Sunday, 21 December 2008


N.B. I've imported the important blogs over to this one and deleted my other blog... it was getting too confusing having two at once. Please bear with me as I edit and re-tag all of my entries to fall in line with this blog style... though I doubt any of you are sad enough to actually read my old entries, or even have any interest what-so-ever in what I have to say...

... I didn't think so.

So this week I've been really ill. And screwed up emotionally. And yet, I've actually had more time this month to hang out with the people I care about, because let's face it, most of the things I class as "work" aren't actually work for me anymore. They are just things I go to - part of normal life. Things I used to attend just as much when I was in Brentwood, only now, they count as work. I'm finding the line between work and normal work ever increasing blurry and indeterminate these days. Who knows.

I've suddenly realised how quickly I lost the people I thought would stick around in my life forever. Because now, apart from the odd text or facebook wall message, they play no part in the life I've been living for the last two years. They don't even really know who I am, and the person I've become. And that makes me quite sad actually. I have so many awesome memories of the last few years, and looking back through my old blogs, I can see how much life has changed for me, and yet, the people who back then, I wanted to share my entire life with, barely even share in ten minutes of my life now. And to be honest, that sucks. And it also scares me. Are the people that mean the world to me now, only going to be in my life once every few months in a few years time? Am I going to have to start all over again in a few years time, only to lose those friends as well? Because if I am, what is the point of all this?

*sigh* I don't know. Why is it that so many things take me back to that place that I don't want to be? So many triggers, so many bad memories. All consuming, mind altering triggers that snap be back to that inner churning, stomach turning darkness. I don't really want to admit it, but I'm scared. I don't want to be trapped there.

"God, I'm in this place again,
I'm trying so hard not to fall,
But everything keeps coming down with the rain.
And I try so hard, I forget to call.
Everybodys looking around, and wants to be found.
And I'm just hanging on; I give You all that I am."
'Hanging On' - Everyday Sunday

Thursday, 18 December 2008


N.B. How I wish I had wings that I could escape these cold endless nights. To escape this situation and to start afresh in a new world, with a new horizon that calls to me each evening. Oh, how I long sometimes to live in the sunset.

I really don't cope very well when this feeling comes upon me so suddenly. It catches me unaware and I can't act quick enough to stop it taking me over. And if I don't catch it in time, or have someone to distract me, then we just repeat ourselves. It sits in my stomach, not allowing me to eat or sleep, and slowly tears apart my sanity, emotion by emotion, until I give in. Sometimes, my life seems to be nothing but an endless circle of bad feelings, mistakes and regrets.

"Saw the world turning in my sheets and once again I cannot sleep.
Walk out the door and up the street;
Look at the stars beneath my feet.
Remember rights that I did wrong, so here I go.
Hello, hello. There is no place I cannot go.
My mind is muddy but my heart is heavy. Does it show?
I lose the track that loses me, so here I go.
And so I sent some men to fight,
And one came back at dead of night.
Said he'd seen my enemy.
Said he looked just like me,
So I set out to cut myself and here I go.

I'm not calling for a second chance,
I'm screaming at the top of my voice.
Give me reason but don't give me choice.
'Cause I'll just make the same mistake again.
And maybe someday we will meet,
And maybe talk and not just speak.
Don't buy the promises 'cause,
There are no promises I keep.
And my reflection troubles me, so here I go."
'Same Mistake' - James Blunt

Thursday, 11 December 2008


N.B. I was not at all well yesterday morning and ended up spending the majority of the day in bed. It's certainly no fun being ill when you ain't got a lovely Mummy to look after you, I'll say!

I have been wondering a lot lately. About a lot of things, not even one thing in particular. It's coming up to Christmas, and been thinking back on childhood memories and experiences of past Christmasses. It's nearly January, and a New Year, so been thinking about the things that 2008 brought to me, and the changes that have occurred in my life throughout the year. Its almost at that terrifying time of year when I have to decide what I want to do next year, or rather, what God wants and where I will end up. It's nearly 2009. What a scary thought!

Most of all though, I have been wondering an awful lot about how much I have changed over the last year and a half/ since I started life down here in Southend. So much has gone on, so much has moulded and guided and crushed me into this person I have become. And so far, I'm not overly sure how much I've been aware of it's going on. I know that people often tell me that I've grown loads in the last year, and yes, there are aspects of my life that I can visibly see the changes in me. But there are so many other things, little things, that I am aware have not-so-much changed, but have been allowed to mature and grow, because I have given them a chance to come out into the open: parts of my personality that are not hindered by shyness and lack of self-esteem and self-loathing. I have gained control, albeit loosely, on some of those negative emotions that threaten to overtake me, and so most of the time now, I am partly free of them, and they no longer dictate my every move.

I have learnt so much about God in my 16 months working for Him, not just knowledge and understanding of the Bible and it's truth and message, but also about God himself. His character and attitude towards me, and not in the least, the unexplainable, unimaginable magnitude of his love and faithfulness that are renewed to me every morning, because I worship and adore a loving, faithful God, who knows me intimately and holds me close to his heart.

I mentioned a few months ago that I was experiencing a real sense of 'travelling into the darkness' and I would not say that I have yet come out the other side. I know that there is so much more that God wants to "do with me" whilst I am vulnerable and allowing Him to do so. However, no matter how dark the night gets, I know the faithfulness of God's provision for me, and so I am contented with being here. I am fully aware that there are struggles I have yet to experience, because life is an ongoing journey, and I am still travelling it. But the moments of God's bright stars that break through the darkness are constant and powerful, and so I remain stengthened and rested in His presence. And despite the chaos and unpredicatableness of the things sometimes going on in my head, I strive to allow God to mould me, and to answer and comfort all the questions and fears that lie in the pit of that darkness.

So yes, I have been wondering a lot lately. Or should I say, wandering....

When peace, like a river, attendeth my way,
When sorrows like sea billows roll;
Whatever my lot, Thou has taught me to say,
It is well, it is well, with my soul.
Horatio G Spafford, 1873

Monday, 1 December 2008


N.B. Reflection on Romans 12 v 1-21. What an amazing book. (Yes, I say that about all of Paul's letters.) But this is what I strive for, this is how I want to live. And sure, I'm never going to get there, because I have sinned, and I fall short of God's glory, by a long shot. But I am justified freely through the redemption that comes through faith in Christ Jesus, thanks be to God.

