Tuesday, 26 November 2019

Dwelling more deeply

Have you seen it yet?

It's selling phenomenally well.

Help someone to deepen their prayer life in 2020 by making them a gift of this new book, 

'Dwelling in the Psalms'.

The psalms are an outpouring of unrestrained emotion to the One who won't be shocked by any of it; to the God who wants to hear it and who wants to be intimately involved in every detail of our lives.  They are prayer of the highest order.  They hold up a mirror to our deepest feelings and that's exactly why they remain so relevant today in this very different time, context and culture from when they were written.  

And that's why people are finding that this new book resonates with them.

If you haven't seen it yet, it's worth a look.
It was a privilege to write it and I'd love you to pray with it.
And it would make a great Christmas gift!
You can find it on Amazon UK and at my online shop.

Saturday, 23 November 2019

A gift for the weary

Ever wished you could step right inside the gospel stories?

Need some help to do that?

Look no further!  The Pathways to Healing series of CDs will enable you to do just that.   Based on scripture, they combine narrative poetry and guided meditation with prayerful questioning and relaxing ambient music.  Our intention is to produce a series of 10 recordings: no 1 in the series is available now, and no 2 will be released in the New Year.

They are CDs to be experienced, quietly, expectantly, deeply; a perfect antidote to the pre-Christmas stresses or a perfect gift for the weary.  And the first has won high praise:
"A wonderful CD! It leads the listener on a journey, touching their deepest fears and worries with peace, forgiveness and the presence of Christ."
Pam Rhodes
"Take Up Your Mat" is a great gift for any Christian friend who needs a bit of a boost.

Available from Amazon UK and my online shop

Take a look now  …  before you forget! 

Sunday, 10 November 2019

Praise for Dwelling in the Psalms

People are saying some lovely things about 'Dwelling in the Psalms'.

This feedback comes from a recently retired chaplain -

"It's such a treasure trove, full of jewels and precious gems; so full of Godly wisdom and truth.  Inspiring. Comforting. Challenging. Thought provoking. Encouraging."
 If you haven't seen it yet, do take a look - 150 contemporary interpretations, devotional reflections and accompanying prayers, based on the entire collection of Psalms.

Available from Amazon UK, my web-shop and all good Christian retailers.

It would make a lovely gift for Christmas; or why not treat yourself?

Wednesday, 16 October 2019

New book! Available now!

My new book is launched today!

A new resource for ministers, churches, retreat houses and individuals. ...  in fact, for anyone who prays!

With an emphasis on healing throughout, the book comprises a contemporary interpretation, devotional reflection and accompanying prayer for each of the 150 Psalms in the Bible.

Available from Amazon, my webshop and all good Christian retailers.

Sunday, 6 October 2019

Dwelling in the Psalms

In 2018 I reflected with the psalms for six months, whilst recovering from major surgery.  Nothing could have prepared me for how my convalescence would change me.  It's impossible to pray the Book of Psalms from start to finish without being significantly impacted by the experience.  I mined their depths and unearthed their treasures.  And I revisited the whole of my life along the way.  I worked through incredible heartache and immense joy, through deep angst and profound gratitude, and through every possible emotion in between.   This new book is the result.

The psalms have taught me their lessons.  I have discovered that some of the most helpful and healing prayers happen when we’re real with God.  Far from being 'unholy', emotions like anger, bitterness, depression and fear can carry us onto holy ground once we express them to God with full force.  And the psalms have taught me much about clinging and singing.  I have learnt the value of clinging to God with tenacious trust through whatever life throws at me.  And as I have pondered, with the psalm writers, on the miracles of history and the wonders of creation, worship and praise has come alive in me.

If you'd like to see the psalms from a fresh perspective you can pre-order the book here: I'll send you a signed copy at a postage-free special offer price of £12.  

It will be in the bookshops from October 17th, priced £12.99.

Saturday, 28 September 2019

All Things Through Christ

Two years ago, the thought of needing two new knees was, to put it mildly, a daunting prospect.  Really?  Do I have to go through this?  Isn't it just a bit of niggly arthritis?  Is there not a simpler solution?  All these and more were the questions I levelled at the surgeon.  His answer, when it came, was emphatic: you need two new artificial knees.

Little did I know then what was to lie ahead.  All I could see were negatives; the things I'd have to cancel, the retreats and conferences I'd no longer be able to participate in, the limitations of recovery, the people I'd be letting down, and the uncertainty of it all.  

I never could have imagined what the fruits of that time would be (apart from a matching pair of metal knees and, hopefully, the ability to walk pain-free!).

So here I am, two months on from the second surgery, and in awe at what's about to be launched: a new book - 'Dwelling in the Psalms'.   In six months, following my first operation, I reflected and prayed with a psalm a day, starting with Psalm 1 and ending at  …  the end!  And Kevin Mayhew have transformed my words into this beautiful book.

In the early days after surgery, when even rising from a chair required the most gargantuan effort, Philippians 4.13 became my mantra:  "I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me".  Not too surprising then that this prayer was birthed as I reflected with Psalm 21 ...

I thank you
for blessing upon blessing
of answered prayers:
I lift my praises to you,
for you have been my strength
in the past
and will be so
in the future.

Keep me
from the temptation
of striving to resolve things
help me
to surrender all my struggles
to you,

Remind me
again, and again,
that I can do all things
through Christ
who strengthens me.     Amen

Could 150 prayers like this help you,
or someone whom you know?  
Would you like to read the associated reflections too?  
And 150 contemporary interpretations of the psalms?  

The book's available to pre-order here and will be in Christian bookshops from October 17th.

'All things through Christ' image credit: AK & Co

Friday, 20 September 2019

Mothering God

Continuing to share some extracts from my forthcoming book, Dwelling in the Psalms, I'm looking today at Psalm 131.  

The psalms are shot through with powerful imagery, some of it brutal, much of it angry, and some of it beautifully tender, as in this psalm:

Lord, my heart is not proud;
my eyes are not haughty.
I don't concern myself with matters too great
or too awesome for me to grasp.
Instead, I have calmed and quieted myself,
like a weaned child who no longer cries for its 
     mother's milk.
Yes, like a weaned child is my soul within me.
                                                                                 Ps. 131:1-2 NLT
It’s hard to think of a more peaceful picture than the image of a young child quietly resting in its mother’s arms. In the early days of life, a baby cries loudly and often for its mother’s milk; it regularly needs the nourishment, the comfort and the reassurance that suckling at the breast gives. In time, the baby grows beyond that stage of its development and anxious crying becomes replaced by a calmer contentment. This simple psalm gives a picture of that quiet contentment; an image of a child who feels safe and satisfied, resting in the presence of one in whom they have absolute trust. They are secure in the arms of one who only has their best interests at heart. It’s a beautiful illustration of the peace and confidence that God wants each of us, his children, to have in him. As Mother Julian famously said, ‘All will be well, and all manner of things shall be well’.
Mothering God,
thank you
for your tender care;
thank you
that in your presence
I am always and forever

Teach me 
each day
to live as your child,
to rest in your arms
and to let you
hold me through life.

And should I be afraid,
quieten my soul.