Life is like Good Friday

What is Good Friday? For those that don’t know, and if you’re not Christian there’s no reason that you should unless you’ve heard or been told, this is the day that changed the world! Today Jesus gave his life so we could have a lifeline to God and spend eternity in heaven. To go further, it means that the one man in history who is sinless became sin so every time we do something wrong it is wiped clean and forgiven. There isn’t a sin in the world that isn’t forgiven. I tell my children though that doesn’t mean they can start doing whatever they like after I saw the excitment this conjured up!

So, if it resulted in the death (later resurrection but thats for easter Sunday!) of the greatest human that could ever live why on earth is the day called ‘good’? That’s a good question and has lots of different answers which is quite common in lots of the bible theories. Some say its ‘good’because Jesus saved us all. some say it comes from “Gods Friday” or that “good’ used ot mean “Holy’. Whatever the reason the meaning is the same.

And I often think that life can be like a ‘Good friday’ especially for many during times like we are facing right now. We have uncertainty, worry and a sense of loss of hope. We are losing loved ones, worried about others and not being able to see those we long to be with. For some they are with people that make their lives very difficult, children have been uprooted from everything they know and listen to adults worries makes them more insecure. People have lost jobs, businesses, homes, a sense of security. Parents have suddenly been catapulted into the roll of teacher, some for more than one child of different ages and abilities, trying to teach Special needs children who require much more time and equipment, trying to keep up with at least some of the constant work set with sometimes uncooperative children and at the same time expected to hold down a full time job at home. Or worried because they have no jobs and they don’t want to show their concerns in front of already bewildered children.

Everyone is just trying to get through each day the best they can.

Then there are people who face mental health issues and being isolated makes it all a hundred times worse. if people arent seeing them how can they notice if they really are ok when they say they are but they are’t sleeping and its taking all their effort to just. keep. going.  They can’t go to support groups or therapy sessions or to just get out to break they cycle of feeling so lost. 

There is no respite for carers, no respite for the abused, no respite for the child who has parents that drink and theres no food in the house. 

This is why life is like a “good Friday’.

But there is always hope. After Good Friday there came easter Sunday. A day of hope and resurrection where the world was saved. .

There is a light which will show after all this darkness. It may not feel like it now, and believe me I’ve been there but Jesus will Bring hope into your life. It may be all of a sudden or it may be gradually but it will happen. Sometimes we have to go through the darkest tunnel to find the way out. I don’t know why and it definitely isn’t fair but we can use it to help others going through the same.

Right now we are in Good friday but soon, very soon we will be celebrating Easter Sunday. Just hold on.

It’s not the end….

I know you feel alone

and as if you’re on your own

but your mind is telling you lies

you feel as if you need to die.

you feel that nobody cares

and there’s just nobody there

I can’t pretend to know you

but i’ve been there that much is true

the devil is whispering in your ear

At this moment he feels so near 

but reach out to god above

ask him to enfold you in his love.

I’ve felt the pain that you feel

I know the feelings are so real

how you’d be better off not here

how you can’t fight another year.

i wish I could be there thats true

to sit down and tell you I’m with you

This doesn’t have to be the end

I swear jesus can help you mend.

There’s nothing you’ve done that’s too bad

Just your love will make Him so glad

Please stop and think some more

Tell the devil to get out the door.

He’s telling you things that just aren’t true

So many people around care for you

It’s not time for you to part

Its not the end….Its just the start.

I’m Fine

How are you? You ask.
Just fine thanks.
What I really want to say is
I’m drowning and I can’t save myself
I’m tired all the time but I can’t sleep
I’m lonely but I don’t have the energy to talk
I hurt myself because I feel so numb
I have nothing to complain about
So why do I feel so down?
The days are going by but
I don’t know if I’ll make it
But I’ll paint a smile and say I’m fine.
How are you I ask?
Oh I’m fine you say…..

Learn?

When life returns to normal

What kind of life will we choose

Will we keep some things the same?

And what old ways will we lose?
Has this taught us what’s important?

Will we drop some things that we do?

Will we rush from meeting to phone call!

Or will people become more important to you?
Will we value those around us?

And enjoy each moment like it’s our last?Will we put loved ones before anything?

Or will we go back to our ways of the past?

Be perfect

This is a poem I wrote ages ago about how I felt at the time what it was like to be female. I’m going to put some of my poetry on here so I don’t lose it and in the hope that I may start writing again.

Be pretty, be smart
Not too smart though
Smile at all the guys
Stop smiling you look like a hoe
You look great but
Have you tried this diet pill?
Just lose a few more pounds
What’s wrong you look so Ill?
Beauty comes in all sizes
Why aren’t you a size ten?
It’s great that you’re so independent
But honey don’t you want to attract men?
Your lips are so pretty
Maybe a bit more pout?
Don’t flaunt your body but
get that cleavage out.
No always means no
But tell me this
What were you wearing
And your fault if you started the kiss.

