Tuesday, 12 July 2016


For I have learned in whatever situation I am to be content.
I know how to be brought low, and I know how to abound,
In any and every circumstance, I have learned the secret of facing
plenty and hunger,
abundance and need,
I can do all things through him who strengthens me
Philippians 4:11-12

Is it just me that can see the deep wounds of discontentment everywhere? Britain is renowned for moaning, if it's not the weather it'll be the job, the mortgage, the EU, the government, the NHS, the early mornings. Don't worry I'm not at the beginning of some self-righteous rant, I myself am neck deep in this insidious condition that is discontentment. And I want out.

I can see the wound in most others around me, but sometimes it'll have a different shape. For some it's the little things, that extra £100 bill that snuck out of nowhere and will taint the next week with bitter comments. For others it's the bigger things, dark shadows of fears about the future will lay in wake paralysing people from enjoying the present. Or others that are consumed with pains in the past that they wall themselves up with cynicism to avoid any more.

I always used to think the answer to this problem was the gift of comparison. Finding something worldly that you have that others don't and scaring yourself into an attitude of gratefulness. So if you're struggling with loneliness at least you've got running water, feeling body conscious? At least your legs are working. The last thing I'm saying is we shouldn't be grateful for these things, OF COURSE WE SHOULD! They're such wonderful gifts, but to me that's sort of technique is putting a plaster on a gapping wound that's still bleeding profusely. You've got to get to the heart of the matter, get the stitches out and sort out the problem itself.

Paul claims that he has the answer and it's not actually anything on this earth! That's why it can't work to compare how good our lives are in comparison to others! What if we endured a terrible earthquake and we were in that position that we used to compare ourselves to just to keep afloat? How would we cope then? But Paul says I've got it... I found the secret to contentment no matter what I'm facing on this earth be it lots or nothing - because the thing we are content in does not lie in any of them - but HIM!! I can do all things though HIM, through Christ, who strengthens me!

I'm reminded at this point of what C.S. Lewis says “It would seem that Our Lord finds our desires not too strong, but too weak... like an ignorant child who wants to go on making mud pies in a slum because he cannot imagine what is meant by the offer of a holiday at the sea. We are far too easily pleased". We try and plug the hole that is our discontentment with things in this world! Maybe our very condition of discontentment is an indicator that we are not meant to be satisfied by this world - we crave something more!

Christ is the answer - he is the one who brings contentment who saves us from the illusions, pains and sufferings of this earth and brings us to true joy, true peace and true hope in the story of redemption. Coming back home, coming back to the Father of lights, reuniting us with the maker of our souls and the one with the plan, the only way for us to truly LIVE. He did it through the cross, enduring the consequences of everything we've ever done wrong the very darkness that dwells in every human EVER! He took that to the cross and fought, and won! He rose back to life giving us the victory, and us this HOPE! Ephesians 1:3 says 'Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ'. This is exactly where our contentment should lie - having EVERY SPIRITUAL BLESSING! That is being able to intimately know Christ and the Father through his presence the Holy Spirit, enjoying him and their love forever!

But wait a second, if this is true, why am I even writing this article? Why have I, a Christian been struggling with discontentment? Indeed why does any one who claims to have been saved by Christ wrestle with this wound? In my mind it boils down to where your hope is... or as Jesus said 'where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.' (Matthew 6:21). Too many Christians keep one foot in the world, seeking contentment in what is outside of Christ. But this is not a lost cause - we are not forever caught up in a love-affair with the world 'For freedom Christ has set us free' (Galatians 5:1), the shackles of the world have been broken, we are simply to take them off and lift our hands in praise to the true source of contentment. Beholding Christ, marvelling at all his beauty and saturating ourselves with his love is the only key to true and lasting contentment!

Wednesday, 9 January 2013

2013 playlist

Songs I am absolutely LOVING at the moment:

NEEDTOBREATHE - Keep Your Eyes Open

Tenth Avenue North - By Your Side

Run River North - Foxbeard

Rend Collective Experiment - Alabaster

Tom Field - I'm Giving You My All

NEEDTOBREATHE - Something Beautiful

Jenny and Tyler - Little Balloon

Ed Sheeran - Little Bump

Switchfoot - Faust, Midas and Myself

check these guys out... really cool      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=12Cv3bpj2a4

Switchfoot and Seagulls... need I say more?

