Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Face the music and dance

Okay, confession time. I’ve been in a bit of a state over the last few days and it seemed to be getting worse. By the end of Agape last night, I was ready to quit my job and resign as household leader.

I was rescued somewhat from this grim state of mind by a timely word from my ‘Supernatural’ brother, a passing comment from a sister that sometimes the best thing to do is ‘go to bed’ (I did, shortly afterwards) and a short conversation with the same brother about one of my favourite stories, which he’s reading at present (A Wizard of Earthsea: it’s a corker – like a lot of wonderful, wonderful tales it’s ostensibly for children...)

Why am I like this? And should I be going public? (What will it do to morale? Shouldn’t a leader always be on tippity-top?)

Well, on the basis that honesty is a good thing, I’m being honest. And as for the reasons for my low ebb? Well, a combination of things, each one not worthy of too much angst, but put together... uncertainty as to my role in the congregation and church (prophet? pastor? liability?), a tricky relationship that’s trickily enough been a bit tricky recently, a fairly long fast with no discernable result apart from hunger and feeling depressed, no time for things that are important at home, too much time for things that seem relatively unimportant at work, words that were said to me that have made me lose my confidence, and sins of the heart and of the mind.

Any advice, dear reader? Pull myself together? Beat myself until morale improves? Get out in the wild outdoors? (As luck would have it, we are going to the Welsh coast on Saturday for a household jaunt, which I think will be a tonic).

Or I could just dance – that usually does the trick: makes others laugh too...


DarrenDeliberate said...


Thinking practically, is there anyway you could free yourself up from work for a day or two (or half days, travel permitting) If your colleagues understand the need they help to achieve this.

Spiritually not all results are instant or indeed obvious at the time they happen, I'm sure it wasn't wasted effort.

Emotionally we are all human and have our 'why bother' and 'wheres the sense in it all' moments. I'm sure if you take stock of what you have done in your years with the JA, recount some of the successes and realise where you are now, you will (hopefully) begin to feel better.

As a word of encouragement I agree that honesty is the best policy, if all Pastors/Leaders were always tip-toppy it would appear false and unattainable to those that need to follow your trodden path.

And if your just simply feeling down and want to talk (or not even that, just offload any of the angst and frustration) please feel free to call me or collar me whenever I'm round, as a friend I'd feel honoured to be of any help.

From my outside perspective I believe you have a richness of life that many lack, I include myself in that 'many'.

Bless you and I hope God brings the confirmation your in need of.

AotF said...

I know this story about a prosthetic leg which might cheer you up...

HR?I said...

aww James *hugs* and lots more *hugs* *hugs* *hugs*
(in case you hadnt noticed- i dont know what to say.) *hugs* if its any comfort, when im at my lowest, listening to christian songs and doing something creative usually helps me to get back close to God. its usually in our lowest moments when God can find us cos otherwise we have(maybe uncontiously) the view that we can do things on our own and 'dont need God that much today thank you'. *hugs* God is still there and sending *hugs* so im sending *hugs* as well. Love you dad xxxxx

muppet said...

then my brain works abit faster and i think 'have i just put my foot in it?' hope not. you really are loved james

TJ said...

Dance like no one is watching and love like you've never been hurt.

On the wether you should be 'coming out' and saying how you feel.I think you gain more respect by being honest than if you're not...

; ) The TJ

dee-braveheart said...

to start with stop being so hard on yourself
and once your fast is over chocolate cake works wonders
in the mean time i would take a day or so off gather the kids and anna up and go for a long walk together with no phone and just be a hubby and dad and then take a bro or two and go find a hill to climb and when you get to the top shout scream dance and pray
trust me a good scream is soooooooo good when you are feeling like yoiu are right now
in the mean time i just want to say tht you are a hugh inspiration to many
and this is going to be a funny time of year coz normally you would be winding down for the summer but in the job you now have you do not have the long summer
put all the is important in to perpective and dismiss all that is not your mind will be a much clearer space
much grace adn esteem

tschaka said...

My friend (remember Irish Ian from Uni?) used to have a hand-drawn poster on his wall with the words: "Eternal Perspecitve" - He always wanted to bear that in mind as a leader. I think that's all you need... that, and lot's of love and chocolate cake!

BTW I may be going out for a drink with a new disciple on Friday, you're welcome to come along if you want. We could invite Danny R too...

Killer said...

What is a prosthetic leg?

anna said...

it's a fake leg when you a have to have your real one chopped off!

DarrenDeliberate said...


This is merely a suggestion but I recommnend not having to have your leg chopped off and then, 'hey presto' no need for that prosthetic leg!

Abi, tell us the story next time you see us, pretty please