Tuesday, 16 December 2008

Bird Watching

Hi... i wanna write today about Bird Watching...

now for those who know me, NO i am not talking about the female variety, but the tweety creatures that live in trees. Here is a pic of where i do my bird watching :) From the large windows in my house i can see Blackbirds, Robins, Tits (hehe, still makes me laugh), Pigeons, Magpies and the well known demonically possessed seagulls who do the largest poops on my car, that you have ever seen.

What i have noticed is that these birds always seem to have a sense of purpose. (even if it is to frustrate the hell out of me by deafcing my car evry day). I have not slowed much to take time and watch this kind of nature before, but it is amazing how in their own way they are actively creating, building, storing and observing.

What i imagine is that they are not sitting around thinking, 'oh damn i didn't get that nest built in time'.. 'crap i forgot to marinate the worms when i left the nest this morning', or ' if only i could be on a nice palm branch somewhere'.

I have noted recently that i spend a huge amount of time thinking about the future and sometime in the past and do not spend a huge deal of time in the here and now.
I am becoming increasingly conscious of ' The Moment'.

Matthew6 vs25-26 ' I tell you not to worry about your life. Don't worry about having something to eat or drink or wear. Isn't life more important than food or clothing? Look at the birds of the sky! They don't plant or harvest. They don't store in barns. Yet your father in heaven takes care of them. Aren't you worth more than birds?'

Linked to the last blog about suffering i ask the question when reading this, ' well yeah but some people don't have food to eat at all and they are not taken care of... shouldn't they worry??'

On further thought and reading though i don't think that is what is being said here. Jeff Lucus points out.. that this passage does not mean we should not think about practical stuff, and give no thought to material things.. "My bird lodgers are industrius and busy and the bible is quite blunt about laziness...Jesus calls us away from a superficial obsession with stuff, away for settlng from mere survival, into a life of real significance and purpose "

Like the birds i want to be free from this kind of worry, kinda living in the moment. When people say life is for living and we need to make the most of every moment, i wonder how much those people spend thought and energy worrying about the moments looming the next day?? In a time right now, which for some is extremely tense, with looming reeundancy and economic collapse, i think these words are especially helpful. Lets focus on what we can change/do. Lets focus on the here and now, knowing God is with us no matter how hard it gets. This refusal to worry does not come naturally.
Worry produces anxiety and that is not a helpful thing to carry around with us. I am trying my best to lower my anxiety, take a breath and watch how the birds do it.

"Don't worry about tomorrow, it will take care of itself. You have enough to worry about today" Matt6vs34

Thursday, 11 December 2008

A long suffering one...

i can not believe how many times i have been asked in recent weeks about suffering. it is also the key theme of the book "The Shack" that i am reading.
Why does God allow it?
Why would God answer your prayer for a parking space and not the cry of a little girl about to be abused by her father?

There are answers that people think are cop outs, there are suggestions that go part way and other thoughts that satisfy us for now.

The clear answer is we don't know. God knows. I think the question is more 'Do we trust God?'
If we don't believe in God we don't really need to ask the question or get flustered about someone having an opinion about why God does allow things. It is simply then part of nature and fairness does not come into it.

Why do we blame God? When we think about it, many of the monstrosities done in the world are in the hands of humans and some less obvious, cancer for example... how do we know what really gives us this. Something in the food maybe (artificial agents), the deodorant we use (aluminum), the chewing gum (aspartame)?? Who knows.
If you believe in karma you would believe anything bad that happens to us is deserved from a former life.

But okay why doesn’t God intervene when bad things do happen?
Why did he create pain in the first place?

When I think back to the summer before last, I recount an incident on a beach in Cyprus where a 4 year old boy was dragged out of the water in front of me, possibly unconscious for sometime his frail little body… still. I remember hearing a voice in me saying, go over and pray for him, touch his body and he will be restored. I didn’t. Others tried to resuscitate him but failed, he was dead. The next day I was reading my book. The first thing I read was ‘we need to trust God as we would trust that breathing life into a body can revive it’. Were these words mere coincidence? My heart sank. Could I have done something about this little boy, it brings tears to my eyes now. I don’t know. When I was 14 we were holidaying in France, My best friend Jonny saw a man in trouble in the water, I thought he was joking and ignored it. The next thing we saw screaming from the beach, my mother and I rushed to see a mans head bobbing up and down 200 metres out, we went to swim to try and help but the current was too strong and I turned my mother back, we spent time on the beach my mum consoling his newly wedded wife. His body was found 23 miles up the coast the next day. Could I have stopped it? I don’t know. Could God have, I don’t know? What possible good could be in that?

In Dr.larry Crabb’s book, ‘Moving through your problems toward God’, he helps me with these questions…

I Have spent my entire life trying to understand people and life…. And I have learnt much, but some things lie far beyond human comprehension. Godly parents lose their children to drugs ,suicide and materialism. Good families are torn apart by unresolvable tensions. LIFE IS SO MADDENING, so stubbornly uncooperative with our best efforts to reduce it to a straightline, cause and effect flow chart. When I allow myself to think deeply about it I realise I can’t guarantee that someone I love will not take his or her own life. Some things I can do will lower the probabilities, but playing the odds is not very comforting. If people were to balance everyday demonstrations of Gods kindness against evidences of divine indifference, and then determine their level of trust by the position of the scales, very few joyfully confident, exuberantly committed Christians would be running about. ….. ‘

He goes onto say how he has seen some horrendous things with seemingly no clear good emerging, utterly senseless, random and without redeemable usefulness. ‘ I have seen a godly woman contract a rare disease after enduring a dead marriage for many years, I have seen a happy young family torn into despair when the father accidentally backed the car over his three year old son’

I feel this is a deep issue that we each need to grapple with. I don’t think I can do justice what is written so well in books like the above.

I feel to some it is to apportion blame on someone because when we are faced with suffering in the world, We either ask ourselves, 'what can i do?' 'am i to blame?' This leaves us in a place of guilt which we don't like or we can quickly project blame elsewhere.

Maybe this for some does not get God off the hook and before we could possibly believe or trust in a God that cares, we have to ask the question why did he not care for that person we loved, or that helpless child??

I feel that this is where forgiveness comes in. Blame often comes from anger. There is nothing wrong with anger. Also everything is right with Justice. However, to appoint ourselves judge is not The Way. It is God’s job and actually God wants to heal and redeem even the most sick individual.
Matthew 6 verse14 – 'If you forgive others for the wrong they do to you your father in heaven will forgive you'.
Matthew 7 vs 1- ‘Don’t condemn others and God won’t condemn you. God will be as hard on you as you are to others’

Also it can take years and a long journey for someone to forgive someone who has hurt them or someone they love. Even when they do forgive this does not always restore trust in that person or even mean that you now have relationship with them. But most psychologist agree that not forgiving someone damages us.

i think the reason i would ask God for a parking space (and i laugh when i do) is that i believe he cares about everything i do. The reason i would stop eating for a day to pray for a sick friend is because I HOPE God hears me and intervenes. But that is up to him. I wish I knew if I could do anything different to save people. I know I can do a lot more than I do now to save those starving and dying in pain every minute.

I wonder if actually the question of why does God allow suffering is partly a consumer idea? The concept that God is there for something we can get from him, rather than something/someone to be praised and adored? The opposite to asking what has God done for me? is what can i do for him? The opposite of hating God and blaming is to Love God and spend time trying to get to know him, ask the questions but give a chance to respond.

I don’t want to be contrite or insensitive…what is more important is that we ask the questions, don’t ignore the pain, face it, hard as it might be. Unforgiveness holds us back

God …

Breathe in me… deep
That I might breathe… and live
And hold me close that I might sleep
Soft held by all you give

Come kiss me wind and take my breath
Till you and I are one
And we will dance among the tombs
Until all death is gone

And no-one knows that we exist
Wrapped in each others arms
Except the one that blew the breath
And keeps me safe from harm

Addtional thought
I wonder if actually the question of why does God allow suffering is partly a consumer idea? The concept that God is there for something we can get from him, rather than something/someone to be praised and adored? The opposite to asking what has God done for me? is what can i do for him? The opposite of hating God and blaming is to Love God and spend time trying to get to know him, ask the questions but give a chance to respond.

