Advent 2017: Getting Out of the Boat – Again!

OK, it’s been a very long time since I’ve posted. Sometimes life gets in the way.

I’m working on getting back into this ministry properly now. Starting by getting back to the “Dream Giver” series.

I’d felt like I was in Wasteland when I was writing a couple of months ago. There was a lot of loss and a lot of hurt going on in my life and so after much thought I stopped writing for a season.

I’ve been job-hunting for the whole time, and have had more rejections in the last few months than I can count. I hit wall after wall. My wife has had a very hard few months as well. Both physically and emotionally we have had a real beating.

That’s why I feel Advent is a good time to shake myself offsdr

and get back out of the boat.

I feel like I’m writing a new chapter on a blank page… (and yes, that actually is my desk!)

So to start off, I’m looking at the last few months as though they have been told me as a story from someone else. It’s a technique that allows me to see events from a vastly different perspective, and one that has helped me break barriers of Doubt in the past.

I ask myself some simple questions and so here is the first of the answers I’ve come up with…

I think I missed it. Sanctuary. I look at the last few months and I realise what I thought was Wasteland was actually something quite different. It has been a time where I’ve wrestled to surrender my own “big Dream” to God.

In April when we arrived in England we were staying in a beautiful Bed and Breakfast in Kewstoke, Somerset called “The Owl’s Crest” for a month. My wife was in a great place in regard to her health, we had a secure income and for the first time in years I was able to simply “be” for a while.

I missed it.

I could have relaxed and let God wash the battle from me. But I didn’t.

I remember a few years ago hearing a teacher talking about Psalm 23. He said we have a tendency to become human doings, instead of beings. That’s definitely me. I’ve been busy for 8 months and I’ve got nothing to show for it. “He makes me lie down in still pastures”. He has to force me to stop and take stock, relax and recharge.

And I’m terrible at it.

My dad stopped working as a teacher when he was 49. They called it “medical retirement” and paid him the same amount to stay home that they had been to teach thanks to insurance. But he never stopped working. In fact the next 7 years until he died may have been the busiest I’d ever seen him. But the first thing he did after he accepted he had to retire was stop.

Only for a few days, but he stopped.

We took a holiday together, just him and me, to Italy. It was a whirlwind, but we managed to see Pompeii and Herculaneum, visit the top of Vesuvius and drive a rental car on an Italian freeway that made me begin to consider the concept of survival of the fittest. He rested and recharged, then he started his battles again but he fought in a different way and a different arena.

I missed that chance in April.

I even missed it again in July when we took a few days to visit the Lake District.

In a week we travel to Cape Town for Christmas. I am determining not to miss it again!

Living in a Spiritual “sinking boat” for a few months shakes you up and makes you doubt everything. So the only way to rest is to fix your eyes back on Jesus and step out onto the water – and ignore the storm.

It’s only the last few days as I’ve determined to refocus onto Jesus and I’ve found the desire and passion to write again that I’ve realised what’s been happening. A big part of it is not my story to tell, so forgive the holes over the next few entries and please don’t sit screaming “WHY????” as you read. I can only tell my story.

As the chapters unfold over the next few weeks I hope it will become clear…



2 thoughts on “Advent 2017: Getting Out of the Boat – Again!

  1. Awww, I enjoyed your post. So many times we do miss the moments! Be grateful that you see now. Enjoy your trip, and I do hope that things for your family turn around, but know that God is overseeing it all.


    • Thanks Barbara!

      I’ve had to do a lot of internal searching the last few weeks since I wrote this post. I’m working on a kind of update/fresh start post I’m hoping to get up today or tomorrow because things are changing so rapidly suddenly.



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