Return to Normality

Four go back and all on track… I think.backtoschool

Yet a year or more of being constantly on call has taken it’s toll




Now all back to school.

I don’t do silence very well, it makes my legs itch.

But this quiet has been longed for.

The house returning to normality, the quiet rhythm of the day.


While I can wish that somethings never happened,

I can not wish away what I have learnt about myself and others.

I love the chaos and thrive in mess, but don’t do well without a space to rest.


I have changed forever yet I remain committed

to community,

knowing that I also need to step back on a regular basis.

to family,

yet even here I need my space, not hiding behind a paper or screen but so I can fully engage.

to God,

even when my mind can not compute and I wrestle with the truth

to Meg (my dear wife and best friend),

with whom I have shared many tears and learnt not to fear the sadness, we are closer now than ever.

to caring for myself,

I’m getting fitter, lighter, reflecting more and learning to live each day in the light of God’s grace.


In this return to normality I do not crave a lack of chaos, but simply the space to handle it well. To retain clear thinking where I can practise, loving God, neighbour and self.


Being present for me requires an empty head.


Frozen or fruitful?

Alarm, tea, kids awake, breakfast, back to school, coffee, tidy up…
The long summer break over,
We are finally back on it.

Sitting ready.
Almost quite.
Lid open, fingers twitch…
Back on it, online.
Send and receive…

Like a tsunami they flood in.
Likes, comments, junk mail, post, statements, requests.
Topped off by my own internal conversation of all the could and should be done.
Then it comes.

Brain freeze!

Thoughts locked down.




But this is the wrong sort of silence, the wrong sort of stopped.

Locked inside and out.

That sort of stopped.

There is a right sort, the beach, BBQ, the sunset sort.
Those happy, sacred days of rested nothingness.
In that place, the flow of the tsunami is reversed.
My mind the epicentre rather than the laid waste shoreline.

The silence of the frozen mind.
A facade for the uncomfortable truth.
Inside the waters rip and tear and at the fabric of my thinking.
Not the quiet exterior but the internal raging thought chaos of hundreds of unresolved mental loops.

We had the answers.
We created so we could always rest.
The reality is the we never leave the network.
We are addicted to this mass of nothingness and pointless likes that overwhelm and destroy our minds.

How quickly I forget the simple truth.

I was not made to be a coast ravaged by the weight of incoming water but was made to be fruitful and to produce fruit that will last.

Stand back.

Allow the wave to pass.

There is another wave coming, of greater magnitude.

Mind free.

It begins in me.

Living beyond the pain of yesterday

Reflecting on a difficult year and the start of a new one. On how we can so easily slip into survival and self protection, life is not easy, but life is better than just getting through.

Living beyond the pain of yesterdaylets do life

Life leaves us hurting
Relationships are rarely easy
Parenting is painful
Leadership is lonely
Creativity always costly

Today I celebrate…. but it is not always like that

Shrink back
Pull away
Close off

Survival is key…. but living is better

God, others, self…

I don’t want to walk on broken glass, it hurts my feet…

But today
I choose to walk
Though the pain of yesterday
Towards the hope of today

Diving head first into the wounded hands of the life giver
Thanking God for the gift of marriage, of children and of friends




Leaving behind the drysuit of survival that numbed the pain

as painful are you are
today I choose