Monday, 21 January 2013


Do you ever have that feeling that time has stood still or even gone back?  I really struggled through last week.  My mum spent most of it in bed, too depressed to get up and live and on Friday I discovered that my niece had been back in hospital all week after another quite serious attempt on her life - she is still not even 16!

This time last year my mum had just come out of a mental health unit after a psychotic episode of depression (lasting 3 months) after my father died and my niece was in a secure mental health unit. Note the similarities!

I do hope however that I might be in a slightly better place.  I hope I have 'grown' as a person.  A wonderful thing that has been blossoming over the last year has been our church.  We started a new service in January 2012, a four o'clock service, with a more relaxed and contemporary style to the more traditional services that take place in our two churches.  My husband was asked to be on the leadership team of the service, giving him a role which he has been struggling to find during the five years we have now been a part of the parish.  Since finishing my job as the children's and youth pastor in June, I have taken a total back seat and when I have managed to get to the services have just sat and received.  God has been so good.  In November a lovely lady followed up a nudge she felt from the Lord to set up a women's group during the day time and finally I am starting to feel as though I belong somewhere.  So yes I do think I am in a better place.  There are still some bad days when my body may ache a little more than usual and the dark clouds are overwhelming.  However there are far more days when I can get on with life and live it, looking forward to seeing what good things might occur in my days.

I am reading a book about Eric Liddell at the moment, a biography by David McCasland called Pure Gold.  I totally expected it to be mostly about his running career (him of Chariots of Fire fame), however two thirds of this book is about his life - his life as a missionary before being cut down too early in life by war.  His faith is simply remarkable.  There are lots of excerpts from letters and missionary reports that he wrote.  In one he quotes a poem that he received from a friend and I wanted to share it here:

Happiness is to have enough for the day's needs with always some to spare for those who have not.
It is to possess the love of friends and to have the knowledge that all is well with them.
It is to live in peace with all men.
Happiness is to have the strength to face with courage all that the day may bring.
It is to cherish the gift of laughter, to be quick to note all that is lovely and of good report.
Happiness is to find our joy in the common things of life for so will youth abide in our hearts till the end of our days.
Thank God for the gift of happiness.

(page 207) Eric Liddell:Pure Gold by David McCasland

With these thoughts in mind I continue to count my blessings with Ann Voskamp

920. The joy and surprise of my children playing a board game NICELY together (totally unprompted).

921. Sharing lunch and making new friends.

922. Watching my 13 year old get his wooden railway out and build a super track for a 2 year old.

923. Receiving a gift of spring tulips.

924. The joy of taking a 4 year old for a swim and getting her to take her armbands off for the first time.

925. The blanket of snow that covered our weekend.

926. Deliveries of yarn :o).

927. Ideas forming to create something for my daughter's birthday in March.

928. Enough food in the cupboards to make do over the weekend.

929. Christmas chocolates that melt on your tongue.



1 comment:

  1. So glad you appear to be in a 'better place' as they say.
    You do amazingly well Jane, considering the shape your life has taken in the last couple of years.
    It is such a good thing to have a purpose, and someone to share it with.
    Thanks for the lovely quote from the great Eric Liddell. He really was a most remarkable man, and the quote is a perfect illustration of his beliefs.