You need to be thinner
You need to try more
Wear your clothes a bit tighter
But don’t get classed as a whore!
Buy this product
To clear up your skin
Go to the gym to get curves
But maybe you’d look better thin?
Don’t wear too much make up
But without you look rough
No matter how you try Princess
You’ll never be quite good enough.

For many life is the same.

It’s hard to avoid the topic of the ‘C’ word right now. There isn’t a person in the World that doesn’t know about it because we are all going through it together. Loss of freedom, money worries, not seeing loved ones, unemployment, loneliness, completely overwhelmed….we are all experiencing similar things.

There are a group of people that know more than most what this is like. And I belong to them. Luckily for me life is nowhere near as bad as what it is for millions. We are the ones that have illness (physical and mental) and disabilities that have made an impact on our everyday lives. The ones that have been living this life for years, silently and without recognition.

We are the ones that have lost jobs, lost friends, some haven’t been outside in years. We empathise with what everyone is going right now because we know what it’s like!! We have and are living it.

And whilst we empathise and absolutely feel pain for what is happening to everyone, there is a side of me that wants to say “you didn’t notice before!” Now this is happening to everyone it’s talked about and realised but there’s still those that don’t. They take up the shopping slots when many cannot get their own food. They tell us they know what it feels like now.

What they are going through is not the same. Many can still work from home, their friends still check on them, and they can still take exercise. They are not really confined indoors like so many are right now. On top of that many get refused disability allowance or it takes months to sort out.

One thing I am hoping when this has ended is that people will think to check on those in their community that will still be at home, unemployed and on lockdown when the rest of the world are back to living freely.

Luke and 2 Timothy….

In our church we follow set readings each week which follow in order and I have been having a go at writing “sermons”  for each one and I thought I would start putting them on here mainly so I didnt lose them and the more I learn about each part of the Bible then I could add to my writings.

 

These days its not always easy being, or at least telling people that you are a Christian. Its sometimes seen as Old-fashioned or at least not a modern day thing and because of this mind set it is easy to just go along with what everyone else thinks. Its all too easy to go along with a popular opinion rather than challenge it especially if the truth makes us feel uncomfortable. At Church its easy to be who you are because everyone else is there for the same reasons but its when its more difficult to speak up is when Paul is telling Timothy thats when it should also be done. What is also important for those preaching to actually preach the Word of God and not try and glorify themselves. Its also easy to think that this verse doesnt apply to the majority of us, after all very few of us are Vicars or Readers or equivalant but thats not what Paul was saying. The word “preach” is the Greek word “keyroxon”which means to publish or proclaim openly. Therefore anybody can do this wherever they are even if it doesnt feel very comfortable! It is also important to preach without words in the every day things that we do. When we smile, hold the door for people, help a starnger, dont participate in Gossip and through all acts of kindness we are preaching the gospel. As St. Francis of Assissi was quoted to have said “Preach the Gospel at all times. If necessary, use words”. This is something every one of us can do. The young, the older, the bed ridden, even those who cant talk. We can all Preach the Gospel. Someonewho did spread the news of Jesus was Anna who was a widow. Widows are mentioned quite a lot in the Gospels and the one in our reading today was the persistant widow. she kept on at the Unjust judge until he got so fed up he granted her justice. Now, I dont think this is saying that we should keep on until God gets fed up with us but rather that we should be persistant in prayer even when it seems that God may not even be hearing, he is. He looks after the vulnerable people like the wdow in the story when they coe up against unjust situations, like the judges portrayal. As we said before with spreadung the Word, prayer is something anyone can do no matter your circumstances and is the most important thing anyone cando so dont ever think ” all i can do is pray” as prayer is so crucial and I believe can make a difference if God hears the longing in us.
So in concusion of our readings today we have learnt that wherever we are and whoever we are with we should be spreading the Gospel and that we need to pray. lets finish with the final line in the parable “And yet, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth? and ask ourselves that when Jesus comes will he find real faith inside of each of us?

I see you.

I see you.
You are struggling with your 3 year old wondering why she is screaming this time. You are trying to avoid the bites and hits as you don’t want to get yet another bruise and all the while you avoid looking at the disapproving stares of passers by that wonder why on earth a child that age is in a buggy still and why cant you just control her? You hear them whisper how you need to learn to dissapline her or how she’s just a spoilt brat and you want to shout at them that you are doing all that you know how to do.
I feel you.

