Life’s loving motivators.

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As I looked at the assault course in front of me all I could think was this:

‘It’s total wipeout NI edition and I’m going to die.’

Yes I was being melodramatic, yes I could swim and yes I was thankful that if I weed myself in fright the water would hide the evidence.

At the same moment as being nervous I was also excited. It’d been a while since I took on a challenge that I wasn’t sure I could complete. We do that sometimes don’t we? Avoid the things that scare us and take on other things that we know we can accomplish with at least a little bit of confidence.

In my borrowed wetsuit I lined up to jump the 10ft drop into the icy water and with my brain telling me ‘nope!’ I told it to ‘shhh’ as I flung myself in.

Shortly after that, somewhere on the north coast of Northern Ireland on a huge inflatable assault course, I was doing my best beached hippo impression. My legs refused to propel me anywhere and my arms were far from cooperative as I tried to lug my not so petite frame onto the first actual obstacle! At that moment I was unsure what to do. Do I carry on, or do I maintain that I’m happy bobbing here in my life jacket with a cheery ‘you guys go on ahead!’ attitude?

My Upper body strength was non-existent, turns out my training schedule of writing and eating cake had not fully prepared me for the challenge. Note to self: get back to the gym!

But do you know something? I laughed so much! I learnt so much. I overcame a little bit of that voice in my head that told me I couldn’t and was helped along the way by two extraordinary women who loved me enough to drag my behind onto the inflatables and wouldn’t give up until I’d completed a circuit with them.

‘You can do it!’ became the phrase of the hour!

Confession: In moments of challenge I struggle asking for help.

My two crazy NI companions taught me something – that I should ask more and be unashamed to do so!

Doing things solo doesn’t always make you strong, it makes you alone.

Ironically I have a saying on my wall at home that says ‘If you want to go fast, go alone. If you want to go far, go together.’

Even more ironically my last blog post was on the same topic!

… for so many of us asking for help comes with a cost, the cost of our pride. Since that experience on the doorstep I’ve learnt that asking for help isn’t a failure, it’s an incredible strength. Allowing someone into your life to help you achieve something outside of your gifting is far from a weakness – it’s wisdom.

When will I learn to read signs (or re-read my own blog posts!)?  Turns out I’m a slow learner!

The literal obstacles in front of me meant I couldn’t go alone or fast, but with help, I could get further than I imagined.

And after I’d achieve the goal and jumped off a giant inflatable cliff hand in hand with my own personal cheer squad I felt awesome!

Some people possess the amazing gift of making you want to be a better person.

Not in a competitive sense but in the sense that you want just a little more of what they have. Whether it’s that extra capacity to love, their generosity, their optimism, they make you want to be more and do more in life.

These are life’s loving motivators. They’re rare, so if you find one, don’t let them disappear. No matter the distance or the time not speaking, check in with them again. (I mean it, get on it now!) As I’m proving in the blogosphere – we all need constant reminders and support to carry on through this life.

Our loving motivators in life are the ones that ‘bare with’ when you’re stuck, they hold out a hand to pull you through the next obstacle or become your biggest fan club in the moments that you face your own hurdle.

They’re not afraid to share their vulnerability with you, helping you be brave enough and strong enough to share your own.

These are the kinds of people that I want to be more like. I want to love more, have more patience, coach more, be one of life’s loving motivators.

Let’s face it, if there were more people who loved in the world there’d be less to fight about, more goals conquered and more lives transformed.

This work in progress girl has had an epic week.

She’s walked llamas, body-boarded for the first time, drunk her bodyweight in tea, had heart to hearts in power cuts, eaten cheesecake the size of her head, seen sunsets and rain storms, been challenged, loved and treated like family, walked the story of CS Lewis, enjoyed chicken with old friends and played boardgames with new ones and she’s been to Barry’s. (She’s also regained her NI accent in places!).

All in a weeks work when you’re friends with this amazing girl!

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Thanks Morrison 😉 x

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Get to it! #Kenya

Sometimes facing our fears is not just to prove a point to ourselves – it’s to inspire someone else so that they can be brave too.