"I'm taking my everyday, ordinary life — my sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life — and placing it before God as an offering. I'm not going to become so well-adjusted to my culture that I fit into it without even thinking. Instead, I'm fixing my attention on God. I'll be changed from the inside out. I'll try to readily recognize what He wants from me, and quickly respond to it.

Living in pure grace, I'm know I'm not bringing this goodness to God. God brings it all to me. The only accurate way to understand life is by what God is and by what He does for me, not by what I am and what I do for him.

I'm trying to be what I was made to be, without enviously or pridefully comparing myself to someone else, or by being something I'm not. I'm not the whole picture, my life is part of God's infinite plan. When I preach, I will preach God's message, nothing else. When I help, I will help with a servant heart. When I work with the disadvantaged, I won't let myself get irritated or depressed by them. I will keep a smile on my face. I will love from the center of who I am, I won't fake it.

I will run from evil, and cling dear to good. I will be a good friend who loves dearly, and put others before myself. I'll keep myself fueled and aflame so I won't burn out. I'll be an alert servant of the Master, cheerfully expectant. I won't quit in hard times, but will pray all the harder.

I will help needy Christians, and practise hospitality, feeding those I meet who are hungry, and giving a drink to those who thirst. I'll bless my enemies, and give up cursing under my breath. I'll share laughter with my friends when they are happy, and tears when they are down. I will try and get along with everyone, and make friends with the nobodies without making myself a big somebody. I'll learn not to hit back, but instead discover beauty in everyone. I'll let God do the judging, and just try to get along with people. I'll try not to let evil get the best of me, but overcome that evil with good works. By the grace of the Lord God, through whom all things are held together."

Friday, 28 November 2008


N.B. *Contains strong opinions* Anyone else been watching 'I'm A Celebrity...'? Normally I quite enjoy watching it, but this series of Celebrities are really beginning to grind my teeth.

There are not many things that really anger me, but this one really has created such a deep sense of injustice and annoyance that it's being embedded in my stomach right now. Sitting down to watch TV this evening, I ended up watching 'I'm A Celebrity, Get Me Out Of Here!' and was watching the way the celebrities constantly complained of hunger and not having enough to eat. And to be honest, I was quite glad. Maybe after experiencing it for themselves, they might be more wary of so many of the world that experience that everyday, without the thought that it'll all be over in a few weeks.

However, nothing annoyed me more than hearing David Van Day moan on and on about not have cake or champagne for his birthday, and how no-one seemed to care that it was his birthday. He got all annoyed because Brian and Esther didn't destroy 1000 potatoes to win a luxury box - they said they didn't do it because it was wasteful of the potatoes. He said that they obviously didn't care it was his birthday and had a little tantrum. Just shut up! No, I don't care that it's your birthday, because you're not that special, so get over yourself! Eurgh! That annoyed me.

Why does nobody seem to care? Why are people so immune to the suffering that goes on day after day after day? Why is it that massive things, like the Tsunami and 9/11 get so much media coverage, but everyday death and starvation and suffering go unnoticed? Won't anybody listen?

Thursday, 20 November 2008


N.B. It's actually beginning to hurt more and more as each day goes by. Somebody just take me home. :(

Just thought I would share a gem of humour from one of my lovely girlies this afternoon.

Lauren: I think I'm psychic!
Phil: What am I thinking?
Lauren: I'm a weirdo?
Phil: Wow! That was amazing!
Ami: Okay, okay, what am I thinking?
Lauren: How should I know!

And I always thought boys said silly things...

Tuesday, 18 November 2008


N.B. This is pretty much what I preached on Sunday, although obviously, I have changed it a little bit to fit with it being posted on a blog as opposed to spoken in church. The service was all about being the body of Christ, and the young people did so well, bless them. I loved seeing how much they have all grown and changed since I started working with them last September, as many have commented on my development since I started working here. For sure... I would not have been preaching last September.

"We are the body of Christ. We are the Church. We are a group of people travelling together. We are men, women and children of all ages, races and societies supporting one another on our long, and often tiring journeys to our final home. When we share together in communion, eating and drinking the bread and wine, we become that one body. Through the visible, outward sign of the inner grace we experience, we become more than a team, a group or even a fellowship. We become the one body of Christ, the Living Lord, present in the world.

The church is holy, and sinful. It is spotless and it is tainted. The church is the bride of Christ, washed in cleansing water and made one with Him. The church too, is a group of sinful, confused and anguished people constantly tempted by the powers of lust and greed and always entangled in rivalry and competition. When we say that the church is a body, and we too, are part of that, we refer not only to the Holy and faultless body made Christ-like through baptism and communion, but also to the broken bodies of all the people who are its members.

The church is that unlikely body of people through whom God chooses to reveal His love for us. Just as it seems unlikely to many people that God chose to become human using a young girl living in a small, not very respected town in the Middle East over 2000 years ago, it seems even more unlikely to a whole lot more people that God chose to continue His work of salvation in a community of people constantly torn apart by arguments, prejudices, authority conflicts and power games.

In the past the Church has made enough mistakes. We have a history of violence and controversy, judgement and manipulation of people and ideas, as well as constantly recurring divisions to overcome before we can begin to spread the message that Christ has set in our hearts. We need to believe that despite the flaws of every single one of us, as Christ’s body we carry in our centre the Word of God and God’s healing love. In the midst of our human brokenness, the Church needs to present the broken body of Christ to the world as food for eternal life! Because in a world where sin is abundant, grace is superabundant, and where promises are broken over and again, God’s promise stands unshaken.

The grace of God, overspills, flowing further and wider and deeper than the sin that so easily entangles each part of us, as broken members of one body. But by putting Jesus at the centre of our lives, we can gather together and become one whole body, spotless and Holy. Through one spirit and one baptism, we gather together with one hope, and Christ’s one sacrifice is enough! When we have faith that Jesus lives within us, we realise that he also lives among us and makes us into a body of people witnessing together to the presence of Christ in this world.

Every single one of us needs God’s grace. Our children and young people need to learn about it, the people out there in our town, country and world need to hear about it. And just as much, every single one of us needs to accept it. Every single one of us can have God’s grace. It is not something we can earn - it is a gift that we receive. Not because of the good things we may have done, but because of Christ’s love for us. That he died, and he poured out his blood, and washed our broken and sinful bodies clean.