Endless hours pouring over books and searching internet pages and forums trying to see if your child is ever going to be able to tell you whats wrong and if you are ever going to be able to just go to a shop like most other parents without having to make sure every known meltdown trigger is out of the way and how you wish you even knew what the triggers were most of the time. Will it be the noise, smell, crowds, a word or the fact you have to go a different route to the shop this time?
My heart breaks for you.
As you just don’t know what to do and you have no one that really understands. How can they when you don’t even understand your own child? You don’t know how you are going to get through another day and there won’t even come a small respite for you when other children will sleep as you know sleep just won’t happen again. The overwhelming tiredness is impossible to describe. How you felt when you fell asleep during the speech therapy session because you could actually sit down and you’d only had a few hours sleep in days and the constant wondering if it was possible to sleep whilst walking with one eye shut. The tiredness makes the daily struggle to get her dressed even more of a workout. You don’t know yet but the fabric of many things hurts her skin.
I know you.
And I know you will be just fine.
You love your child so much you will give all you have to get to know everything about her and you will fight for the right school and you won’t listen to people saying the things she won’t be able to do. You will become stronger than you ever thought possible and your child will talk and will be toilet trained and will eat something other than potato waffles! She will grow up to be more than you could ever imagine. It will be hard and the route will be different than many others but you will get to know people along the way that will be such a blessing.
And one day you will just be sitting there as your daughter is nearly an adult and has just finished her weekend job, because she will get a job, and you will think.
We did it.

Toilet Twinning

 

 

There are days when we get frustrated in our house because we only have one toilet which is also the same room as our bath is in, and when everyone needs to get ready in the morning it can be a bit chaotic and noisy with everyone shouting for whoever is in there to get out. And of course everyone always needs the loo at the same time!

 

For a huge number of people however, one toilet in their whole village would be a luxury. Not just one toilet in their house, but between all the houses. Whilst we take for granted being able to go to the toilet whenever we want ( okay, sometimes in our house we have to wait for hours!!) there are so many people who have never used a toilet. They spend so much of their day getting water, using the bush as a restroom and for girls, missing school when they have their period because there are no facilities for them.

Not only do many not have toilets but they also don’t have knowledge of hygiene which results in illness and death. There are such sad stories of girls being attacked as they go to the toilet in the bush.

 

I, in my ignorance, had never thought that there were people out there suffering in this way. Every place I go I locate the toilet first ( the result of having 4 children!) Until, in my desperation to use the toilet when we were in town, I popped into the nearest church and I happened to see a picture of a toilet on their wall. I looked closer as it seemed like an odd thing to have as decoration and that’s how I learnt about toilet twinning. It costs sixty pounds and that gets you a certificate to hang on your toilet wall of the toilet yours has been “twinned” with. I really wanted to do something and used my savings to twin our toilet but mostly I wanted to make people aware that this was going on in the world and we could do something to help…so I organised a jumble sale with the help of the village donating their goods and time and spending their money! It was a lot of hard work and nights spent at the hall sorting through everything but it was so nice to spend that time with my children and seeing them so passionate about raising money for others. The day was so we supported I was grateful to live in such a community and we raised enough money to buy a single toilet and a school block!!! And maybe mmore importantly were the amount of leaflets people took or read and the knowledge people gained.

 

Now as we are finding homes for the remains of the goods, we are thinking ahead to our next challenge…the mean bean challenge. If we are fortunate enough to have been born in this part of the world then we should do anything we can to help those that aren’t. It could so easily have been us.

Nearly there…with Anxiety

It is nearly the end of another school year and the start of the summer fun. I always look forward to the holidays as I love having my children home with me. and for them, this term at school is all about fun and transition and there is so much excitment and things going on that even the most reluctant of learners seem to enjoy going to school each day.  Eating outside, Sports days, leaving plays…the fun just goes on!

 

But this term, even more so than the one leading up to Christmas, fills me with dread.

And thats because it causes many children with Special Needs so much Anxiety. Gone are the strict timetables that they feel safe with and know so well. Sports day can be cancelled at the last minute due to rain and usual lessons make way for time spent outside or activities weeks.  There is panic over whether they will have to eat outside.

And the biggest fear my children have is their new classes. I can sense it coming on year after year when the realisation that everyone is getting excited about being a year older at school and talking about what to get their teachers for leaving presents. There is so much for them to think and worry about. Who will their new teacher be? What Teaching Assistants will they have in the class? Where will they sit? Does the teacher know the things that make life that little bit easier for them? And then they get to spend a day with their new teachers which is very exciting for most but for children like mine, it interupts their usual day.

So, whilst I love the light evenings and special things going on at school (although hard to juggle with work and not wanting to let my children down) I am ready for the questions, tears and fears that the Summer brings!