I don’t know how long you’ve known me but, believe it or not, I used to be painfully shy. When I announced that I was going abroad with a team on mission the first time a good few people were shocked.

I wouldn’t have said boo to a goose back then, now I am learning day by day to be a little mouthier (in a good way!) and to encourage others – if I can do crazy things like this – so can you!

So yes, I am going to Kenya this time and I am SO EXCITED! It’ll be incredible to see another beautiful country and to no doubt learn so much more than I can process.

But remember, this isn’t some exclusive club, it’s about having a heart for people. I want to encourage you, if you have a desire in your heart to get out and see the world – go for it!  If you have a heart to change this crazy, hurting world – get to it!

Don’t let the desires of your heart remain on that bucket list!

Remember – being brave isn’t about feeling courageous at the time, often it’s looking back and seeing the journey you’ve come through, realising you’ve done something you never thought you could.

So sign up, get fundraising, volunteer, do whatever it is that’s gathering dust on the list. We are given precious little time on this earth to be the change so we need to take every opportunity.

And finally, know that you never go alone into any of these huge adventures. God loves you and goes with you, step by step.

 

If you’re looking to do something wild then check out :

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Or if you’d like to support my trip please visit here:

 

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Easter – Good Friday

Today’s the day my Jesus traveled to the cross. Officials couldn’t find his guilt but the crowd called for his crucifixion, he was mocked and made fun of, stripped, beaten, whipped, disfigured and a crown of thorns was rammed on his head. He was barely recognisable by the time he reached Golgotha (the place of the skull, where criminals were crucified) and then he was nailed to the wood and raised to be displayed to the onlookers. And yet, he still loved them, he still loved me.

On that cross he took the punishment that should have been mine. He took all sin, past, present and future, onto himself. He became a sacrifice for me to restore my relationship with God. So that when I was born years later a gift was already in place that all I needed to do was accept, the gift is life. But he did this not just for me – the gift is yours too, if you accept it.

When God made man in the beginning he never intended us to die, death was a symptom of that first sin in the garden and all of the sin since. The punishment for sin was death, that’s why before Jesus’ death and resurrection when people sinned they would sacrifice an animal to account for the sin.

But Jesus became the ultimate sacrifice, for all of us.

…. But the story isn’t over, Jesus didn’t remain dead. Friday night his body was taken and sealed into a borrowed tomb, surrounded by Roman guards.

To be continued…

It’s Friday, but Sunday is coming!

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Easter – Maundy Thursday

Today is the day my Jesus was betrayed. He was sold out for 30 silver pieces. Before he chose to go to the cross he left us with a way of remembering him a way to honour and acknowledge the sacrifice he made for us, all of us.

As he ate with the disciples that night, the night he was betrayed, he knew Judas would betray him, he knew Peter would deny he even knew him, he knew the other disciples would scatter out of fear, yet he still loved them.

After they had eaten Jesus took some bread and thanked God, his father, for it, he then broke it up into pieces and shared it round the disciples saying ‘Take, eat, this is my body.’

He then took a cup of wine thanked his father for it and told them to drink it, ‘this is my blood… poured out for the forgiveness of sins.’

What did he mean? His body? His blood? He meant this, the bread represented what was going to happen to his body, it would be broken, he would die. The wine represented his blood and how it would pour out of his body, taking his life, he became the final sacrifice for our sins.

But the best part of what happened was he didn’t stay dead! (That’s the best bit of Easter!)

Jesus told his disciples to share the bread and wine together as an act of remembrance until he returns, that’s why we take communion together today, to remember what Jesus did for us on the cross, to thank him for it, it’s an act of worship.

After they had shared communion together they sang a hymn of worship then left to go to the garden of Gethsemane. There Jesus prayed, He knew what was ahead of Him, He knew the journey he had to take. The journey to the cross.

Maundy Thursday – The last day Jesus would spend with his disciples before his death.

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#crossequalslove