Yeah, just a few hours (and an absolutely terrifyingly wonderful meeting) later, a few more words in your ear …

I wish I could share this space/place/environment/vibe/community/theme/stuff with everyone I know, really I do – there’s no way of doing justice to the combined momentum and excitement of a group from 25 nations polyloguing (it’s a word we use …) on chapter 2 of Genesis and coming up with A HOST OF ABSOLUTELY OUT OF THIS WORLD STUFF THAT I HAVE NEVER HEARD OF BEFORE IN ALL MY FLIPPING LIFE OF GOING TO FLIPPING CHRISTIAN THINGS!!!  This is absolutely new for every single one of us, and I was honestly dancing (while sitting down) with delight at several points.  My head is bursting with stuff, so I’m breaking my computer-curfew in order to let a few things out, in the forlorn hope that my brain might be able to calm down enough to go to bed sometime before breakfast time tomorrow 🙂

And additionally, when was the last time that you were in the meeting where the mic was left open to anyone who ‘had something from God’ and someone came forward and sang ‘I Believe in a Thing Called Love’?!!

(I’ll let you wonder about who it was …)

Anyway, wish you were here.

Day 4

Day 4 of the 40, and in all honesty, the last few days (in their own right, and as an overflow of the previous few weeks) have been wonderful to the point of using a word like ‘beautiful’, which would normally sound really out of place.

Some highlights:
– the focus on life/earth/the Bible as ONE BIG STORY (we are characters, God is author + character + scenery etc.) has been gorgeous
– a public reading of the Lion, the Witch, & the Wardrobe on Tuesday
– a ‘bottom up’ focus (almost unique in a conference/gathering), with the emphasis taken away from speakers and given to us as participants
– the arrival (out of the blue) of 2 NZ girls, who I love!
– our inter-cultural love feast last night
– us genuinely not knowing where God is going next
– a very passionate Make Poverty History morning yesterday
– so many friends, so much love

I’d love to write more (and more regularly), but time and tiredness tend to intervene.  I’m off to Edinburgh for Make Poverty History tomorrow night (overnight coach there AND back – FLIP!) so will report again on Sunday.  Farewell …


And like this:

Let’s have a little talk about tweetle beetles….

What do you know about tweetle beetles? Well… When tweetle beetles fight, it’s called a tweetle beetle battle. And when they battle in a puddle, it’s a tweetle beetle puddle battle. AND when tweetle beetles battle with paddles in a puddle, they call it a tweetle beetle puddle paddle battle. AND… When beetles battle beetles in a puddle paddle battle and the beetle battle puddle is a puddle in a bottle…
…they call this a tweetle beetle bottle puddle paddle battle muddle. AND… When beetles fight these beetles in a bottle with their paddles and the bottle’s on a poodle and the poodle’s eating noodles…
…they call this a muddle puddle tweetle poodle beetle noodle bottle paddle battle.

Here ends today’s reading.


I realised the other day that I don’t like grown-up poetry.  I like rhymes and fun and things like this:


Christopher Robin had wheezles and sneezles
They bundled him into his bed.
They gave him what goes with cold in the nose,
And some more for cold in the head.
They wondered if wheezles could turn into measles,
If sneezles would turn into mumps;
They examined his chest for a rash, and the rest
Of his body for swelling and lumps.
They sent for some doctors in sneezles and wheezles
To tell them what ought to be done.
All sorts and conditions of famous physicians
Came hurrying round at a run.
They all made a note of state of his throat,
They asked if he suffered from thirst;
They asked if the sneezles came after the wheezles,
Or if the first sneezles came first.
They say “If you teasle a sneezle or wheezle,
A measle may easily grow.
But humour or pleazle the wheezle or snezle,
The measle will certainly go.”

They expounded the reazles for sneezles and wheezles,
The manner of measles when new.
They said, “If he freezles in draughts and in breezles,
The PHTHEEZLES may even ensue.”

Christopher Robin got up in the morning,
The sneezles had vanished away.
And the look of his eye seemed to say to the sky,
“Now, how to amuse them today? ”


I’m calming down now (stealing some biscuits from my room-mate James’s bag helps), but a few minutes ago I was a big pile of grumpiness that wanted to:
a) kick things, knock stuff off tables and be generally angry
b) be like a child who’s so upset but is too tired to express it properly, and can only tremble and cry

I’ve had a really really flipping annoying day (starting very early, waking up at about 3:30), and I hate getting angry and frustrated cos nothing else works, and everything else goes wrong too.  But this evening especially so.

