what is coming next. 

Now don’t get me wrong, that all feels good and it’s nice to feel we’re putting down some roots which will last longer than 3 years but I’ve realised I spend most of my life living in the expectation, the excitement/anxiety of the what’s next. So now I feel like I don’t quite know what to do or what I’m doing. And if I’m honest I feel a bit lost and a bit empty and a lot inadequate. And if I’m really honest, I feel like my old masks are slipping themselves back on again, protecting me and keeping me safe.

And I wonder if after the ‘honeymoon period’ people will start to see me for how I see me and maybe they won’t like me so much.

Because now I’m listening to the old lies about myself again, that little stronghold that lets the devil in and it flipping gets me every time! “I’m not good enough, I’m boring, I’m self absorbed, I’m lazy, I’m fat & ugly, I need to do/be more” the list goes on but you get the idea of my areas of weakness.

And it’s so easy to listen to those lies and accept them as truth, and I say this from a place of currently believing them, I’m not out the other side but right in the fog searching for the truth. This isn’t my smartie pants post where I pretend to be all wise about what I’ve learnt but my cry from the pit of emptiness.

This is me reaching out to God asking him to reveal his truth and who he made me to be, not who I am as a result of x, y & z.

So that’s it, life goes along smoothly and we can sometimes slip back into relying on our own ability rather than God and then we get that reminder, sometimes gentle sometimes not, that it’s better to give the steering wheel of our lives over to God because thankfully he is a better driver and navigator than I am.