Grace is a gift that when realised and accepted, changes lives. God’s grace is completely sufficient, because he pours it upon our heads day after day after day. He showers us with love and acceptance every time we realise it. It conquers our insecurities, and it wipes the stain of our sin from our lives. So that we can stand and say we are members of Christ’s body. There will be people who need to accept the grace that God is offering to them today. Maybe for the first time, maybe for the hundreth time. Because no matter how many times in the past you have screwed it up and made mistakes, God is offering you his forgiveness. You just have to decide whether or not to take it."

"Just as our bodies have many parts and each part has a special function, so it is with Christ’s body. We are many parts of one body, and we all belong to each other. In his grace, God has given us different gifts for doing certain things well. So if God has given you the ability to prophesy, speak out with as much faith as God has given you."
Romans 12:4-6 [NLT]

Tuesday, 4 November 2008


Last night at Kids Klub, during the quieter, more God-oriented slot at the beginning, a rather confident 5-year-old called Billy prayed the best prayer I've heard in ages. Well, Jesus did say that "out of the mouths of babes and sucklings, thou hast perfected praise..."

"Dear Jesus, I think I really like you.
I hope you will come see us soon...

Monday, 3 November 2008


N.B. No, this is not about the band, but rather, the situation of utter calm that is present in the midst of chaos; oh, will someone tell me where the last two months have gone?

So things have been busy lately, to say the least. Holiday Club came and went, all that time I thought I had to prepare for the youth service has shrunk to just under two weeks, and it's Christmas in just 51 days (my sister's baby is due in just 46 days???) and I haven't even started thinking about it! Time seems to fly when you are having fun or working for a church, apparently. So yeah, September and October seem to have flown by amongst everything that's been going on, and with that has been a great deal of stress, anxieties and worries about a number of different situations, involving and affecting me directly or indirectly.

But looking back on all of that time, I can clearly see that amongst all the chaos that seems to have been going on are a number of situations in which I have experienced God, in fullness of silence and serenity. When the presence of God has cut through the raw and dishevelled harshness of my thoughts and emotions, and brought me a much higher understanding of what I am going through, even if I don't know why. A peace that surpasses understanding, a quiet oasis in the midst of complete devestation and wilderness, a calming breeze in the storms of life: this I have found in my God.

Not suprisingly, a number of those situations arose from conversations I have had with the children I have been working with. It's holiday club during the half-term week, the theme this year being "What's Up Doc?" with a real focus on Psalm 139, and the way God has made each of us in an amazing and special way. And a lot of the teaching was hard hitting, and intentionally so. It is so important for children of that age to know that they are special and that they are loved. To know a positive identity in themselves and in the person they are. Because I know how much will affect them in later life if they do not realise it now.

"I praise you because I am
fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful,
I know that full well."
Psalm 139: 14

Thursday, 30 October 2008


N.B. At the Praise and Healing Service a few weeks ago, I was experiencing a real numbness of heart, towards God and my own relationship with him. At that moment in time, I felt I could do nothing else but pray for other people. And I did, in all earnesty and sincerity, pray for some people that are dear to my heart, and needing of some real intervention. But never in those moments could I contemplate restoring God's faithfulness to my own heart, and I left the service feeling two things: that God had the power to change things, and that He wanted nothing to do with me. A complete thought contradiction, I know, but that's how I was feeling.

During the service, Phil used the following prayer. And although at the time, I was not in the right state of mind, (or perhaps this was why) I felt the pit of fear building in my stomach as we prayed this as an entire congregation. But when I got home, I prayed it again, by myself in the stillness, and have been praying it ever since.

My soul waits for the Lord
more than those who watch for the morning.
Out of the depths I have cried to You.
O Lord, hear my voice.
With my whole heart I want to praise You.
O Lord, hear my voice.
If you, Lord, should mark iniquities
Who could stand? who could stand?
I will wait for the Lord.
My soul waits, and in His word do I hope.

Lord, You have always given bread for the coming day;
and though I am poor, today I believe.
Lord, You have always given strength for the coming day;
and though I am weak, today I believe.
Lord, You have always given peace for the coming day;
and though of anxious heart, today I believe.
Lord, You have always kept me safe in trials;
and now, tried as I am, today I believe.
Lord, You have always marked the road for the coming day;
and though it may be hidden, today I believe.
Lord, You have always lightened this darkness of mine;
and though the night is here, today I believe.
Lord, You have always spoken when time was ripe;
and though you be silent now, today I believe.

Thursday, 23 October 2008


N.B. Have you ever seen the film, The Secret Garden? I used to watch it a lot as a kid.

Quick background info here: In the film, Mary, a young girl who doesn't know how to cry, is sent to live with her reclusive uncle after losing her parents in an earthquake in India. Whilst staying at his house, she discovers her bedridden, "crippled" cousin, Colin, hidden away from the world. She also finds a secret garden that is present somewhere in the middle of a vast array of gardens, but no-one knows how to get into it, because the door is locked and hidden. Having found a key hidden in her deceased aunt's room, Mary retrieves it and eventually finds the door to unlock it. She enters the garden, but everything looks dead and unkempt.

After sharing this secret with her new friend Dickon, he informs her that the garden is very much alive. It just needs seeds to grow and a bit of love and attention. The same is true with Colin. She eventually manages to get him outside, into the garden, and between the three of them, the garden becomes a place of healing for the girl, and eventually for her uncle and cousin who are still grieving the loss of their mother/wife. Colin learns to walk, her uncle learns to laugh, and Mary learns to cry.

I feel like my life recently has very much been twining through these series of events. I know that there is a secret garden down inside of me, and I have found the key. Maybe, amongst it all, I have even found the door as well. But entering through it, and looking around at all things that right now, look dead and unkempt, is a process I am struggling through. I am in the winter of my garden, when things need to die and fall away to make space for the new things to grow once more in the spring. The time when seeds sleep beneath the surface in the dampened darkness. The time when the earth is hard to break, and the cold mist settles harshly on the ground. But, like all winters, it will not last forever. The spring will come, and life will spring up once more. The emptiness of the winter will fall away as the bright colours bloom across the ground. The trees will grow leaves, and fresh shoots will grow up into the light. I know that eventually, God will bring healing to this place. And maybe then, I will learn to cry once more.

Thursday, 16 October 2008


N.B. Sometimes you just can't find the words to describe how you feel, and that feeling inside eats away at you day by day. Sometimes, it takes so much just to look up, and see the caring eyes that are watching you. Sometimes it takes more strength to admit you're struggling, than to battle on through single-handedly. But in all times He is near. And this I know: my God is faithful.