Life is a journey… we can journey with or without God. With, is not the easy way out. Facing pain is not easy. But it is easier to face pain with God than without.

A journey with God is a road marked with suffering, the road less travelled. (see M Scott Peck)

Tuesday, 25 November 2008


so this is my blog and this is about what goes on in my world. Well money is often thought here and i am currently thinking about the giving i do. so many good causes, so many needs. feed the hungry, help the oppressed, support friends who are giving up their income to help others. Help friends in ministries such as urban dance projects, 24/7 ibiza. Provide water, shelter, clothing, emotional support, medical care. Hope. as i thought about these things, i came up with the sum £230, £130 was the sum of a pair of trainers i was going to buy... i thought twice and decided i could give the money away instead. £100 was 10% of my income this month. So £230 to spend on others, where should it go? i watched a challenging documentary on India and the Dalits. They are a group numbering 250'000000 in India. They are outcastes, nobodies, untouchables. Many clean feces everyday of their lives. They are considered by others to be sub human, without souls. Therefore worthless. For £230 it said , you can help a family escape the debt of thier masters and find freedom to live as they wish. They will never be able to get out of slavery unless this happens. On the same day i was looking at the 'xxxchurch' in USA. They are a bunch of christians who go to Porn conventions and hand out 'Jesus Loves Porn Stars' bibles. They also run support groups for those addicted to Pornography, gambling and other life inhibiting habits. In Ibiza we handed out these to people who wanted them. So i found out how much it would be to ship 50 over. £230.

i love coincidences, they give me a buzz of interested hope... maybe they are just nothing...

saturday night i went street walking for my work. Myself and Joe walked the streets and introduced ourselves to door staff. I don't know many people in Bournemouth yet, but as we spoke to two fairly unfriendly door staff. a girl came out of the bar. I had met her and her friend 3 weeks earlier at a salsa class. In that conversation she had asked me what i did for a living. Her friend was excited by my response, as she was a christian and we had a conversation about what i did. They then both came to our Church for the night event... check out...
www.churchforthenight.com... there i had mentioned to her that we wanted to get a donkey for the next event as it was Christmas!!! To my suprise she said she knew someone with a Donkey!!.. unfortunatley she had lost my number and had not been in touch.. so back to the club door sitution and i was surprised and happy to see her. I got her number and she went back in. No sooner had she gone in then another girl came out.. i did a double take... it was a friend of a friend i had met in Ibiza, she was visiting Bournemouth for the weekend and i think was just as suprised to see me...she asked if i would join them going to another bar to find our mutual friend but i had to carry on my street walking... now again you could say coincidence or perfect timing?? It made me feel positive about going out that night as the door staff had not filled me with positive vibes. These happenings have occured 'everytime' i have been out so far including last week two guys coming up to me and showing me video images on their mobile phone of myself dancing on a boat in ibiza.

will keep you udated on future happenings..

Monday, 24 November 2008

hey all.. just got sent this from Brian Heasley in Ibiza from our summer work .. really great work out there.. support it if you can.. just click or copy and paste...


Friday, 21 November 2008

lots of words today, sorry, next time will be pictures :)

This week seems to have brought new unexpected thoughts and challenges. I can be the sort of person who drifts along comfortably thinking I have it together, then along comes a piece of information that radically shifts my thinking. Well this week that is happening.

For about 4 months now I have been extremely comfortable in my faith and direction then all of a sudden this week many questions have been emerging seeming to be all a bit much.

Saturday was the first of these days where is struggled to find motivation to do anything. In the end I battled through and decided to go street walking alone to introduce my self to all the door staff and police in town. This was a very conducive evening where I met loads of people and got really good feedback, not to mention bumping into friend Nicole and dancing with her and her cousin in a bar. The night ended at 6 am after a few people came back to mine for a cupper, all talking about religion poverty and the like…worth the struggle.

So why still the struggle. maybe was that i was coming down with the flu i now have maybe tiredness but I think finding a happy balance in life is important but without the swings this does not happen, I think I am in a swinging moment. The mystery of God is something that is really intriguing me right now. The idea that maybe I don’t know very much at all is again creeping in.

i have been giving a lot of thought lately to the ideas about depression why we get down about things. there are often overwhelming senses of hopelessness in society. whether by large scale issues or personal griefs and un-fulfillment. There is sometimes a void between what we are concerned about and what we can actually do about it. This helplessness is not only stressful but also brings us down. Not understanding the issues or seeing a way forward amplifies this.

my faith was a little rocked the other day by a programme i saw. i obviously don't want to be be someone blown by the wind (by everything that comes my way), but there was some quite compelling evidence about the christian faith that made me sit back and think!! i was encouraged today by some words in a book i read.

'attitudes have a kind of inertia. once set in they will keep going, even in the face of evidence. To change an attitude requires a considerable amount of work and suffering. The process must either begin in an effortfully maintained posture of self doubt and criticism, or in a painful acknowledgment that what we thought was right all along may not be right after all. Then it proceeds into a state of confusion. This state is quite uncomfortable and we no longer seem to know what is right or wrong or indeed which way to go. But it is a state of openess and therefore of growing and learning. It is only from the quicksand of confusion that we are able to leap into the new and better vision.' M Scott Peck. 'People of the Lie'.

whether dealing with personal pain or moments of anguish and uncertainty in our attitudes or direction, it is comforting to know that through our suffering, uncertainty and trial can come new vision, perspective and maturity. If we suppress this suffering or ignore the thoughts or compelling evidence we will probably remain unchanged, immature and depressed.

i want to be someone who looks at what i can do and doesn't focus on what can't be done. i am allowed to be depressed, because there is evil in the world that needs changing. but if i allow this depression to render me ineffective, i will slowly disintegrate. I choose to make the difference i can.
i will not be blown around by these things but give it to God in prayer, do some thinking and study and come out enlightened.

"When I pray coincidences happen and when I don't they don't!” - Archbishop William Temple

Tuesday, 11 November 2008

okay so i am sorry this has taken so long and i guess with moving into a new place i have had to let things settle a little... have now been in Bournemouth for 1 month and have not stopped much yet. I have been in london djing, at friends wedding and more and just feel like starting to think about this being my new home. It feels like i could be here a long time and that i have given up much to invest in this place even though i don't know it or many of it's people yet, but i feel drawn here and have a strong sense of purpose here.

i have had many thought over previous weeks and last week was on a conference about Community Transformation. this is a subject very close to my heart. It is really what i have been working toward my whole adult life and even childhood too. But the idea of the little difference i make or how big the worlds problems are are often so overwhelming i think.."whats the point`.

This conference was lead by Tearfund (Christian poverty charity) and Livability ( provider of care for adults). Firstly the conference modelled what it spoke of. i have never been in a bunch of people with so little pretence and so much openess. seemed like everyone, young or old, whatever background were on the same page.
The key speaker named Dave Andrews was a humble Australian guy with a larger than life personality. He basically said that we can change no one but ourselves.

He focused on the pain and depression people go through and said that our common problem is that we often look at the things we can not change rather than what we can. If we always look beyond our area of influence and concentrate on the areas for concern, we will always be depressed.
I think this is why i get so frustrated by the News a lot of the time. It just shows all the things that go wrong and very little of what people are actually doing about it.It makes me feel powerless. There are many things that people (not just Christians) all around the world are doing to help alleviate pain and suffering, but only a tiny amount is ever reported ... no wonder we/ i feel hopeless at times.

i am trying hard to start to focus on the moment (where God is with me, with us in hopelessness) and findout what I CAN do. Fortunatley there are bunch of people (did you know a bunch of banana's is 300 or so... i mean the bunch like 5-10) here who are really committed to the same thing. I think doing things together is much better. and if what Dave Andrews says is true and i can only change myself... If we as a group change ourselves then others will see that change and who knows maybe decide to change themselves...

so this is a bit of where i am at right now... grappling with questions and not having the answers... i am still thankful and loking forward to the challenges ahead.

write again very soon!!!!

