For the times when we despair of humanity and ourselves, and think, ‘we can’t do this’, it is a good reminder to do as the writer to the Hebrews instructed the first Christians: remember Jesus. At those times when we feel frustrated, we need to be reminded that we don’t see it yet. We don’t see the ending, when goodness and order will be restored and the earth will be as it should. But we do see Jesus.
For us it was my unexpected neurological illness that turned our love upside down. If love languages were inflexible things, we would have been sunk.
My son had his first movie premiere at the church with about ten of his classmates, who were kind enough to come on a Saturday morning and were fed popcorn and ice cream for their efforts. Alas, there will be no sequel, however – even before the boy said his emphatic ‘No’, you could have guessed from looking at the director’s bloodshot eyes that this would not be repeated. (Magic Man got bored of wearing the helmet about one day into filming.)
I’m a mezzo soprano, mezzo meaning ‘middle’ and sounding like ‘messy’, both of which I feel. In our culture, we are accustomed to disdaining the middle. The words ‘average’ and ‘mediocre’ sound insulting – we like the top, and even the bottom; we like the extremes, the specialisms.
Eventually I sob out to a few friends on Voxer: Who am I? What am I doing with my life? – and it feels good to have released something. My friend Sarah replies, and says that in lots of cultures around the world, the women, particularly the mothers, are the archivists. They record the memories, take the photos, write the stories.
Today I was interviewed by Maria Rodrigues from the Woman to Woman program on UK’s Premier Christian Radio on my experience of becoming housebound, my journey with ME, and how I came to write my book, Coming Back to God When You Feel Empty
Covenant friends are friends you commit to for life, a bit like a marriage relationship, but without necessarily the geographical proximity. (And without the sex, obviously).
I feel a little embarrassed even comparing platonic friendships with marriage, and I think that sense of shame is worth noting – we have to explain or apologise for close friendships. Our society unconsciously sends the message that intimacy and commitment is reserved only for romantic relationships, so we treat very close friendships with suspicion.
Can we just all agree, unanimously, to put a pause on January? Wouldn’t that be nice – just to have a couple of weeks of zero time, an empty space with neither Christmas nor New Year Resolutions – so we can all catch up with ourselves before the year begins?