Bits’n’Blogs (April 2013)

I’m here, but I’m not really here. I’m just popping in, and loading up my Twitter app with scheduled tweets, to tell you about the best of the blogs for April. Tomorrow I’ll post my ‘what I’m into’ for April. and then you’ll have a whole lot of great things to read while I abstain from all internet for a WHOLE WEEK. Sounds good, no?


Here are some of the best things around the interwebs this month:


On illness and suffering

  • Malcolm Guite – Thank God for doubting Thomas. I loved this poem, and his accompanying sermon on doubt and healing, ‘Touching the wounds’, really ministered to me.
  • Kay Morgan Gurr – Can I pray for healing for you? Lady: can I pray for your leg? Me: no. This is an honest and helpful response from a chronically ill Christian on why sometimes it’s NOT helpful to pray for healing.
  • Susan Silk and Barry Goldman for the LA Times – How not to say the wrong thing. Dump out: comfort in. This is GENIUS – a must-read for any friends of people who are suffering. (Scroll down past the annoying ads.)
  • Stephanie Glidden @ Walking through the valley – Insurance vs Assurance. I am new to this blog, written by the wife of a man who has ALS (a terminal neurological illness which slowly paralyses you). Her thoughts on illness and suffering are well worth perusing, and I liked this piece particularly.


Depression and suicide
On 5 April, Rick and Kay Warren’s son, Matthew, committed suicide. He had been struggling with severe depression for most of his life. The Warrens’ moving statement is here. I have been praying for them as they grieve and process their tragic loss while under a considerable amount of public scrutiny. Since then, others have written very helpful articles on suicide, depression and Christianity:


On writing

  • Addie Zierman has a book deal! I actually cried when I read this – I have been following Addie’s journey for so long, and just waiting and waiting for this to happen for her. Every week, she writes my heart. And I CANNOT WAIT for this book. It’s coming out in the autumn/fall. Put a big fat ring around your diary for that whole season so you dont miss it. It’s gonna be good.
  • Preston Yancey also has a book deal! It’s on the silences of God. I so need to read this book – and maybe you do, too. Keep an eye out for this one.
  • Sarah Bessey for DL Mayfield – In which i am (not much of a) war photographer – on storytelling and friendship –
  • Elora Nicole – what she has learnt from publishing series – especially this


This month in the papers:


At the beginning of April, the world felt a very dismal place. Here in the UK, the severe cuts are just beginning to take hold, and many vulnerable people are all the more vulnerable. And we are still in a recession. And it was snowing and cold:


On disability and welfare cuts


M.E. news

  • Cort Johnson – Could oxygen-starved tissues be causing pain and fatigue in patients with ME/CFS? – long but helpful
  • In the UK, there is a new research initiative launched for CFS/ME. I am tentatively pleased about this: there are reservations that it includes psychiatric research rather than exclusively focusing on much-needed bio-medical research, but almost all of the main M.E. charities are involved, so that looks promising. Most exciting is a biobank, with the hope that we can begin to gather enough data to search for biomarkers in the illness.
  • Harlow boy with CFS denied home tuition – This is STILL going on. There is a common assumption, fed by the NICE guidelines and certain quarters of the medical community, that ME in children is nothing more than truancy and school phobia. As a result, sick children are being deprived of the resources they need.

Phew! Bit of a bumper edition, this month. Hope you find the links helpful.

Over to you:

  • What’s the best thing you’ve read on the blogosphere this month?
  • Liked this post? Do stay in touch – subscribe by email or like my Facebook page.


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    13 Responses to Bits’n’Blogs (April 2013)

    1. Stephanie 7th May, 2013 at 7:39 pm #

      Tanya, thank you for these links. You are helping more than you know.

      • Tanya 16th May, 2013 at 10:22 am #

        Thanks for this – it encouraged me more than you know πŸ™‚

    2. Kiki Malone 5th May, 2013 at 8:58 pm #

      Thanks for the plug!

      • Tanya 16th May, 2013 at 10:22 am #

        You’re most welcome!

    3. Tim Carlisle 5th May, 2013 at 8:09 pm #

      Cort Johnson piece very interesting – I’ve long wondered why this wasn’t being explored – my own secret theory for about ten years has been based on Mitochondria – in that anaerobically respiring muscles would account for a great many of the symtoms. I didn’t ever actually think it WAS right – but was staggered at the medical profession for not really looking at it…. until now it seems. (I think that staggered is probably a result of realising that medicine still believes and has believed for the ten years that it is in the head. And yet I guess that you could describe what many ME patients experience as life permanently at the end of a marathon.

      • Tanya 16th May, 2013 at 10:21 am #

        Tim – this only goes to show that you are a scientific genius. Or – doctors and medical researchers are very, very lazy. Or both πŸ™‚

        Sarah Myhill has done some good stuff on mitochondria research in M.E. I kind of understand it, but then I glaze over a little when it gets a bit biochemically…

        Thanks for reading this, and for always seeking to understand better. I really appreciate it.

    4. Leese 4th May, 2013 at 8:23 pm #

      Thanks so much – some of those on illness/suffering were new to me.

      I also blogged about the Ring Theory article a couple of weeks ago – it was good. There were a few other good articles that came out around that time about being an ill friend that I linked to also. The new book that came out at the first of April from the gal who had cancer and treated at MSKCC really helped, I think, as far as getting some publicity and attention brought to those sorts of issues, which are seldom addressed otherwise!

      I always appreciate your blog, but especially appreciated this round up with several I’d not have seen otherwise! πŸ™‚

      • Tanya 16th May, 2013 at 10:19 am #

        I’m SO glad you appreciated this – I often wonder about the usefulness of this round-up stuff. I hadn’t heard about the book about the girl with cancer etc – do you have a link to it? X

    5. Mark Allman 4th May, 2013 at 7:41 pm #

      See you next week! πŸ™‚

    6. learning2float 4th May, 2013 at 7:31 pm #

      I do so love your round ups of the blogosphere. Thank you.

      • Tanya 16th May, 2013 at 10:18 am #

        I’m really glad! Each month, it takes WAY longer than it should and by the time I go to post I swear this will be the last… But then I also hope that maybe it can be a good resource for people, too.
        So – thank you!


    1. What I'm into (April 2013) | Thorns and Gold - 5th May, 2013

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