'The submission of individual independence to a higher force than our own, is the only way of ridding the world of evil. ' ANON

Sunday, 26 October 2008

Starting a new job...

So my new job is now a week old. In that time i have also been best man at my friend Ben's wedding... (very proud of him right now)... i have met up with people from Ibiza... visited 2 clubs, been out on the streets on Carnage night when 2000 students bar crawl the town in winter with t shirts and much less on. Oh did i mention getting pulled over by the police when dropping two friends off home, who incidentally were wearing not much more than lingerie!! There is a story to tell there somewhere.
It is hard to know what to think at the moment, some people are very happy with the way things are in the role others have big ideas for change. I think my time in Ibiza has definitely given me a comparison and i hope to find good bits from both to develop things here further.

One thing i do know is that i am certainly in a Bridging position between 'world and church'.. on my visit to the Christian union i was approached by one girl who said ' isn't it sinful to go into nightclubs, we are praying for them to close in our church and you go in them.....i don't believe God is in those places'
I also at times frequent a Christian dating site a girl recently sent me a message ....
I checked out your facebook, which led me to your website, I don't see much of Jesus in there. Clubbing, parties, worldly activities is all I saw.
Didn't notice anything that leads me to think you are a christian who loves God.
So thanks, but no thanks.

Similarly on the street tonight a guy asked who we were, one of those with us said who do you think we are? he replied Christians and quickly i definitely don't need your help...and made his exit.

i guess in both camps some will love us some hate us... i have to get used to it.. people can be very quick to judge at times.

Some want to be left alone, some feel so alone, some want to make everyone like them, others want to be like everyone else, some want to change and can't, others can but don't want to.

Is there an answer.. i don't know but i am learning to love myself despite what others may think, i am learning to Love God despite what i sometimes feel and i am learning to accept others even when they don't think like me...

life is a journey.. right now i feel like i am getting there :)

Thursday, 16 October 2008

Bournemouth and beyond

So, i am now in Bournemouth. About to begin work as a Night Club Chaplain here. so far the people are really great and settling in well. i don't really know what to expect yet??
There seems to be a lot happening here, i have only been hearing about the Christian scene so far, but there are new expressive things happening. Tonight i will go to a group meeting which has been set up from the Church for the night event (this a where a big church building is taken over, filled with visuals, music and candles and a space for people to reflect, pray or chat). Next event is 31st october and also i am djing in Dex club Brixton on 1st November for you info.

Current Thoughts

Many of my current thoughts have been around finding friends, maybe a girlfriend here and how all that will work. We attended the Uni christian union meeting last night. There was a speaker who talked about relationships.
I was challenged by his words about finding our meaning in something higher (God) and not a relationships being the goal of our existence. He also touched on our attitudes to clothes and acceptance from others, which have been themes of thought this summer.

On a deeper level, i read a note yesterday from 'Smouldering Wick'. it was on the subject of Loneliness....
'You struggle to accept the possibility of knowing happiness without others, locked in a constant search for someone who will complete you and give you the contentment only God can bring. Until you are at peace with yourself, you will never be ready to accept the love of another or return it to them...'

This echoes my thought over the summer, of trying to get to a place where i feel free to love and not bound to love. Also not placing expectations on others to be all for us.

I desire to find a quiet space to be alone and also a social life that allows me to be me and you to be you. I hope i find it here.

Sunday, 5 October 2008

How Partying should be

I don't know what you picture when i tell you about the night clubbing i am doing here in Ibiza, but let me try and give a picture.
Today myself, Bruce and Helen from 24/7 Ibiza went to the closing party of the Space nightclub. usually Space has 5 Rooms and a terrace all playing dance music of different kinds. Today they expanded for an 18 hour Fiesta. They put a stage in the rear car park allowing an additional 3000 people to the already 6000 capacity. The show was spectacular. Every 20 minutes a new set of performers would get on stage. there were acrobats, beautiful dancers, Men in gorilla suits, then a cast from Cats took the stage somersalting and flipping and prowling. At one point Darth Vador and the storm troopers, baba and jengo Fet tok the stage, all very authentic. They wheeled women in butterfly outfits round on scaffolding with a fan blowing the wings around, whilst on stage a man hung suspended spinning with a BMX bike in between his legs. Unbelievable at times. As well as world class dj's, one dj got 1000 people to crouch down and all jump up together when the tune kicked in. After 11 hours i was tired and sadly didn't stay till the end :( But i have DC10 nightclub closing party tommorow and that will be my last Ibiza party this year.

I am back in the Uk on 11th october. will put some pics of my time up in the next week.
Thanks for reading and look out for new blogs when i get to my new job in Bournemouth.
Grace and Peace

Sunday, 21 September 2008

Doing Good, Part 2 -Desires

Taken from Smouldering Wick, reflections by Adam Pope

'do what the lord wants and he will give you your hearts desires.' Psalm 37 v4

'Your deepest desire seems unfulfilled and it consumes you, decisions you take, the places you go, the plans you make are all influenced by this longing to belong, to share your life with someone, pour yourself into them, to love and be loved.
The desire is natural but the consuming nature of it is not. While you continue to be preoccupied with striving toward this goal you can not find peace. Putting people or circumstances on a pedestal in that way only places unrealistic expectation on yourself and others and is destined to fail.
Only by valuing yourself as you are and excepting the situation God has placed you in, trusting that God is able to, and will, provide for all your needs when the time is right, can you truly be free. '

Friday, 19 September 2008

Choosing well makes us good?? Part 1

Hi... i shared this with someone in the prayer room here in Ibiza today because i thought he needed to hear it... I need to hear it... maybe you do to..

'Our capacity to choose changes constantly with our practice of life. The longer we continue to make the wrong decisions, the more our heart hardens, the more we make the right decision the more our heart softens- or better perhaps, comes alive.... Each step in life which increases my self-confidence, my integrity, my courage, my conviction also increases my capacity to choose the desirable alternative, until eventually it becomes more difficult for me to choose the undesirable rather than the desirable action.
On the other hand, each act of surrender and cowardice weakens me, opens the path for more acts of surrender and eventually freedom is lost. Between the extreme where i can no longer do a wrong act and the extreme when i have lost my freedom to right action, there are innumerable degrees of freedom of choice. In the practice of life, the degree of freedom is different at any given moment. If the degree of freedom to choose the good is great, it needs less effort to choose the good. If it is small, it takes great effort, help from others and favourable circumstances...

Most people fail at the art of living not because they are inherently bad or so without will that they cannot lead a better life, they fail because they do not wake up and see when they stand at a fork in the road and have to decide. They are not aware when life asks them a question, and when they still have alternative answers. Then each step along the wrong road it becomes increasingly difficult for them to admit they are on the wrong road, often only because they have to admit that they have to go back to the first wrong turn and must accept that fact that they have wasted time and energy.'
Te Heart of Man. It's Genius for Good and Evil. p173-178
Eric Fromm (secular Psychologist)

Thursday, 18 September 2008


In my experience the two top responses I am confronted with when I tell someone I am a Christian are…1. Do you believe in sex before marriage? And 2. What do you think about homosexuality?

I often wonder why this is?
Often Christians are seen as Hypocrites for not practicing what they preach, sometimes they are criticised for holding strong opinion or saying what they think.

