Posts Tagged ‘help’

Real community

Posted: May 19, 2015 in Fear, Oh dear
Tags: , ,

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The other day, I did something really stupid. I dropped a blackboard on my foot. It hurt. Kind of. But I was talking to someone and didn’t want to look like a wuss so I didn’t say anything. I walked to my car, put the board in before looking down in case I was bleeding.

The lump on my foot was enormous. I went straight to find help from someone, quietly putting my hand on their shoulder and asking them to have a look. No fuss. The trouble is, by then I was feeling very sick and wobbly. Because when you don’t say ouch, apparently, your body forces you to take notice in other ways.

A trip to A and E and then later on a fracture clinic has led to a diagnosis of severe soft tissue damage. Two weeks later I’m still on crutches and wearing a Darth Vader boot each time I go out. And I still can’t carry anything around the house unless I either crawl or can put it in a shoulder bag.

The thing is, I’m the world’s worst at asking for help. I just don’t do it. I want to manage by myself, especially now as I’m not in so much pain. I feel like a total idiot going round Tescos in a wheelchair or not even being able to make my lunch. It’s frustrating. And I didn’t realise how ashamed and vulnerable I would feel about displaying the contents of my mostly empty fridge to the world. Yes, apparently I do each a lot of mouldy cheese sandwiches and chocolate biscuits. I didn’t realise that either before.

But yesterday, someone came and demonstrated church community to me. They not only took me round Tescos in that wheelchair, but then took me home, made my lunch, and cleaned my bathroom for me. Then they came and got me to give me dinner and company at their house that evening. And it’s not the first time either.

I’m just so grateful to be part of a community that cares. That makes sure people in need are looked after. It’s not always perfect, and it doesn’t always happen, but it is a shadow of the Kingdom of God breaking through in our world.

The whole congregation of believers was united as one—one heart, one mind! They didn’t even claim ownership of their own possessions. No one said, “That’s mine; you can’t have it.” They shared everything. The apostles gave powerful witness to the resurrection of the Master Jesus, and grace was on all of them.

And so it turned out that not a person among them was needy. Those who owned fields or houses sold them and brought the price of the sale to the apostles and made an offering of it. The apostles then distributed it according to each person’s need.

train

Some ideas from a day I spent on a train the other day:

  1. Sneeze explosively across the person sitting next to you and their work.
  2. Picking your nose and then eating it. In full view.
  3. Invading the space of the person sitting next to you. Who wasn’t big to start with.
  4. Shouting “Minnie Mouse” very loudly and repeatedly. (This particular perpetrator was very young).
  5. Asking said perpetrator to be quiet, but clearly not expecting them to obey.
  6. Coughing up your guts and sounding like you might not last out the journey. (Ok, I did feel some sympathy there)
  7. Asking your child “Have you done a poo?” when they are practically sitting on you, while you are eating your lunch. Said poo was way too close to my baguette.
  8. Letting your child poke their fingers forward to your seat and touch your arm, in a way that would be creepy if they were more than 3 years old.
  9. (One for the officials) Not providing plastic boxes for personal belongings going into the X-Ray machine. Said baguette nearly ended up squashed by a suitcase.
  10. (Again, one for the officials) Making someone remove their belt while lunch is getting squashed in the above fashion.
  11. (Final official one) Looking like you might shoot the person who goes to rescue lunch while still removing belt.
  12. Buying MacDonalds for lunch for your family, and the paper bag exploding everywhere. Rejecting help from anyone offering to carry either family, bags or lunch.

And all of these happened on my journey home. The last made me think the most. How much do I reject help when it is offered? “No, I really don’t need you to carry my bag. I’ll just keep on struggling by myself. It’s balanced really….” CRASH
“Of course I can manage!” Hmm.

But the rest were rather amusing. Afterwards…

 

Shame

Posted: April 2, 2013 in A little about me, Hope
Tags: , , , , , ,

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Sometimes, I want to hide everything. I worry so much about what people will think of me when they find out what I’ve done to myself. People either don’t understand at all or, even worse, want to help. “why don’t you just think happy thoughts?” Or they think it is something they have said or done – and often it is.

I think though, that that is only part of the story. I think there is part of me that has been ashamed of what I’ve done. How much I’ve worried people. How something that just seems so wrong can make me feel better.

So I worry about telling people who I really am. I think about the label “self-harmer” that I’m happy to employ myself but I don’t want others to use. I don’t want people to know about the battles that rage inside of me.

But actually, this is so wrong. Because there is nothing that I haven’t already brought to the cross of Christ. God made me to be the person I am warts, thunder thighs, self-harm and all. That doesn’t mean he is happy for me to hurt myself, or not to be the person he has made me to be and all that. But it does mean I can be free of shame.

And also, there is nothing that I have ever done or will ever do that is so bad that it can’t be dealt with by Christ on the cross. And the same goes for everyone. Yes, I have to turn to Christ. But I do because he is the only one who can help.

The Gospel shines its light into even the darkest places. And that means I have nothing to be ashamed of.

NSAD-Artwork

Today is Self-Harm Awareness Day in the UK.

How aware are YOU about self-harm? I could write a fantastic post about it, but Emma Scrivener has already done that, so please take a look at http://emmascrivener.net/2013/03/self-harm-info/ for more details on what self-harm is and how to help others.

All I’m going to say is that I needed (and sometimes still need) all the help I can get to shout out into the darkness that descends. So people who listen to those in that place are just so valuable. You don’t need to offer advice, but just be there and say that you care. And ideally also that God cares.

Let’s beat this thing. Together.

 

 

Found this video today and really like it. In fact I really like the whole idea behind To Write Love on Her Arms. Fantastic stuff. Yet too easily forgotten.

My biggest fear: being rejected. Snakes also pretty high on the list.

My dream: to be well, to get married and have a family as a sign of God’s grace

Attention, please!

Posted: December 19, 2011 in A little about me
Tags: , , ,

Clearly no one likes being rejected. No one likes being the only one not in the thick of things, or being made to feel like they are a waste of space and time. Particularly not me.

I found an old diary this morning, dating back to my difficult teenage years, when rejection from friends and family and school often seemed to be the order of the day. At the time I had no idea what was wrong with my or why no one seemed to like me. It just seemed to happen. But looking back now, it seems impossible that I didn’t understand why. I was so wrapped up in my self and my own world and my own problems, that I wouldn’t have wanted to hang out with me.

But I was staggered at the number of cries for help that there were – actions blatantly calling for attention so much that the school learned just to ignore it, rather than listening properly and trying to help. Some people tried, but there was just such a great wall up by then, that the situation just got worse and worse.

How many times do we ignore the people who are just a bit irritating, or boring, or we just don’t like? How much do we reject someone’s need for attention simply because they are demanding attention. Sometimes, the dramatic can be a means of expression in itself.

So it is now too late for me. I now know how to get the attention I need from the people I need it from in a way that is constructive and helpful. It is mostly by saying “I need help now”, or “This is a real struggle at the moment” or ” please would you pray for me” or something like that. The dramatic didn’t really get me anywhere. But I think I know now to listen more to those who need help. And I also know now, that even if people don’t listen, God does.