"At this, Job got up and tore his robe and shaved his head. Then he fell to the ground in worship and said:

"Naked I came from my mother's womb,
and naked I will depart.
The LORD gave and the LORD has taken away;
may the name of the LORD be praised."
Job 1: 20 - 21

Sunday, 12 October 2008


N.B. Looking back on what I was thinking about this time last year I was surprised to find that it is almost identical to what I have been thinking about for the last few days. I would encourage you to read my old blog from back then, and also others that I have written, as I often find reading back helps me to relearn lessons that I have forgotten.

These last few days I have been thinking about togetherness. There is a great video that Phil has shown in church a few times about Rick and Dick Hoyt who complete so much more together than could on their own. It's a great example of what I'm trying to rediscover. I love the thought of me and a certain seven-year-old walking anywhere together. Because there will always come a point on our journey (or perhaps, even before we set out) when he will ask for 'shoulders' or a piggy-back. Sometimes it is because he is tired and can't walk anymore, but mostly he just wants a free ride, or the acknowledgement that he's still small enough and I'm still strong enough to do it. And 99% of the time, I oblige, because it's quite sweet when he asks, and its a bond that we share.

We are all on a journey. (How many times have I blogged that, this year?) But we are not on this journey alone - or rather, we can all choose not to travel it alone. There are people around us every day, whom we can share this journey with, and likewise, we must make time ourselves to share in journeys with other people. And there are times on our journey when we need to ask someone for that reminder that they are ready to support us when we are too tired to carry on, just like we, in turn, must support them in their weaknesses.

This morning, Rev. Pete Tom preached about the good reasons why it is important for christians to meet with someone in which to share and learn. I myself have experienced the goodness of one-to-one fellowship and really grown as a result of that, so I appreciated what he was saying. But there was one little bit which really stuck with me from this morning, which I shall quote loosely here:

"There are things you are prepared to share one-to-one which you would never share, even in a small group. You can feel amazingly safe. Going on a journey into unknown territory: it always feels better to share that adventure with someone else, rather than going there by yourself, especially if the other person has been there before."
[p21 - 'Making Disciples One-To-One, Peter Thomas © 2008]

I guess what I'm trying to say is this: [after three hours of attempting to write this blog...] We all have a choice. And actually, it is a choice we must think very seriously about. As followers of Christ, we must strive to be like him in all aspects of our lives. Jesus had friends and disciples to share his journey with him, and even as He was crucified, He had a man on either side sharing in his pain, anguish and torment, and many more watching from afar, mourning and grieving him. But they all, in one way or another, learnt something from sharing the journey with him - either by something he did or said, or something he didn't do or say. And He, in turn, was moved/affected by the people he met and talked to. (Lets face it, it wouldn't be much of a gospel message if Jesus just wandered about in the desert for three years...)

Like my seven-year-old friend, we mustn't be afraid to ask someone when we need a bit of help to carry on, or maybe just someone to make us feel that little less alone. Because, if we really need it, where does not asking leave us? Don't be embarrassed to say, 'Hey, I'm feeling a bit pants. Give us a hand, yeah?' Because if they are able to help, and you are helped, then that's what is really important. And hey, you are always welcome to drop me an email/comment if you really are desperate for a friend, cause I can always do with one more. :)

Ahh. I think I'm finished. This has got to be worthy of a comment or two by the people that read this - I've spent over three hours trying to work out what I'm trying to say, I at least deserve to know whose read it!


I've had a great weekend at home with my family. And catching up with some really good friends. I was settled and disturbed by a service at my home church, having realised some things change really quickly and some things just don't. Ahh well. :)

I bought a Tagalog phrase book. (Filipino national language) It's awesome. Well looking forward to learning to say some more interesting things than 'your face looks like an egg' which really doesn't come up in conversation all that often. Hehe.

Meh. Run out of non-preachy things to say, so good morning, good afternoon and good night!

Thursday, 9 October 2008


N.B. [This is very closely tied in with my last entry, please read them both with an attitude of understanding.] I wish I could cry sometimes.

This was the passage that they shared as Robin’s favourite verse last Wednesday. I thought it appropriate to share it with you now.

I love the Lord because he hears my voice and my prayer for mercy.
Because he bends down to listen,
I will pray as long as I have breath!
Death wrapped its ropes around me;
the terrors of the grave overtook me.
I saw only trouble and sorrow.

Then I called on the name of the Lord:
“Please, Lord, save me!”
How kind the Lord is! How good he is!
So merciful, this God of ours!
The Lord protects those of childlike faith;
I was facing death, and he saved me.
Let my soul be at rest again, for the Lord has been good to me.
He has saved me from death, my eyes from tears,
My feet from stumbling.
And so I walk in the Lord’s presence as I live here on earth!

I believed in you, so I said, “I am deeply troubled, Lord.”
In my anxiety I cried out to you, “These people are all liars!”
What can I offer the Lord for all he has done for me?
I will lift up the cup of salvation and praise the Lord’s name for saving me.
I will keep my promises to the Lord in the presence of all his people.
The Lord cares deeply when his loved ones die.

O Lord, I am your servant; yes, I am your servant,
Born into your household; you have freed me from my chains.
I will offer you a sacrifice of thanksgiving and call on the name of the Lord.
I will fulfil my vows to the Lord in the presence of all his people—
in the house of the Lord in the heart of Jerusalem.

Praise the Lord!

I don’t know about you, but this passage really challenged me when I first read it through. Can we really commit to praising God when things are hard? Do we really say, “God is good!” when we feel only pain? I was planning a worship slot for Optimum-Weds when I came across this passage in a book a friend has only recently given me. I was trying to write a whole blog on this revelation that I have been experiencing firsthand in the last few weeks, but I thought that this section of the book actually speaks it a lot better than I could manage to:

"A while back I wrote a song called, ‘When The Tears Fall’. It was written at a time when life for me was hard. I’d taken a few knocks and suddenly my heart was filled with questions and doubt. One evening, feeling very low, I sat down and started pouring out my heart to God. The first line I sang out was, ‘I’ve had questions without answers. I’ve known sorrow, I have known pain.’ Immediately, I looked for a response. How do you follow a line like that? Well the answer is, look to Jesus. Everyone on this earth experiences pain, suffering, bereavement and illness. The only difference is that for those who believe that Jesus is Lord, we have a Saviour we can turn to and cling to.