I think some criticism of the modern Christian church is valid.
In his book ‘ exchanging the truth of God for a lie’ Jeremy Marks recounts many stories where the church has let down those who opt for ‘ Same sex’ relationships or even hint that they are struggling with same sex thoughts.
This book is a must read for anyone looking into this subject. In this book (which I would fail miserably to summarise if I tried) he overwhelmingly points out that actually the real important issue for Christians need not be “ what moral standpoint I take on this issue’ but actually pointing out that the core of the Christian faith is about Acceptance and Love.
He does not argue for a soft moral stance or that anything goes, just that there is more to this issue than quoting a couple of bible verses and saying that is all there is to it.

Now this does not really answer the question, ‘What do I think about homosexuality?’
In his book Jeremy states that ‘same sex partnerships should be seen as a gift from God’.

As a statement on its own, with my past biblical understanding and conditioned thoughts on homosexuality I found that a very hard statement to take.
However, after studying from his website and following a very compelling thought process through his book I have begun to see some light in this area.

1. If for example the church is to be’ Gods light for the nations’, how can we sit in judgement when the bible clearly tells us not to.

2. We can not reduce homosexuality to issues of lust and promiscuity, otherwise we need apply the same to all hetrosexual relationships. When i look at gay couple, I have often reduced it to a sexual repulsion picturing the sexual act as the focus for what I see. Jeremy asks why do we do that when ‘ I don’t picture hetrosexual couples I see having sex when i look at them?

4. I think it is important for us to be asking questions of ourselves, to weigh up with others the biblical application of certain scriptures we always take as clear… to be open to different perspectives and above all to be accepting and loving to all regardless of how we see their actions or lifestyle choices, else we will ALL be rejected from the church.

5. The way we as Gods church have on the whole dealt with this issue and deal with those who are gay has not worked very well and something needs to change.
Jeremy is very pro acceptance and support to those in same sex relationships because it works to bring them the fullness Jesus has for thier lives. he moves away from the model he used to adopt of an 'ex gay ministry'.

There are many single sex couples around today in committed loving relationships. Some with a deep connection and faith in Jesus, some with children. I have heard the idea that when mooted that if this in a single sex partnership (with children) were to become Christians then obviously something would have to change in the relationship?? Would it?
That is a good questionable thought, but definitely one that will be a reality in our day and could we honestly say that with our knowledge of Jesus love and care that he would break up a happy committed family unit for some moral high ground??

There are many single gay Christians feeling crippled by conditioned guilt from ideas and condemnation placed before them, who need love encouragement and acceptance.
It is possible than in this issue the whole ‘Hate the Sin Love the Sinner’ doesn’t really cut the mustard and we actually need to go deeper in the issue?

If so get the book, look at the website and lets talk openly and lovingly about it…www.courage.org.uk

For me right now in this issue I like the phrase 'Love listens and doesn’t sit in judgment'.
Maybe my views will change again, but they are not the most important thing here, people are. This is an open dialogue for me and not something I have concluded or nearly begun to understand, but I want to journey with others of all persuasions, taste’s and behaviours and not be bound or bind them by my opinions…

Saturday, 13 September 2008

confronted by God-incidence

Manumission closing party 08

we were outlast night at the closing party of one of the biggest club nights on the island. This featured stilt walkers, digereedoo player,an opera singer, naked pole dancers, rocky horror style stage show, flemenco and african dance, spanish guitar, 20 foot paper mache cat and a lady pulling razer blades from her crotch region... sounds disturbing huh!!!
well there was lots of great music too... The previous night i had been struggling a little with being in ibiza, the pressures and temptations in this environment can be intense. i had prayed that morning and felt some peace with God. I had a fantastic conversation in the centre with a guy i have been getting to know. he had asked to chat on a more deeper level about spiritual and lifestyle issues.

Entering the Manumission environent was strange at first. In the midst of this environment the thoughts of the previous night etc..., the dj just played my favourate song of the year which i had not heard on a dancefloor before. I was going a little crazy with my glowsticks!! Just then a guy next to me was watching me and i kinda recognised him. so many people here one familiar face can blend to another. Anyway i asked him does he know me?? He said 'were you in Verbier last year?'

i was SHOCKED.. i had met this guy, Sully, on a crazy 3 day trip snowboarding in the swiss mountains last Februrary. We met in a little bar and got chatting about life, love and spiritual things. He was an extremely spiritual person and we connected deeply. He was from La Reunion, a French island off South Africa. I had visited friends there for one month previously which was an initial connecting point as not many English people go there.
We spent 3 hours chatting outside in the moonlit, snow covered mountains, just star gazing from a bench. I remember coming home after and explaining to friends that i had met this amazing guy who had not been a Christian believer but who had taught me more about connecting with God than any Christian i had previously known (how could this be i pondered?). He told me that i was too hurried and rushed and that i needed to enjoy the silence and just receive. So there in the mountains we stared at the sky not saying much and received.

We exchanged email and chatted on line for a time but then lost touch.

So back to Manumission Ibiza. this guy who i had this deep connection with is staring at me amongst thousands of people. He told me it was amazing to see me and t
thanks for 20 euros i had given to help him out back then. I think we were both shocked. We exchanged numbers and said we will meet up again to talk more deeply. Over the evening we smiled rememered bits of conversation and i had a real sense that it was indeed a Divine appointment. Not just a random coincidence. Toward the end of the night i saw him sitting alone with his eyes shut on the staging in front of the DJ booth. I joined him and we sat there for a while. He leaned across and said isn't it wierd that a year and a half ago we sat under the stars in Verbier and now we are sitting here.
In the noise of Amnesia nightclub we sat in silence gazing on a thousand dancers... i looked up and stared at the ceiling and remembered the night and thoughts of receiving. Just then the lazers of the club came on shining on 4 large mirror balls. This created a beautiful effect of STARS on the ceiling. I sat there in silence, in the midst of the Mayhem and received.

'Maybe if you can be still long enough and face the pain and brokenness of silence, in the midst of Chaos, maybe you too can receive'...


Thursday, 11 September 2008


so they have all gone and heres the evidence!!! some say there is little difference others are shocked... but whatever your response... my main reason for shedding the dreads was to get used to not being affirmed by what others think about my appearance and to be more me... so it is what it is... a mop of curls like my mums :)

footnote... the last dread was shed at 7.30 in the dark of a quiet room with a little prayer and a tear... please remember me and my dreads in your thoughts and prayers and my future hair stlyes

'God knows every hair on my head... and the ones in a box in my room'

Tuesday, 9 September 2008

shedding the dreads

firstly again, apology for not posting sooner. from now i will endeavor to post once a week at least.

i am currently in the process of removing my dreads. i have had them for 19 years. i have had mixed response to this proposal. some have said why they look good, others say yeah about time. i agree with both, which makes this a hard moment in my personal development.
i feel that coming to ibiza was a real journey for me of becoming more 'myself'.
i like the concept that God created me to be free and be me. I think people often look at me a certain way due to my hairstyle. indeed i have often hidden behind this style and demeana.
i feel that in order to fully see myself as God see's me i need to remove the dreads. there is a real me under here that i want others to see. So in due course a couple of photo's will be posted. i have currently removed about 30 dreads and have 10 left!!! it is a process because the thought of just shaving it off would i think give me a coronary.
Whilst this seems to be about a hairstyle and possibly further vanity.. it is not. it is actually not something i am that comfortable doing and i am actually finding it hard to adjust. i am somehow feeling it me me growing up a little, even turning into a man :)
It goes back to some of an earlier blog regarding the affirmation we need from others. i love the India Arie song 'i am not my hair'. my hope is that i am accepted for me and not a persona that i portray.

Thought for the day.

i have some thoughts i am formulating, partially about Christian views on morality ( namley same sex relationships) i have also just started reading a book on human evil, by M Scott Peck.

At the outset of this book it has a quote about what being a true Christian is. The whole concept of being open to ones own downfalls is a crucial part of self discovery and human development.
The quote is from a letter written by Saint Theresa of Lysieux
If you are willing to serenely bear the trial of being displeasing to yourself, then you will be for Jesus a pleasant place of shelter'

M Scott Peck's tentative definition of a true Christian is anyone who 'for Jesus a pleasent place of shelter'. He goes on to say that there are some in churches not willing to be displeasing to themselves and yet are many Hindu's, Buddhists, muslims, Jews, Atheists and agnostics that are willing to bear that trial.