We were breaking up into ‘girls’ & ‘guys’, in order to hang out and have fun together.  As most people know, I usually prefer hanging out with girls anyway, and all my worst fears for the evening have been confirmed (though in different ways than expected):
– Found out just before that one of my best friends (Catherine) has to start chemotherapy.  But I go anyway.
– Everyone else is energetic and extroverted; I want to run away. But I stay (I’m such a martyr).
– They play volleyball; I can’t cos I sliced my finger yesterday. But I watch.
– They switch to football; I can’t play cos my foot’s knackered (kind of scared it might be broken actually). But end up joining in anyway, only to absolutely screw up my other leg so now I can’t even walk.

So I’m in that horrible place where I’m worn out and hurting and can’t do anything about it cos I’m worn out and hurting, y’know?  I hate feeling so self-centred and grumpy, but I just don’t know what I can do – I don’t even want to look at another human being.

Thanks for listening.

POLITICS, for Heaven’s Sake

It wasn’t something I was anticipating, but I’ve gone and got all interested in politics this morning!  OOOOoooohhh fun …

It’s genuinely fascinating to watch how European politicians are functioning at the moment, especially those dreaming of an EU superstate (and whose hopes have therefore effectively evaporated in the last month, since the French & Dutch referenda) – I mean, throwing proper insults around at national leaders just doesn’t befit men with receding grey hair!

Not sure if I can possibly do justice to the situation briefly, but here goes:  I’m finding it very exciting to watch Britain (led by the glorious mr Tony) using our out-of-date-and-quite-unfair £3bn budget rebate as a bargaining tool in order to draw attention to the even-more-hopelessly-out-of-date-and-frankly-just-flipping-stupid Common Agricultural Policy, by means of which the French can passify their farmers (to the tune of £23.6bn per year), and us lovely Europeans can legislate injustice against the poor of the world, who cannot possibly compete against EU member food producers.

M. Chirac can’t discuss the CAP, cos French farmers will blockade the whole country again and he’ll have to resign, and so he (and Belgium, Luxembourg, and Germany) are reduced to trying to make Tony Blair look like Cruella Devil (and he does, kind of, doesn’t he?!) for being so horribly selfish about such a small amount of money, and hope that no one notices.

It feels nasty to say, but it looks like the French leadership are quite stuffed at the moment.  I learned about the CAP in GCSE Geography, and it was clear to our simple 15 year old minds that it was just absolutely stupid (46% of the EU’s budget subsidising 5% of its population), so I’m feeling quite vindicated now that the clever people have caught up with me.  But the really funny thing is the feeling of actually whole-heartedly agreeing with our Prime Minister about something (I don’t think I’ve ever said "Good boy Tony – come on!" before …), a feeling apparently shared by lots of people (from all parts of Europe) on the BBC website.  A new sensation.

This is politics being exciting for me.  I thank you.


Well, it doesn’t look like this pop fan will be going to Hyde Park on July 2nd – 4 text messages and a postcard, but all in vain …

Oh well.

We here at the Factory are working out if God wants us to all go up for the march in Edinburgh that same day, which is something that’s been on my heart since way before I knew there was going to be a march, so my attention’s now naturally starting to turn in that direction.  But still, if you have any spare Live8 tickets, I’ll be very happy to help you use them 😉

And while I’m asking, I’d love to go to the Ashes this summer too …

Loving Linguistics

Just a quick one …

I’ve been having a really great time ‘doing stuff’ at The Factory this last week-and-a-bit, and honestly we’ve laughed more than I would have thought possible with a group of Christians (cos frankly, Christianland is often quite a sombre place …).  But at the same time, I’m not really feeling very loved.  And the reason SEEMS to be that my major love languages haven’t been ‘seen to’.

I’m a physical touch and quality time person, very very much so.

So, if there’s no one to hug me (and I mean properly properly regularly, y’know?) and no chance to have proper 1 on 1 time with people, then ‘it’ doesn’t quite work properly.

Yeah, so I’m missing those kind of people just at the moment …