But there’s one thing that I’ll cling to;
you are faithful Jesus, you’re true.

As I sang out of my pain and doubt, my soul found rest in Jesus. At first I concluded this was a personal song only for my own use. However, the more I pondered it, I began to realise that the sentiment and theme of this song was just as worshipful as any other; for there has to be a place for pain in the Church.

We need a bigger picture of what worship is. Questioning God doesn’t mean we are disobeying Him. Expressing doubt doesn’t mean we are lacking faith. In our everyday living, the people we’re most likely to share our deepest fears and questions with are those we most love and trust. It’s an intimate thing to be honest and raw with someone. It’s something that draws you closer to a friend. Expressing anger and pain in worship can actually be a beautiful, intimate thing. Dan Allender says,

"Lament cuts through insincerity, strips pretense, and reveals the raw nerve of trust that angrily approaches the throne and then kneels in awed, robust wonder...”

It’s easy to praise when everything is going according to plan. It’s more of a challenge when everything around us is falling to pieces. It takes great faith to say, ‘You are Good’ when life is incredibly hard. But God is good and forever worthy of our praise. This is not dependant on our feelings. Day and night, always the same, God deserves our highest praise.

We will find great comfort and healing in the Church by allowing space to be honest and real about how we really feel. To allow questions and doubts to rise, but in that place, to respond to God by worshipping His holy name"

"I will praise you, I will praise you
When the tears fall, still I will sing to you.
I will praise you, Jesus praise you
Through the suffering, still I will sing."

[Quote taken from "Inside Out Worship; by Matt Redman and Friends]

Wednesday, 8 October 2008


N.B. I guess it is in the darkness that the stars shine their brightest. I attempt here to lay down the things that I have been clinging to this week.

Last week I attended the celebration service of Robin Bose, who was a dear husband, father, uncle, brother and son to some very amazing people. The service was a beautiful tribute to someone who lived life to the full, grasping each moment as precious and leaving a legacy that will be held dear in many years to come. As members of his family spoke about what they remember him for, and shared the dear memories they had of Robin, I found myself connecting with their pain and sharing in their grief; and even though I did not have the privilege of knowing Robin personally, I was greatly affected by his attitude and spirit for life that was so apparent through their words.

I was inspired by his faithfulness to God, despite impending suffering and a realisation of death, his fighting determination to believe in his ultimate reward in heaven, no matter what troubles he would encounter here on earth. His favourite psalm was Psalm 116, a song of praise about God saving someone from their desperate place of suffering. To read those words, in the light of knowing Robin’s story, was amazing. What a testament to one man’s faithfulness to God!

We all experience hard times. None of us are exempt from suffering, it has no favourites. It affects the richest and the poorest, the foreigner and the native, the free man and the slave, the old and the young. But each of us has a choice in our times of trial. In those darkest nights, do we keep our heads down and lurk amongst the shadows. Or do we turn our faces skyward, and look for the stars? If you have ever had the patience and the endurance to lay out under the vast blanket of darkness and wait for your eyes to adjust, you may have seen a shooting star. They are not common, but they are ultimately beautiful, lasting only a few seconds, and yet they shine brighter than all the other stars.

When we experience difficult times, there will be people around us who will be affected by the way we choose to deal with things. There are people in our lives who look to us, who learn from us, as we do from them. We are all affected by the people in our lives who we are close to us, and some of us are affected by people who don’t even know our name. I love the Orange adverts that talk about the different people in someone’s life that have made them the person they are today. There are many people in my life that I have paid tribute to. Some know what they have meant to me, some don’t, and some never will. Some of those people are my close friends and family, some are people I have met. A select few are people, like Robin, whose time in my life lasted only a few seconds. And yet, they are sometimes the people who shine the brightest.

And one of those people is Jesus. He was someone who cared so much to be in my life, that he gave his own. When I read Psalm 116 now, it means so much more to be, because of the memory of Robin that lives on in my mind. And it inspires me to look up, and to see where my hope lies. God is good. Can you see it?

No matter what we’ve been through in our past, it is a testament to God’s faithfulness that we are here. We have made it to this moment, this time. No matter how fleeting our experience with God may have been, He wants to meet us in this moment. He wants to uphold us in his love. He wants to forgive us of the things we have done wrong. He wants to shower us with love and mercy. He wants to lavish his grace upon us. He wants to dry our tears and heal our wounds. We just need to have the patience and the endurance to lay out beneath the vast blanket of darkness and allow our eyes to adjust. The shooting stars are there.

Saturday, 4 October 2008


N.B. I've had a really rewarding week, although, struggling through it, I don't think I realised it so much at the time. There have been so many times when I have felt, what? What are you doing God? But I guess that is the art of reflecting back on what God's been doing. You can appreciate the small things that you didn't realise were going on at the time. I guess that's all I ever do on this blog really. Hope you don't mind. :)

A really close friend of mine, wrote this on his blog recently:

"The thing about flying is you have to jump off the ledge. In order to glide upwards on the currents and eddies you must hurl yourself headlong into the abyss and believe that underneath are the everlasting arms.
A mother eagle does not teach her chicks to fly bit by bit. She simply kicks them out of the nest. Often God is more gentle with us, but often He wants us to do our bit of the growing too."

When I read that, I was blown away by how much it was speaking into my life, and teaching me a lesson that I now realise God really wanted me to learn. To jump off the edge occasionally, instead of constantly being shoved, kicking and screaming the whole way. Recently, I had a few deep conversations with people in which I have expressed my concern for returning to the "abyss" from which I have come, (not my words.) It's something me and God have been fighting over for a good month or so now, and so far I had been resisting, petrified and unsure of what would result. But when I read Matt's blog in the light of the conversation I had had, I realised that this was something God was really serious about me doing. It was time to hurl myself headlong into it, as Matt puts it, and just trust that God wouldn't let me fall too far. Rather, He would uphold me and sustain me at the right point, until the time was right.

So that's what I've been doing, and ya know, its not too bad down here. A tad lonely at times, but I guess that's no more so than normal. And I'm learning, from the darkness. And I'm appreciating the small snippets of light that shine through to me. And although I don't fully understand why I'm here, and how long this will last, I am trying to make the most of it. Life was never supposed to be easy. So I have no complaints, Praise God.