It is not for some to be offended by this but to take on the challenge.
The concept of purging society of evil begins in our own hearts and journeys. In the film/book/ play of the Crucible the extreme religious strived to rid their towns of evil. In the process inviting and producing great evil.

it may be a while before i formulate ideas on this subject as the book warns it is an area known littel about and needs to be handled with great care and gentleness.
One thing i do know is that ' i will look at the plank in my own eye, before taking the splinter out of my brothers' .
speak soon... Michael :)

Wednesday, 3 September 2008

boat parties and no sleep...

partying hard again so no time for inspirational blogs just yet.. let just say all work and play and no sleep makes jack a crazy boy!!!

i have had 20 hours sleep in the last 120 hours.. and most have been hour here 2 hours there.. many people have asked how i keep going.. many workers think i must use drugs as they do.. sweets is the answer.. plenty of sugar and water.... i have seen two sunrises in the past couple of days... there is something very special about being up all night and experiencing the break of a new day.. especially if you are out at sea with 200 mad partiers , blaring music and beautiful little islands to gaze at.
will endeavor to bring wisdom next time.. for now bare with me and keep reading :)

Sunday, 24 August 2008

Fairly short entry at 5.45 am...

i have never partied so hard as this weekend, 30 hours out at parties and 15 hours solid dancing... some video evidence check out http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=506897071#/video/video.php?v=32555097188
can;t actually believe how many drugs were available and consumed.. one girl alone i met had done ketamine, GHB, cocaine, cb2 (ecstacy and acid) and mdma as well as the usual fags and booze.. she actually looked completely together!!! don't get it myself.. they all seem to love it
...anyway met loads of great people and had a stonking good time : >)

Saturday, 16 August 2008

Beauty to darkness and back

After the beauty that was yesterday, at night 4am, having just dropped to sleep, got a call to say we were needed to help a girl in the west end.. being on call and bleary eyed, Katrina and i headed into the centre. We got there 20 minutes later to find she had just gone with some guys helping her. We set off looking for her and instead were directed to another girl, who had been raped in door way and left half naked, a worker had found her and was helping and had already assisted by getting a lift organised. we set off again looking for the other girl to find a big crowd, in the middle was a guy face down with a pool of blood. There had been a fight and so we assisted calming people down and providing tissues. the police soon arrived and called for a medic, by this time the guy had come round and was talking and ok. Again we walked on and saw others we could help, most helped by friends and were okay. we ended up chatting to workers until 6am which was great. Whilst our original call did not work out, our presence at a dark moment was i feel needed.
I am alarmed by the truth of what sometimes happens here. Without wanting to alarm you This week i have encountered and heard true reports from the past weeks here in San An of a girl raped, as two guys tried to intervene the attacker stabbed the girl and ran off. Another worker had to leave having been gang raped by some other guys. The other night as probably every night a drunk guy was robbed as he lay on the pavement. A guy died after taking 7 ecstasy tablets and 9 the night before. We also encountered a guy who was o drunk he had eaten half his dirty flip flop!! (My prayer and compassion go out to them and their loved ones.)
Today we went to a beautiful beach, hang out with friends and appreciated the beautiful idyllic waters of the Mediterranean.

Thought for the day
I was, at 3 am last night, questioning why i have the compulsion to always tell people that their savory snacks have MSG Mono Sodium Glutamate) in them. I think i arrived at the answer that it is my desire for people to know the truth.
This kind of comment can produce different responses in people. Some react ' i don't wish to know that' ' i was enjoying those until you told me that'. Others may say " really" and just carry on happily eating.

Truth is something i am reading about in Jeremy Mark's new book 'Exchanging the truth for a lie (a journey on the subject of Homosexuality and same sex partnerships). i hope to add some thought on this in coming weeks. But for now back to the crisps...

Interesting to think about those above responses and maybe relate them to how we encounter truth people share with us. Which response has the most integrity? the one that says i will carry on regardless or the other that says i was happy in my blissful ignorance (to put it bluntly)... I believe in informed choice and all i want to say is Well done Hula Hoops for putting 'No MSG' on your packs and shame on you Doritos, Pringles, Frazzles and smith's square crisps... your time will come!!

I think my question to people is usually " Do you Know?', or 'have you heard that...?' Not 'Do you want to know?' I like to speak the truth sometimes weather people want it or not (and i hope it is motivated by genuine concern or Love and i hope i don't force my little comments on people at inopportune or untimely moments.)
Learning together can be beautiful if we are open.

I am open to learning many more Truths...

Friday, 15 August 2008

Ibiza Beauty

Ibiza is a place of amazing beauty.

Beautiful people beautiful places, beautiful sunsets, music, fashion and spirit.

I spent a great day visiting Es Vedera with my beautiful friend Jessica from the UK. We spent some time on the beach and had a moment meditating trying to escape the anxieties of the busy island, which was awesome. We then walked the steep hill climb to the lookout the at one of the off islands. This is a place that really clears your head and your thoughts. (see pics)

Today i was working in the centre. As my car is a currently out of action have started getting the ferry across the bay. Unfortunately today was a public holiday so after a while we realised the ferry's were not in action either. As we waited I noticed some small waves rolling in and i wished to be surfing again. In the centre a worker came in and asked me if there was any surf on the island, i said i had heard there was at times, but in winter. We checked it out online and i thought be great to do that at the end of the season. i got back home at 8 and went for a little run along the coastline as the sun went down. I couldn't believe my eyes when 1/2 a mile from my house i saw 4 guys surfing beautiful waves in the sunset surf!!! Yes surfing in Ibiza, oh my goodness this is heaven on earth. Unfortunately was getting too dark to go home and get the surf boards out.. the guys there told me it was a freak one off and would be gone tomorrow, but i live in hope!!

Next time i will bring some deeper thoughts to the page, but wanted to get a bit of balance for those who agree with my sentiment that 'too much thinking hurts'.

Redness and tinges of white...

so sorry for the delayed entry, what with heading back to the uk for the weekend, not much time to settle. so 3 for 1 today... going back
Wednesday 6th Aug- the night before i disembarked we had another night in the west end. We had the very popular Garlands club night at Eden. We were due to finish on he streets early and ake the Irish team out.
Firstly we walked the west end and met some cool people. then we got a phone call to say that a guy was in need of help. We got there and team already on hand. a guy had fallen, hit a parked car and cut his head open, fortunately it was my car he had fallen on, so not a problem to bundle him off to the medical centre. we managed to get to the club on time, but just before had a call out for a guy we had helped on previous nights, we could find him so got changed in our garland glad rags . as we were about to go in i spotted the guy outside, me and Brice felt obligated to get him home, plus one of the workers had spent two hours with him already. he was really badly sunburt, bright red and peeling everywhere as he insisted on hugging us all the way hime. we managed to get him to his hiotel room, upon which he decided to down a massive glass of red aftershock which sent him spinning round the room. we left him with his mates and headed back to the club to join the team for the last hour. We got in about 5.30 and danced to the song of the summer 'man with the red face' by Laurent Garnier. No sooner had the sing finished and anquaintence, a young lady worker, stepped on to the dancefloor next to me. her friends looked down and seemed perplexed, i looked down and in horror just saw blood spurting from her ankle. within seconds blood covered the dancefloor. i ran to get a first aid kit which the staff would not give me, by this time her friend had picked her up and carried her out, i grabbed my white wrist band and put it on the open wound. She had stepped onto a broken glass which had torn through her leather shoe and into her ankle. We managed to get her to the medical centre, her white shoe full of blood and my white top now a red and white mess. greatfully she was fine and i found out from Nurse friend amy after that people seem like they bleed a lot more when drunk as it thins the blood. She did but was fortunatley all good in the end.

