28 November 2011

Where's The Bridge?

troubled water (noun): a situation or condition of disorder or confusion.

After a fairly long period of things going so well for me, I find myself in a period of troubled water once again. All of a sudden, life seems incredibly difficult. Even the easy stuff becomes incredibly complex. In fact, nothing is easy. And I wish I knew why... what has happened? What has changed?

When you're down and out
When you're on the street
When evening falls so hard
I will comfort you

I'll take your part
When darkness comes
And pain is all around
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will lay me down
Like a bridge over troubled water
I will lay me down

(lyrics from 'Bridge Over Troubled Water', written by Paul Simon)

Lord, help me. Be that bridge for me, today. See me through this.

21 November 2011

Bad Dreams

Ever had one of those nights?

Last night seemed to drag on forever. Throughout the night hours I was presented with reoccurring sequences from my own life. The cast was made up of former colleagues and acquaintances of mine, people I remember fondly - but this time these people were discouraging, disrespectful, even downright rude about my personal life, about where I am today.

And then I woke up. Realising the entire thing was only a dream helped somewhat, but the experience did unease me for a while. Is that what these people really think about me? Was any of what was being said to me in my dreams really true?

I've made this a matter of prayer today. And, in the midst of the dialogue with my Lord, He reminded me that He loves me. He reminded me that we battle against a foe who deals in lies and half-truths. He reminded me of all of the victories that had been won in my life recently. And He reminded me that a retreating force often tries to regroup and attack again on another front.

The Doug Horley song we've used so often to end Sunday School in recent years is on top of my mind tonight:

WONDERFUL LORD, wonderful God,
You are my shield, my protector.
I can lie down, go off to sleep,
Knowing You’re watching over me.
Wonderful Lord, wonderful God,
Help me to trust You forever.
I need not fear, ’cause You are near,
I can lie down and sleep in peace.
Copyright © 2003 Thankyou Music

Sweet dreams, tonight...

14 November 2011

Don't Lie To Me!

The death of Osama bin Laden apparently resulted in millions of posts on Facebook and tweets on Twitter. However, some of those included a quote attributed to Martin Luther King, Jr that, unfortunately, had never been uttered by King.

So, how do you work out what is truth and what is fiction in your inbox? Tricky. Although it's a great way of keeping in contact, there's a whole host of misinformation, myths, and urban legends out there.

So, here's some good mythbusting sites which you may wish to use:




...and always keep an open mind!

"The most dangerous untruths are truths moderately distorted." - Georg Christoph Lichtenberg

9 November 2011


A recent study by The Children's Society asked a group of children aged between eight and fifteen to identify a list of possessions that they believed were now 'essential' for someone of their age. As the father of a 15-year-old and an 11-year-old, I was very interested in their findings.

Although the study did show there were several luxury items in their final 'must-have' list (iPods, the right sort of trainers, satellite TV), the top five essentials included the use of a garden or open space and 'at least one family holiday away from home each year'.

The number one item which children most commonly missed out on in the 21st Century? It's pocket money, with more than a third of those polled (37 per cent) saying they did not receive any, and 22 per cent saying they missed having it (presumably, this means the children miss have spending money of their own, as the current economic climate means that parents have to watch their outgoings more closely).

You often hear people say that our children 'have too much nowadays'. Interesting, then, to see that the only one material 'possession' that appeared in the top five items was a personal music player. And I remember how important my transistor radio was to me as a teenager!

Here's the top ten they produced, which they've listed in order of importance:

• Some money that you can save each month
• A garden at home or some outdoor space nearby
• Some pocket money each week
• At least one family holiday away from home each year
• A personal music player
• Monthly trips or days out with your family
• A pair of designer or brand name trainers
• The right kind of clothes to fit in
• A family car
• Cable or satellite TV at home

Read the summary of the report here - and their conclusions!

7 November 2011

A is for Acrimony...

I'm aware of a constant battle against feelings of bitterness in my life. I've blogged about this all too often; found myself praying for a way forward on a daily basis. The most frustrating part of these 'attacks' is the surprise; the speed of these overpowering negative feelings takes its toll on me; on such days there's a risk of these feelings overwhelming me. Friends have tried to help me identify the root cause of my resentment; to help me to deal with it, diagnose the 'trigger'. One friend concluded that it's because I've been 'fighting battles on several fronts'.

Recently I've passed a couple of important milestones in my life. The end of an era perhaps, one or two changes that I hope has finally resolved some of these matters. If so, it's an ideal opportunity for me to start again with a clean slate. It's a little early yet, however I'm keen to see whether the changes that have occurred will make the difference.

So it's back to basics for me. I'm studying my A, B, C in anticipation of the forthcoming week. Is it to be:

... A is for Acrimony?
... B is for Bitterness?
... or C is for Cautiously Optimistic?

So far, so good. :)