Thursday, 2 October 2008


N.B. This has been a strange kind of week for me, and probably for a good few around me. But the more I reflect back on it, the more I appreciate the need for the world to hear about Jesus, and to know his love and acceptance for themselves. To experience it in all its fullness and truth, to live it in my words and actions, to "love it out" in the everyday people that I meet. So much of the time recently, I have been experiencing for myself a personal darkness. But in that, I am learning to appreciate the magnificence of the dawn, and the hope that Jesus brings of salvation. I learn to stand by my friends, and to be sensitive and tolerant towards them in their pain, and to put my troubles in perspective with theirs. And maybe most importantly, I learn to look up when I need to be looking up, and trust whole-heartedly in the God who has my best interests at heart.

This is a quote that is painted on the roof of the counselling hut in my old senior school. I always thought it had beautiful words, but maybe never realised how much so until now.

"I said to the man who stood at the gate of the year
'Give me a light that I may tread safely into the unknown.'

And he replied,
'Go into the darkness and put your hand into the hand of God
That shall be to you better than light and safer than a known way!'

So I went forth and finding the Hand of God
Trod gladly into the night
He led me towards the hills
And the breaking of day in the lone east.

So heart be still!
What need our human life to know
If God hath comprehension?

In all the dizzy strife of things
Both high and low,
God hideth his intention."

Minnie Louise Harkins 1875-1957

Tuesday, 30 September 2008


N.B. I was shifting back through some things I had written on an internet forum, and I came across this. I wrote it back in March, I think, and just was encouraged to see what I started out doing this for.

"Working within the church is great. I've met a lot of awesome people, people I can talk to, be open with, share stuff with, and also learn from. Older people that have seen a fair bit more of the world, have learnt lessons the hard way, have made the mistakes, and have run a bit more of the race. Sometimes, life gets hard. I'm only a young'un, and there are only a few here my age that I can socialise with (not that I have many evenings in a week to socialise... or the money to do so...) When most my age are off at Uni, partying, making friends, being independant, doing what they want and somewhere along the way getting essays in before the deadline, I have a responsibility. To the church. To the kids and young people I work with. To myself, and to God. I have to be places at a certain time, prepared. I spend a lot of the time on show. So even when its been a crappy day, if there is a kid about, I have to hide that as best as I can. I guess I'm used to that nowadays though.

Sometimes, I feel like giving up. When I'm tired, and I've spent 4 hours preparing a bible study session, and then I don't actually get to do it because the kids are messing around, its frustrating. When I have to spend hours at church, night after night, or haven't slept well or at all, and still get up early enough to get to the school on time for the assembly, or somewhere for a meeting, or to church to prepare for the service, I feel like throwing in the towel. I am constantly being challenged to do things I find really hard, things I find difficult to cope with. Things that had I a choice, I would not come within twenty thousand miles of doing. But amongst all that - is the chance to change lives. Is the chance to make an impact on a young persons world.

I've had a passion for youth work since the age of about 15. At my home church, I was heavily involved in the kids work - for some reason kids just seem to take to me really quickly. Even the difficult ones seem to like me! (Which is a surprise to me most of the time!) And I owe a lot of where I am now to my youth worker. He changed my life dramatically when I hit rock bottom, and I have been given the chance to do the same for the young people I work with. Yes, life is hard sometimes, damn hard, but when a young person comes to you with a problem because they only trust you, and you have the chance to demonstrate the love and care of Christ to that young person, it makes it all worth while. When a crying child runs to you for comfort - you know that they need you.

I've overcome a few random struggles in my life. And I know from experience that when people go through stuff, they often wonder why God brought that hardship into their life, why they have been made to struggle or deal with a difficult issue. But if you stick with it, and stick with God, somewhere along the journey, you realise why, and begin to see how God's plan in your life is not always the things that you had in mind.

I had a conversation with a young girl of 9 years old the other night. She was upset because she didn't see her Dad much because he worked a lot and she missed him. As we chatted, she confided in me that she didn't think her Mum loved her because she shouted at her all the time. Just chatting some things through with her made me learn from my own experiences. Talking things through with her, I was able to be the one to explain that actually, no matter how her Mum acted, she did love her, and her Dad too! She left feeling slightly more settled about her relationship with her parents (I hope!)

And sometimes, it is those little things, that text to a young person who has had a bad week, that smile to say, "I'm happy you're here", that conversation that says, 'I'm interested in you', it is those small things that make the biggest impact on the lives of the young people in whom I invest my time. Just making the effort, goes a long way when a young person realises you made the effort just for them. And through building those relationships, strengthened by the small things we do day in and day out, comes the real everyday experiences of Christ.

And that is why I get up every morning. And why I go to work even when I am feeling crappy. Each of my young people has an awesome life ahead of them. And some of them will walk it with God, and some will fight him all the way. But if through my ministry they might learn something of the gracious love that upholds them and sustains them, then I'll be satisfied that I did my job as God willed it."

Ami Wager [March 08]

Monday, 29 September 2008


N.B. I have been finding it rather difficult to sleep these last few weeks, falling back into old sleeping patterns and ways of thinking.

Since returning to work from the summer break, I have been learning more and more about myself, how I react to things, and how I adapt and change in every situation that I feel unable to cope in. I have been challenged by a number of peoples' questions and enquiries, and left many a conversation feeling glad for sharing a bit more of myself than I normally do.

Phil’s sermon on Sunday evening was based on the first part of Romans, the very first part, and he talked about who Paul was as a person, and who he saw himself as. As part of that, he quoted the film, ‘Hook’ when Wendy says to Peter, “Don’t you know who you are?” He posed this question to the congregation, who of course just murmured back a response.

But, due to the circumstances I mentioned earlier, this question hit me hard. Recently, it is all I have been thinking about. What makes me who I am? What am I defined by? I know that my identity is found ultimately in Christ, that is not what I am talking about. I am talking about on earth, this very second, I am completely unable to define who I am as a person. I don't know why, and I don't know when this realisation occurred. But I know that I have it. A complete incomprehensible illiteracy for reading who I am.