This sets me up nicely for a little review of the Gettin Hectic Red and White Ball in Dulwich statley home.
i arrived home friday and stayed at my parents, in Guildford. Loaded up the car Saturday morning with nic and headed for Dulwich, 23 hours later we were home. What a great 23 hours it was.. a sea of red and white (see photos) Amy Tollington and Rich Watkins came up to support me by singing and rapping over my dj set, it really added something and was a fantastic musical affair. nic was great as usual lugging equipment and generally helping out. we finished the night chillin at someones house talking of love, life and deeper things till the sun came up.
Sunday was my parents anniversary. So after getting up at 3, seeing ben and beccy edmonds cute addition to the planets infants, Daisy, i headed for a meal with my parents. Their humility and continued approach of 'you are always learning in life' still impresses me, mum challenging her lifestyle and dad trying to be a more loving husband... great role modelling.. to top it all off mum cooked me a great Steak and Kidney pie before returning to ibiza on monday. I got in at 1am and was in the worlds biggest club from 3-7 am watching Tiesto(worlds number one dj). what a wierd contrast, to one minute be having a home cooked meal with loved ones and a few hours later the other side of europe with 10'000 manic party people. Its good to be back in the red hot sun!!!

Tuesday, 5 August 2008

check it out

audio bullies... break down the doors... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a_z6XhrW0-Q

God is a DJ

hi all
this week things have been hotting up in Ibiza. The weather is scorchio and things seem to be a little more exciting. i am due back in the UK this weekend to Dj at the Gettin Hectic summer red ball. Check out www.gettinhectic-club.co.uk for details. i am doing the 6-7 sunset slot and 2-4 main room set. Think Amy tollington and rich watkins are singing and rapping with me too. Gonna be strange to be back and then come out again straight away for two more months.
Also it is my parents 40th wedding anniversary on Sunday... well done Pete and Pat you have done yourselves proud :) No seriously if you don't know them my parents are the most sacrificial ,selfless people i know, always putting others first, which i guess is a good value for a long lasting marriage. It is great that i am able to be back as my sister ( Anna) is in Cyprus for the summer visiting her boyfriend Andy.
So back to ibiza. we were all in a little daily prayer time the other day and this doesn't often happen, but i had this song flash into my mind, one is didn't know well. It was a dance tune called 'Gonna break down the doors'. Bruce immediately informed me it was by the Audio Bullies and so i downloaded it right away. The words seemed so spot on for what we are doing here.
We used it the next night to focus our thoughts before hitting the sweltering, night time streets with the new Northern Irish team. We were all filled with expectation and excitement after this session. feeling like something fresh is brewing. The first line of the song is 'enter the darkness, the beats marching in.... this is the start of something... its gonna break down the doors'
As a Christian our belief is that we are in a battle of some description, darkness obviously represents evil in some form. We do not have a battle against people but against what we may call strongholds (things that hold people back from living the happy and joyful life that God created). Often we pray for protection as we come across some dangerous situations, things can appear like fun, light or good and then not turn out so. There it a lot that is unseen here. As the new team ventured out of the prayer room for there first time on the streets ' entering the darkness, they turned back to shout that there had been a huge power cut blacking out the whole of the west end. This was an unusual and remarkable experience with no music or light in the busiest strip of the night life hub. Could have been coincidence but it didn't feel like it.
We are excited.
We spent the evening helping vulnerable people, girl who had been separated from friends and been harassed by a bunch of guys, a very drunk 19 year old that we picked up from the hospital. Again we were told we were angels, good Samaritans. I found it amusing the other day when a girl called our Batphone. She didn't know i had heard her, but she said to the guy she was helping, 'don't worry mate they are God Squad, they will sort you out' never heard that phrase used in a positive way before :)

a number of people have said to me i sound like i am being hard or negative about myself in this blog and that i am doing a great job. Thanks for that, i suppose i is just finding a place in my heart that does not fill me with the pious pride of look at me, how good i am, cos actually i am no more so than any of you. We all have the capacity for kindness and compassion.

Dorathy Day said...' don't call us saints, we don't want to be dismissed that easily'.

Saturday, 2 August 2008



Had our weekly lads time today, where 3 of us get together to talk about man issues. Today we talked about mastication ( yes you read right) the process of salivation in the mouth when chewing… during this time we also chatted about the need for affirmation and how we humans are actually really swayed by the opinion of others.
I was reminded of the night I went out with Jon, the current night club chaplain, in Bournemouth. The first person he introduced me to he said , “this is Michael my replacement”, the Bouncer looked me up and down and said, “what swampy is gonna take over, eco warrior here??!!” that was a nice introduction. Then a second person took to me negatively. Obviously filling Jon’s shoes is gonna be tough, but the initial experience of negative comment could easily rock me. I have become aware how easily peoples opinion/comments affect me. The need for affirmation is subtle but great and I think is a big factor in a lot of things we do in society. How nice was it at Pacha (the worlds best night club) last night when 3 different people said how cool my Addict hat was (thanks for the hat Chris), or how nice it is to be called such a good person, 12 times in one night by drunken party revelers.

Tonight we were out on the San Antonio streets. It is amazing how alcohol and drugs can reduce the, ordinarily, civilized person into a gibbering wreck who can’t even say their name let alone remember where they are staying. Tonight was no exception. We help a guy, cleaned his nose, stood with him as he wet himself and generally took care of him and he cried, mostly of embarrassment. He was so much harder on myself than we were toward him. We tried for over 3 hours to establish where he was staying. Took him round to two possible hotels. We took him round the streets to see if he remembered things, took him to the bar he got kicked out of. The barman their who is not sympathetic of our cause started shouting at me, “save me save me pray for my soul”… and as I walked out, he shouted “have you got holes in your feet?” Another girl told me i was wasting my time with people like that. Exhausted and slightly overwhelmed we tried one more time at a famous Ibiza hotel to chat with reception staff to establish where he was staying, it was at that moment that I heard the encouraging words “swampy, what you doin at this hotel?" I turned patiently and extended my hand saying, my name is Michael not swampy” to be honest I had to find it amusing just how blatant this insult was in light of the earlier lads conversation.

In my foundations and beliefs I have to remember what and who I am doing this work for. I still can’t tell someone fully about my faith through fear of what they may say, even though many drunk people have no problem shouting ‘Jesus Loves you’ it at us as we drive the van though San An…maybe one day I will be secure enough in myself and my faith to be honest about what I really think, but for now I will extend the hand of patience and kindness and let my action talk. I might even get to point one day where i can wear a 'Jesus Rocks' belt!!?? (joke for the trendy among you)

I am no saint, and have need to be respected, affirmed and accepted by others as many of us do.
In his book ‘ Do nothing to change your life. Stephen Cotrell suggests that society in one voice says we need to accept ourselves, love ourselves etc and in the next is selling us all kinds of images, potions, diets and regimes that we should be aiming for. This ends up with us striving to be a different way, we strive for perfection in the search for a better me. Ultimately leads to a realisation that actually we don’t like ourselves very much an maybe we even want to be someone else. He suggests the only way to combat this is to put something else at the centre of our existence, instead of the self.
He suggests putting God in the centre is the best way. He goes on to say that it does not mean we have something missing ie. A God shaped hole in our lives. But that by realigning our compass, we discover that putting something else at the centre brings a whole new perpective and creative energy that we will not find in ourselves.

