Tag Archives: spiritual formation

I Say ‘Resurrection’ to The Mocker

I don’t think I could ever be a politician.

I look at what politicians have to put up with and know I couldn’t handle it. Adulation one day, then a knife in the back the next.

All those negative voices. People wanting to tear you down, and being ready to do anything to achieve your destruction. It’s a dog eat dog world where the dogs are always on the scrounge for that tasty morsel they can trot out and display. Continue reading

Get Your Hands Dirty, You Snob!

Even you need to be part of the rebuild.

There are some people who really get me fired up. They are the ones who in essence say ‘I don’t want to get my hands dirty’.

They essentially don’t want to be part of what you are doing.

As a child I was read the story of the Little Red Hen. The story describes this little hen asking all her barnyard friends to help with the various activities of growing a crop of wheat right through to the baking of the bread. Continue reading

and next to them

I want to do it my way.  I don’t need others help. I can rebuild my life and recover in my own strength. To admit that I need help is a sign of weakness. That I am just like them.

No, I am better than that. I will continue to hold on to that pride and resist any exposure and vulnerability to others lest I be considered weak and incapable.

Are you like this too? Continue reading

In Recovery YOU Have To Do The Work

The old saying is true. You can lead a horse to water but you can’t make it drink. It’s also true that you can take the water to the horse, put the water in a china cup and sprinkle rose petals over and it still won’t drink.

In my years as a pastor/ chaplain/ mental health worker the ones who made the progress and saw recovery were the ones who did the work. They didn’t sit around smoking all day, regaling the old days. They were the ones who made the effort to change. Continue reading

What to Do With Shame Slingers

I love watching those ‘Mission Impossible’ shows. 

The script takes you to places where you wonder how this ‘Mission Impossible’ will be resolved because if it isn’t then the whole city is going to be destroyed in a nuclear explosion.

I have met people who live in the shadow of a ‘Mission Impossible’. In fact they have given up on life being any different. The obstacles seem too big and difficult and daunting and … impossible. 

People who have lived under this shadow have been there so long that this is all they know. Continue reading

Community = Common Unity = Mental Health Recovery

Every Tuesday night in our church service John would stand up and like a little mouse he would come to the front and ask permission to share a passage he had memorised.

The Living Room church service was set up to be an alternative to the mainstream services held on Sunday. It was geared to be highly inclusive and supportive to people struggling with disabilities, in particular those with Mental Illnesses. Continue reading

When You’re Rebuilding There is Always More Underneath

On first appearances everything looked great until you went underneath. The old house had that lovely country cottage feel about it but as time went on discoveries were made of rotting walls, leaking pipes and drains not working properly.

There was always going to more underneath than what was first realized.
We can be like this too. Putting out our best appearances, looking good, but knowing that you like everyone else is fighting a hard battle. Continue reading

Becoming Fire-Proof: Protecting Ourselves from Burnout

After years of teaching high school in downtown Los Angeles, my wife accepted a job four hours away.

On top of my daily stressors of dealing with students and colleagues and deadlines at the school, I now moved to a tiny studio apartment, commuted to see my wife on weekends, and applied for hundreds of jobs, all while we were desperately trying to get pregnant after years of no success.

On top of that, I was stuck in a negative emotional response to my situation. Continue reading

You Need Reinforcing Mesh For Your Mental Health Rebuild

I recently watched some guys putting down a concrete path.

Just before they laid the concrete down, a mesh of steel reinforcing was placed into the trench. The concrete was then poured around this mesh until hidden away.

Now I have seen concrete work done where there was no reinforcing mesh. With a little time and some pressure the concrete just cracked open like a biscuit.  Continue reading