*sigh* You don't really understand what I'm going on about do you? Okay. So, erm.... I guess the only way to really explain it is this:

"Too many nights I have waited for darkness to cover me.
Too many dawns I have burned in my mind.
I don't know who I am, or where I am going.
No matter how much I laugh and smile, inside I'm broken.
It's a pain deeper than anything I've ever known before.
When I cry, I feel like the world is falling apart.
And when I write it all the darkness in me comes out.
Sometimes I stay awake all night just to avoid the nightmares.
When you leave me alone, I feel completely isolated.
When you don't talk to me, I feel abandoned and rejected.
But I believe it's because I am not good enough.
So I wear a mask to hide how much it hurts inside.
And most of the time it works because I don't let you look in my eyes.
I can't control how I'm feeling.
And I can't explain why I feel sad.
But I want nothing more than to feel like I am worth something.
And to know that you like me for who I am, not what I do.
I wish I had better words to describe how I'm feeling.
But to be honest, I really don't understand myself right now."

Thursday, 25 September 2008


N.B. I've not been feeling too settled lately. Maybe you know that, maybe you don't care, but I just wanted to apologise in advance if my blogs seem a bit... off, over the coming weeks. And hey, feel free to comment to let me know I'm not alone here.

I was at Training today, and there came a point when I found myself just staring out of the massive great window that is seated on either side of the barn. And as I thought about all manner of things, that verse that talks about us being of the world, or in the world came into my head (and I don't even really know what it means.) But I know that so often, I will look out of this window and watch those outside enjoying the beauty of the sun and surroundings, and wish I were in it.

During lunchtime I took a walk/run with God, and trudged to the top of "the mound". When I got there, I just shouted out to God, "What do you want from me?" over and over again. I screamed, I shouted, I fell on my knees before God. And I waited. I wanted to cry so so much, but nothing came. No tears fell. I asked God what was wrong with me. No booming voice or answer came. Maybe I'm not listening right.

Thursday, 18 September 2008


N.B. Yes, yes, I know, EVERYONE's going on about Kimya Dawson. I do generally like to avoid the highway and fall down into some country lane when it comes to talking about things on my blog. But just for once, I want to draw attention to this. Okay?

I was walking home from something at church the other day, and I had my Mp3 player on, and this song came on. I was listening to it, and it just made me think, yeah! I know that so often in my life I feel so insignificant to the grand scheme of the world, and this song, although maybe not rooted in scripture and 100% theologically correct (what song is, these days?) it described adequately for me how I felt. And that's what I love about music.

"When I go for a drive I like to pull off to the side
Of the road, turn out the lights, get out and look up at the sky
And I do this to remind me that I'm really, really tiny
In the grand scheme of things and sometimes this terrifies me
But it's only really scary cause it makes me feel serene
In a way I never thought I'd be because I've never been
So grounded, and so humbled, and so one with everything
I am grounded, I am humbled, I am one with everything

Rock and roll is fun but if you ever hear someone
Say you are huge, look at the moon, look at the stars, look at the sun
Look at the ocean and the desert and the mountains and the sky
Say I am just a speck of dust inside a giant's eye
I am just a speck of dust inside a giant's eye

When I saw Geneviève I really liked it when she said
What she said about the giant and the lemmings on the cliff
She said 'I like giants
Especially girl giants
Cause all girls feel too big sometimes
Regardless of their size'

When I go for a drive I like to pull off to the side
Of the road and run and jump into the ocean in my clothes
I'm smaller than a poppy seed inside a great big bowl
And the ocean is a giant that can swallow me whole
So I swim for all salvation and I swim to save my soul
But my soul is just a whisper trapped inside a tornado
So I flip to my back and I float and I sing
I am grounded, I am humbled, I am one with everything
I am grounded, I am humbled, I am one with everything

So I talked to Geneviève and almost cried when she said
That the giant on the cliff wished that she was dead
And the lemmings on the cliff wished that they were dead
So the giant told the lemmings why they ought to live instead
When she thought up all those reasons that they ought to live instead
It made her reconsider all the sad thoughts in her head
So thank you Geneviève, cause you take what is in your head
And you make things that are so beautiful and share them with your friends
We all become important when we realize our goal
Should be to figure out our role within the context of the whole

And yeah, rock and roll is fun, but if you ever hear someone
Say you are huge, look at the moon, look at the stars, look at the sun
Look at the ocean and the desert and the mountains and the sky
Say I am just a speck of dust inside a giant's eye
I am just a speck of dust inside a giant's eye
I am just a speck of dust inside a giant's eye
And I don't wanna make her cry
Cause I like giants"
'I Like Giants' - Kimya Dawson

Sunday, 14 September 2008


N.B. So the summer is officially over and its back to Southend and back to work! Wahay!

I am very glad to be back home. Its been a very long six weeks. Things are starting back a little different, I'm in a new house, (new in the non-physical meaning of the word...) with a new perspective, and most of all a new attitude and a willingness to stick it out with God for another year. I have definately come back this year feeling a little different to the person I was before. Maybe the time away has made me realise how precious every moment in life is. Maybe I learnt something over the summer after all. Maybe I'm just learning to see things a little differently.

In the first week back, I learnt that openness is sometimes necessary to move forward. I shared some really deep, personal things with some friends of mine, and through their responses, learnt to be more willing to accept others kindness as something other than hostile. I learnt to trust people with things that I refuse to talk about. I learnt that not everyone in the world is out to make you feel insignificant. And that some people care about you just for you, and not for something you have done or something you will do for them.

I guess thats a lot to learn in the first week back at placement. But I am glad that I am learning it. I am glad that I have two extra people with whom I can journey through things with. I am glad that friendships are a two way thing, and that openness begets openness.

Over the summer, I was struggling with a number of issues from the past that God wanted me to go over, to re-experience (so-to-speak) in order to move on from them. Some have been a lot easier to journey through than others. But that is the pathway I am on. I know that being a Christian is not supposed to be an easy life, but that God will travel the highs and the lows with me. And luckily, he has put some people in my life that will also experience that rollercoaster with me. So I am glad, that the first week back was as it was. Because it has challenged me to travel along a road I am not comfortable travelling down. And in that uncomfortableness, I will learn to lean upon God more than ever.

Sunday, 31 August 2008


N.B. Could you walk into my head and take away all my secret thoughts? I really wish you could, then maybe I wouldn't have to think them anymore.

This last week has been weird, so say the least. I can't really describe how my mood has swung and twisted into a million different personas, but those of you who have spent time with me this week might have noticed it. It's actually really getting to me that I have these thoughts still. These worries and insecurities in my head that I thought I had banished to the nether worlds.