I like these ideas and I want to have someone else at the centre rather than me, if I am the centre of the universe, it can’t be a very interesting place!!! Maybe I have to learn to love myself another way…

Friday, 25 July 2008

The weekend begins

so another entry... unlike england the week days here are the busier nights. We go out on the streets Monday to Thursday and by all accounts this week has been exceptionally busy and messy.
On one night we had to help over 15 people get home, unable to do so for themselves. Three or four needed serious medical attention. The incident that remains with me is that of a Scottish girl out with her friends. She only had two drinks that night but was in a very distressed state. She was convulsing, her jaw and eyes twitching, muscles contracting, high pulse rate and hysterical at moments. Her friends did not know what to do and were lost trying to find the medical centre. We stayed with them, calmed the girl and called the 'batphone'. Then along came Helen and another team member with the van to assist. We managed to get her safely with her 5 friends to the medical centre. I was astonished to really see a certain case of spiking. i had thought it was sure to be guys, but apparently also Spanish women spike girls in order to rob them. Incidentally these girls had been mugged and robbed already in there 4 day visit here. We saw the girl the following night, looking healthy and bright, but her and her friends staying in through fear of further occurrences.
Ibiza is a beautiful island, with many hidden treasures. It is also a dark place at times, with many who are vulnerable and feeling alone. We are still being told we are angels, heaven sent...and maybe we are, but actually we all can be heaven to each other if we so desire. It just takes for us to change our centre from us to ' other'.

Thought for the day
Reputation is an interesting one. Who do we represent...Ourselves, family, organisation, Christian charity, our country??
i was struck yesterday by 3 separate comments that the English are idiots, hated by others, the trouble makers. That saddened me. Of the workers in the centre of San Antonio, most of the black workers are either drug dealers or prostitutes. Most from Morocco or Senegal, what do they do to the reputation of their countrymen of race? We have heard of Black tourists getting a hard time from Police as suspects of dealing drugs. Poor guys being harassed, not just because of the colour of their skin, but because of those who have ruined reputation for others? Another PR said she had been asked by her Bar manager not to let Italians, blacks, or Spanish into the bar as they were all robbers. She protested as it seemed racist and unfair, maybe it was? Why did the bar owner feel the need to do that? I am not sure what to think, maybe we don't need to blame?
Maybe we can think about who we represent by our actions, who our actions affect.
I really struggle with this as in the Christian context there is almost an unspoken pressure to portray perfection. I actually think the words of God asks us to model weakness, not perfection.
I am in no way perfect and whilst i may seek to live in a pure way, i will always fall short.
So if i am going to let others down by my failings, what can i do to save reputation.
One answer could be to admit when i am wrong, acknowledge my weakness, seek forgiveness from those i harm and move on making an effort to turn to a different way next time???
any other suggestions i would be happy to receive :)

Sunday, 20 July 2008

quick Rant

hi all, sorry about this, but just been to Space ( the club, not been taking anything i can assure you) i had forgotten how annoying smoking is in clubs. and what on earth posses people to walk into the middle of a crowded dancefloor, not really wanting to dance, standing right in front of you the the heat and haze and sparking up waving that fag around in the air liek they just dont care.

Oh just so happened that on the dancefloor in question came face to face with another ex pupil of mine, he was someone i worked a lot with a few years back. 2 ex pupils in 2 weeks is a little more than coincidental i feel, but anyway, i hope Eddie is coming into the 24/7 centre to see me tomorrow :)

Thursday, 17 July 2008

A message to take to the streets?

We have power in our hands
power to change
power to end poverty
to stand and speak of tragedy
To name the beauty
to understand and reason or to ignore and hide

We have power to create and re-create,
to define and re-define

To act justly upon the world is to see the 'OTHER' bigger than the 'self'
To attempt to understand and move a little when we get there
To make space, to be alive, to be Free

To be told is little fun, but to learn is exhilarating
To strive is exhausting
but to BE is.


A nice lad but led astray
Grandad says "he did not used to be this way,
there's nothing for the youth today,
you need to get a grip before it's too late"
He doesn't realise the cannabis haze
that makes his Grandchild lost for days,
Going to school is the least of his worries,
it's all about the weed, the escape with his buddies

He sits in front of a screen, life flashing before him
by distractions he is dreaming
there is no real reason or logical meaning
except for the fear from those that are terrorising.
Scared to go out or even look up
no words to say just silently stuck

Beauty trapped and caged
alone and unwell at such a young age
cradling her unborn child
finding it hard to produce a smile
abandoned to face new life on her own
removed from friends and all her plans torn

Making choices, facing fears, helping wipe away the tears
Giving options finding hope, positive veiws to help them cope

Beautiful sunsets, stars and faces.
Distraction help me to escape this.
Sleep, food, prayer and songs help my days to carry on.


Tuesday, 15 July 2008

ibiza week 1

Been here just over a week now. Currently 8 of us living in the house together. there is a real mix of cultures and backgrounds here in our little community which is great. German, Swiss, Australian, English and Irish. Been cool to here people praying and talking in different languages and appreciating the diversity of human nature.
Been to Bora Bora and Eden for my first Dance sessions. Both were great and really connected with others there. Getting familiar with lots of the workers out here, which makes me feel much more part of the whole scene. They really have admiration and trust us in helping people in the west end of san antonio. Last night we were having a nice chat with some lads and a worker came over and asked for our help. (we basically go round in pairs in 24/7 t shirts whilst other stay behind in the centre to pray). A guy was sat in a chair outside kfc with literally 40 party revellers chanting "you're shit you're shit" at him. He was a bit out of it, but not the worst i have seen and was awake enough. They had tied his shoe laces together and put ice cream in his hair. They had also humiliated him by getting his John Thomas out for all to see. I went with Sasha from Ireland and stood int he middle of the crowd. They then turned the chant on us. We asked them to stop, turned to the guy and took him away from the situation. We cleaned him up with tissues from our medi bag. Then called the 24-7 puke wagon to come and get him. The leader Brain and another volunteer then took him back to his hotel. in the next 40 minutes we found two others unable to look after themselves and another girl who had been robbed.
PEOPLE CAN BE CRUEL, at times prey on the weak and vulnerable.
My reason for telling this is not for the great story or the glory. But to give a flavour of the nightly occurances that keep us needed here.

Thought for the day

One amazing thing is how accepting the workers are here of our Christian team. in fact they don't stop telling us how much they respect us for what we are doing. daily comments are 'There should be more people like you on the planet', 'i couldn't do what you guys do', 'You are angels'. This can serve the Ego very well, but has actually been getting to me a little frustrated. On one hand it is totally great that both workers and tourists acknowledge that there may be greater things in life than just getting wasted. That people are in need here. That people need saving at times. Mother Teresa was once told that she was a Saint. She responded that ...by elevating her to that position just in fact got others off the hook. She at another time said that "we do no great things just small things with great love" which we are all capable of.

Saturday, 12 July 2008

First day in Ibiza.

Well felt very welcomed by the team and had a little team meeting prayer session. I met up with nic from Guildford ,who was over here, in town and had a good chat with him, went to the prayer room for a quick visit and ended up spending ages talking with this girl who wanted help. She had been homeless in Ibiza 5 days and had been raped the night before. She had an alcohol problem and had burnt all her bridges back home. after we had helped with some practical issues and some aid in getting a different perspective, Bruce offered to pray for her, she burst into tears, saying that that is what her family did for her in England, she sat there thumb in mouth as we said a small prayer and felt much more peaceful after.

My learning from this was more about how I could really develop a kind of hero complex in this kind of work, but one thing struck me. The girl said… others had offered some help but no one had really listened to her. The team managed to get her a flight back home and get her to the airport.

think it is gonna be crazy here, lots more stories to come !!!

France and beyond...

Entry 3

The journey to Spain begins. Ok so to start I did the Biarritz to Barcelona trip in 6 hours and seeing as though I allowed 12 I had time to use… I parked in a the worlds most expensive car park and headed off up the famous Las Ramblas. One or two mime artists later, I decided to head off the well-worn track and go side street style. You don’t really see a city until you see the side alleys, even just one street away from the tourist hustle and bustle you see homeless guys, shady characters emptying handbags out in bins, tattoo parlours and hidden fetish shops, as well as some bone chilling looks from the inhabitants.

