One of the joys of the internet is the chance to hook up with people from your past who, if you lived in the same vicinity, you’d have tea and deep chats with on a regular basis. Sadly, as teleporting hasn’t yet been invented, many potential wonderful friendships have to wait until we get Home, when eternity might give us the time to chew on straws in green lush meadows and reflect on the wonder of the new creation for a long time.
Until then blogging, twitter and facebook have their uses and I’ve been delighted to be back in touch with the lovely Tanya Marlow, who I still remember as a sparkly new fresher at Grey College Durham and was very glad she helped turn around our CU into more than a social club, even if she did invite houseparty speakers on their basis of hotness (this may or may not be true…). Our paths crossed again when working for UCCF and now we interact in this world of blogging. Tanya does things properly in this world and has regular series/posts and interacts well with others, I sporadically throw out some random thoughts every now and again with all my best intentions of regular posting generally going out of the window. Ah well, very kindly she’s asked me to contribute to her brilliant series on struggling and God and so I have shared my story. You can find it here.
It starts like this:
As I sit here wondering how to participate well in this excellent series on God and our struggles I find myself wishing my struggles in this life were more glamorous, more obvious, more dramatic. I wish they were more tangible and easily defined. My struggles in life are an ongoing slog, a battle that doesn’t always look understandable to me, let alone anyone else.
For as long as I can remember I’ve struggled with despair, with cynicism, with doubt and with the big question of ‘what on earth are we doing here’? For as long as I can remember I’ve lived on the darker side of life. As a teenager I went through the classic angst, the dark poems, the despair, the wondering what the point of all this is and those thoughts have never left me. I’ve wished that them leaving was a matter of growing up but it’s been 20 years now and I still taste melancholy, darkness and despair on a regular basis. Read on
I think, and don’t quote me on this that this is the beginning of a series this week on my blog about Acedia, the noonday demon. I’ve just finished Kathleen Norris’ excellent book on it and plan to quote extensively from that so I can process some of what I’ve learning. This guest post provides the context for that. (having said all that I was going to start this yesterday and spent the day staring at the wall in despair, ironic eh.).