*sigh*. I bought this book aaages ago, because I was interested in the subject, (which I won't reveal.) I never actually ended up reading it, but whilst sorting through all my stuff to pack up this evening, I picked up this book and read the first chapter. And every sentence seems to describe how I've been feeling these last few months. Some parts describe me at aged 14, 15, 16, 17, 18. It is me, in this book. Everything it says rings true in my life. It's actually really scared me. I don't know how I would go about fixing this. But one thing I am sure of... I need help.

"Everything looked and sounded unreal. Nothing was what it is. That's what I wanted - to be alone with myself in another world where truth is untrue and life can hide from itself."
From 'A Long Day's Journey Into Night' by Eugene O'Neill

Monday, 25 August 2008


N.B. At Momentum I was reading this book, and as I read this part (below) I felt like it explained what I think was going on in my last blog, and what will, (I have no doubt) be happening over the next few months as God heals whatever I have inside me.

"The Lord knew it was going to be hard for me to change into the person he wanted me to be, because I was so used to living the total opposite. He had a lot of hell to squeeze out of me, and believe me - when the hell leaves you, sometimes it screams at God on the way out. And when the pain from your past leaves you, sometimes you have to feel it again on the way out."
'Save Me From Myself' - Brian Welch

If this knot in my stomach disperses, I fear I may throw up. I can feel the churning clock of time wrenching and searching, confusing my gut reaction with complete meltdown. I don't understand what's going on inside me, and my greatest fear is that no-one else does either. But how could they, being neither me nor God? I long for one person, just one persont o explain to me the torments and fears inside my head. I barely slept last night, sleep interspersed with nightmares and dreams, that shook me awake. What is happening to me God? Am I losing my mind?

I feel like I can think rational thoughts, but then my mind wanders to behaviours I daren't go back to. Is this where you want me to go? Are you taking me back there for a reason? Do you really think I am at last strong enough to deal with the pain? Or are you not yet convinced I am able to move on? I fear going back there would pierce old wounds and leave me bleeding. I fear going back there would awaken old emotions that were too strong for me to cope with before. If God is calling me back, sending me back, then I fear I have no choice, or rather, I fear greatest, I have no control.

Tuesday, 19 August 2008


N.B. If you are easily offended, please don't read. This is my blog, and I'm venting. I was unsure whether to post this blog, but I guess I'm practicing being honest with how I'm feeling, and this was a deeply significant time for me while I was away.

I don't want to speak. I feel disgusted at the thought of another word escaping my lips. Who am I? That I should merit blessing from God? I can think of no-one worse. Pity and love I deserve none. This dread is rising up in my stomach, stuck in my throat and choking me. How can I explain this in words? No, not even tears could explain this. It is more frightening than anything I have ever experienced before. Where has it come from? From what inner depths is it sourced? I forbid them overwhelm me, but who am I to command such freedom over it? There is no stopping it, no restricting its power over me. Do I need prayer? I feel it is too late for that now. Whatever demons I have contained inside me, now burst through, filling my head with anger and hate. And yet I fear 'hate' is not strong enough a word. Or perhaps it is not the right word. Complete confusion hangs over me now.

Have I anyone in the world? Or do the suspicions that arise in me now ring true? No-one really treasures who I am. I am just a convenience, a laugh, someone to use when everyone else is unavailable. Is there any who would stick around just for me? I am the last, the least, a useless shit in God's awesome kingdom. Why am I here? Oh, if someone were to let me in. I want nothing more than to be accepted, to be good enough, to be thought of. Am I really that awful? That none should consider my feelings. Constantly let down, or left out. But who could think worse of me that what I think of myself? I am left alone to dry these silent tears, left alone without God to comfort my soul. For even he has rejected me now, it seems. I am too unworthy to even think upon calling his name, and I am left unable to do so now anyway.

Everything within me is broken. There is nothing left inside me to bring my sanity round to existence. Who gives a fuck about me? I would desire nothing greater than to drag a razor across my tortured flesh. Ripping the demons from within me, I wish to bleed. To pour out the dark spirits that consume me from within. I am nothing, worth nothing, worthy of no love, nor compassion, and who is there now to give it to me, except God? And where is He? Not with me. Not even thinking of me. He leaves me here, to suffer. He leaves my mind to torment me further. I repulse them. I repulse them all. But more than that, I repulse myself. What fucking sick mind is this? That desires the blood more than life itself?

Why do you torment me God? Why do you leave me here? Is there nothing in me that pleases you? None that could be of use to you? Father, don't leave me to fight this alone. Don't take my lifeline from me? Am I really destined to live like this? In silence, excruciating mental torture? Please, Father, please. I feel like my head is going to explode with these questions Lord, are you really there? Do you even care about me, if just a little bit? In my silence Lord, in my ultimate surrender, will you meet with me? Father? I'm looking for you.

Tuesday, 12 August 2008


N.B. The title isn't actually intending to be a corny abbreviation of Leading Edge, but rather my thoughts (well, the rational ones at least...) about how I've been feeling the last couple of weeks.

I knew it was coming. So I don't know why I was so shocked when it finally hit me. I mean, everything that goes up, right? I guess I was being optimistic about how soon it would affect me. It's been barely 3 weeks since I left and already I'm feeling like it's been a million years. Or rather, my world has abruptly stopped turning while the rest of the world carries on. *sigh*

*Ami is really feeling like all this time on her own has not been overly helpful to her state of mind.*

Maybe all this has just highlighted how much of the time I am in two minds about things, walking a thin line between my two worlds - both holding as much reality as the other. Pain or ignorance? The truth or the mask? Subjective reality or insanity? Who can decipher between these things?

Right here. In my tent. Listening to the rain splatter mercilessly on the nylon roof. I feel like a fraud. I worship,and yet when the session ends I wonder why? I sing about God being my all, yet I have so much inside me that I've hidden for so long. I tell my kids to trust in God, yet I struggle to let him take control. In these quiet moments in which I search myself, I wonder what God sees in me. I wonder what he was thinking when he created my thoughts.

"Come here, please hold my hand, Lord, now
Help me, I'm scared please show me how to fight this,
God has a master plan, and I guess,
I am in his demand
Please save me, this time I cannot run,
And I'll see, you when this is done
And now I, have come to realize
That you are, the one who's left behind
Please stay until I'm gone, I'm here
Hold on to me, I'm right here waiting..."
'Not Now' - Blink 182

I know that in an hours time, I will emerge from my tent and smile at the first person I see, and maybe even have a small light-hearted conversation. Why? Because that's who I am. I just wish Ihad the guts to be the person she feels like inside right now.

P.S. Sorry Susie. ;)