Ended up in Barcolanetta, a great beach spot frequented by many of the cities beautiful and Gay population and a few old leather skinned men in thongs. Obviously why I went there. Actually when I arrived I found you can surf in Barcelona, was tempted to sprint back the 4 miles I had walked and get the surf board but time was not on my side so watched and daydreamed. Actually really nice to have a day alone before the mayhem begins , love Barcelona and Spain for that matter. .
The evening was crazy with the Spanish police escorting our ferry convoy through Barcelona, stopping all other traffic, the chaos was laughable, Now on the ferry upgraded by myself until someone finds me in the wrong seat J

Thought for the day.

Ongoing consideration of the negative thought process… I think I am still so easily brought back into the cycle of needing affirmation from others. A few setbacks and escapist thoughts and I am right there in the thick of “ I need to feel special” time.
One solution is to meditate on the words of God in the bible. Trying to promote positive thoughts. One is to search inside and understand the root of the problem so I can deal with it. Another is to find a distraction from the distraction or maybe even just get on with something else. Or I could just see it as not that big a deal not dwell on it and just get on with it.. Who can add any more time to there lives by worrying hey??

A few weeks ago all this seemed very simple and I don’t think my mind ha fully caught up with what is about to happen. My dream last night of stabbing a friend in the nose, getting peed on by another friend and leaving piles of rubbish for my parents and sister to clean up .. actually waking up with my gums bleeding cos I had been clenching my teeth so hard in the night!!! may give some description of the turmoil of my mind at this point… glad it was a dream though, the gums I can deal with : o
It is amazing how quickly my/our minds can change, one minute all positive, no concern, the next confusion and dissatisfaction.
I give it to God in Prayer.

France and beyond...

Entry 3

The journey to Spain begins. Ok so to start I did the Biarritz to Barcelona trip in 6 hours and seeing as though I allowed 12 I had time to use… I parked in a the worlds most expensive car park and headed off up the famous Las Ramblas. One or two mime artists later, I decided to head off the well-worn track and go side street style. You don’t really see a city until you see the side alleys, even just one street away from the tourist hustle and bustle you see homeless guys, shady characters emptying handbags out in bins, tattoo parlours and hidden fetish shops, as well as some bone chilling looks from the inhabitants.

Ended up in Barcolanetta, a great beach spot frequented by many of the cities beautiful and Gay population and a few old leather skinned men in thongs. Obviously why I went there. Actually when I arrived I found you can surf in Barcelona, was tempted to sprint back the 4 miles I had walked and get the surf board but time was not on my side so watched and daydreamed. Actually really nice to have a day alone before the mayhem begins , love Barcelona and Spain for that matter. .
The evening was crazy with the Spanish police escorting our ferry convoy through Barcelona, stopping all other traffic, the chaos was laughable, Now on the ferry upgraded by myself until someone finds me in the wrong seat J

Thought for the day.

Ongoing consideration of the negative thought process… I think I am still so easily brought back into the cycle of needing affirmation from others. A few setbacks and escapist thoughts and I am right there in the thick of “ I need to feel special” time.
One solution is to meditate on the words of God in the bible. Trying to promote positive thoughts. One is to search inside and understand the root of the problem so I can deal with it. Another is to find a distraction from the distraction or maybe even just get on with something else. Or I could just see it as not that big a deal not dwell on it and just get on with it.. Who can add any more time to there lives by worrying hey??

A few weeks ago all this seemed very simple and I don’t think my mind ha fully caught up with what is about to happen. My dream last night of stabbing a friend in the nose, getting peed on by another friend and leaving piles of rubbish for my parents and sister to clean up .. actually waking up with my gums bleeding cos I had been clenching my teeth so hard in the night!!! may give some description of the turmoil of my mind at this point… glad it was a dream though, the gums I can deal with : o
It is amazing how quickly my/our minds can change, one minute all positive, no concern, the next confusion and dissatisfaction.
I give it to God in Prayer.

France 2

So been in France nearly a week, beautiful blue sky, surf, relaxing having a really nice time. Been surfing most days and all should be peachy… so why then am I starting to get negative and even a little down on things.

Maybe it is that I am stopping after a whirlwind of goodbyes, organising and expectation?? But i think I am discovering more what it is about…

I think for months now I have been filled with positive thoughts and excitement about these changes in my life. But in the last week a few doubts have started creeping in. Not so sure anymore?? What if it is all a waste of time, what am I trying to achieve anyway?
I guess number one thing is that ll this is happening cos, it did just kind of happen. I also feel like I am being obedient to God in doing this. Although some may think this is ideal for me and a dream, maybe it is in part but it is also a big sacrifice and more to the point a total unknown. Now for someone who likes to be in control this is scary. How will I have a relationship in this lifestyle? How will I sort out issues with my house, will my money last? What about all my friends and pet fish back home?

Thought for the day
Doubts seem to lead me to fear, which leads me to question, which leads me to negative thoughts about myself, my future and my life.
In the book of James (bible) he says a double minded person gets blown around and tossed by the wind, doubting creates this. I have been blown around by the surf this week, both literally and mentally. This passage was in the book I was reading today and my bible reading notes which I just started today, very timely!!
I am sure of my path and sticking to it regardless of niggling thoughts.
What a beautiful blue sky outside, I am just gonna sit back and enjoy the ride.


Day one 25th June – ROAD TRIP… music, ‘Coffee Break Spanish’ and banter.
Had a a weird start, where the day before leaving for France with mates Chris and Jim, Jim calls to say he is not coming due to a great opportunity at work L Chris then checks his flights and finds he has not actually booked them due a Ryan air error and no more flights are available. I then check my Ferry to see if Chris can come with me and find all Ferries have been cancelled. !!!!! is this a sign we shouldn’t go?? No… we booked the euro tunnel and set of Wednesday afternoon, good trip good hotel, Chris tried to scare me by hiding in the cupboard, did a little.
750 miles later got to the Band B. Only got flashed by one speed camera :-/ The place is as Fresh and familiar as when we visited last year… SURFS UP !!!!
Very motivated about learning Spanish right now and have embarked on reading a children’s school book to help me, I get to colour in and everything.

My friends and family were so amazing to me before I left. So many kind, encouraging words, I don’t think the whole leaving thing has hit me yet, it will I am sure.. parents bought me an awesome Sat Nav and sis bought me an Ipod..so cool.

Well we also brought the rain with us, clouds when we arrived and a massive thunder storm. Lets hope for better things.

Thought of the day.

Read some of a Joyce Mayer book, Battlefield of the mind. I find it hard to see why some Christians have to super spiritualise things? This book in particular outlines how ‘our enemy the Devil’ seeks to infiltrate our minds and cause us to have thoughts that could damage us. She illustrates this by using an example of a woman who nags her husband, her comments are that due to experiences in her childhood Satan has bombarded her with thoughts about how bad men are, this is why she behaves this way.

I did not dispute and actually agree that there are spiritual forces at work and indeed our battle at times is not against people, but unseen things but I find it hard to ignore the immense depth of psychological complexity that God created in us. By this I mean that he made us human, this means that we become conditioned by experiences both at an early age but also by repetitive cycles in later life. To say the devil pursues each one of us in order to damage our minds is a little extreme. And in fact in my understanding this is theologically incorrect. I understand that Satan himself is not omnipresent (everywhere at once) and although he probably has his minions, it is probably not as Joyce says ‘Satan has been brainwashing Mary for years”. I think it is more like spiritual forces are a contributory factor to our struggles and our triumphs. Not to be taken lightly , but not to be a preoccupation that can take life from us.

Language is a powerful thing and I wish us Christians were more careful how we used it.
Hasta Pronto

First Entry from Ibiza

okay, so this a blog right?? well i have written 3 entries so i am gonna start with those. It will get you up to date with my thoughts and current life style. I will try and vary my entries so you dont get bored and add some pics at some point. I want my blog to be interesting but am also using it to put some thoughts to paper. feel free to skip the thought of the day bit if you like as thinking sometimes hurts... so here goes, happy reading and feed back of you get bored :)