Sunday, 18 November 2012

London: Harrods to Borough Market

So the other weekend I went on a trip to London with my mum to visit my brother. I will be the first to admit that I strongly dislike London. I hate the way everyone's so driven, and busy, and crowded, and serious, and..... and.... don't get me started on the underground!!! ULGH!

But I have to admit this trip was pretty special, we made two visits, one to Harrods and one to Borough Market. Wow! They were both incredible places but so different!

Harrods was the epitimie of wealth and perfection, anything would could desire, would that be hand-crafted chocolates, or delicatable cured meats, or the COOLEST toys a kid could dream of, or the most lavish ice-cream sunday ever, or a little hoody for your dog (which, to be honest is just disturbing...) Everything is so refined and pretty and there are halls of everything and anything, each one perfectly designed with beautiful ceilings and stunning chandeliers.

Then there's Borough Market, where all your senses are assalted. There's a riot of colours and smells and textures. There are dead pheasants, and sizzling sausages, and mountains of brownies, and rainbow-coloured vegetables, and pungent cheeses, and incredible mushrooms. There's an electrifying atmosphere as you make your way through the crowds and hear bargaining and cheerful sale cries.

So, what did I prefer? Tricky. They were completely different expereinces, where Harrods felt like some sort of dream, feeling slightly out of place with my cheap rucksack and worn jeanes, yet utterly bedazzling. Whilst in Borough Market I was swept on the tide of raw, frost-bitten, harsh beauty.

To let you experience it for yourself I took some photos:


Borough Market:

And here are some photos of 'London's best coffee shop' - definitely a highlight of the trip!!!

Tuesday, 2 October 2012

Brothers and goodbyes.

My brother has had the longest summer - ever! He spent a year out in UBC and finished in May and then didn't have to go back to Lancaster uni until last Saturday! I've loved having him around for that amount of time - and we've had so many fun times together - so was pretty gutting saying goodbye.

So as a thank you for making my summer really fun - I thought I would do a blog on what makes him a good brother:

1. He's permanently in a good mood - he's rarely grumpy and always up for a laugh!
2. He can't bear it when I'm upset with him - and will often come and see if I'm okay, sometimes even with an apology!
3. Although he loves 'banter' he's quite a deep guy - always thinking through things and we've had some great discussions about theological issues etc.
4. He makes time for people.
5. Got a great sense of humour (although a little random!)

Me and my brother the day he got back from Canada (I iced the cake!)

What are your siblings like?

Thursday, 27 September 2012

A Summer Adventure.

Although summer feels like decades ago I thought I would do a blog about my summer adventure. My mum and I did some travelling around the French/Italian alpes, using a trainline to get from place to place - staying two nights in each place. It was certainly an adventure! We met some lovely people, saw breathtaking scenes and ate delicious food. I have fond memories filled with sunshine and joy - which I could probably write about for pages - but instead I decided to make a montage-map of our travels.


The Good Samaritan - a challenge

So I was reading the Parable of the Good Samaritan the other day. I'm sure you've heard it before - but quick recap - man gets beaten up, then a Priest and a Levite (who you would expect to give some help) busy themselves with excuses and cross to the other side of the road. Then a Samaritan (a race who were enemies with the Jews) stops and helps him - bandaging his wounds and paying for his full recovery.

When reading this parable, I had a feeling of sick recognition of both the Priest and the Levite in me. So hears a challenge I wrote, for me and anyone who feels the same way!

What is it that turns us to the other side?
When we see pain and shrug our shoulders,
Or see an opportunity and march swiftly on.
Is it our pride?
Is it our business?
Self-obsession or fear?
Dellusion, commitments, self-importance, self-hatred?
You hear the voice, calling 'help him', 'give that', 'speak now'.
How about not turning to the other side?
What about obeying?