Sunday, 23 October 2016

MYTH: Self-Talk is Overrated

"I AM" are possibly the two most powerful words because what you put after them shapes your reality. By your reality, I mean your thoughts, your attitudes and your actions. I wonder what, in this moment, you would say after the words "I am"...I wonder what you may have said yesterday after the words "I am"...I wonder what you may say for tomorrow?

We all fall into the trap of thinking that the thoughts we tell ourselves are fleeting and irrelevant. OR, are true and unchangeable. 

  • We have between 150 and 300 thoughts about and to ourselves per minute. That means around 30,000 per day.
  • 70% of these words are negative, and out of those 70%, 70% are subconscious thoughts that we tell ourselves, I.e. You aren't aware you\re having them.
  • Oh, and one more thing, you repeat the same things to yourself 95% of the time. So, it's more than likely that you're repeating those negative things about yourself to yourself.

Words have power. And although most of the time we don't speak words out loud to ourselves (although, no judgement if you do!), the thoughts we have are just as powerful because they're the words we're speaking to our inner selves which shape our outer reality.

Think about what would happen if you spoke to one of your closest friends, 21,000 negative words to them over a period of one day. Imagine the damage that would do. Imagine the lies that you would have to come up with to fulfil such a task. Imagine the effect that would have on their emotional health.

Positive self-talk is essential to our emotional health because our emotional health is a tapestry of mind, body, soul and spirit interwoven together.

However, positive self-talk can only begin with self-awareness: I.e. The awareness of what we're actually speaking to ourselves.

2 Corinthians 10:5 says "take every thought captive"

I love detective, spy, thriller, dramas. And so, I love this imagery because I imagine literally taking every thought captive by sitting it down, grilling and questioning it about its intentions and its origin, it's purposes and perceived power. By the way, I mean the thoughts you have when you catch the reflection of yourself in the mirror, when you make a mistake at school or work, when you think you overhear someone talking about you...

Only then do we become aware of what thoughts we're having, when we're intentionally looking out for them. Only then can we tell whether it's positive or negative and trade it for what is truth-speaking and life-fulfilling.

Start with self-awareness. Awaken your mind to the thoughts it has about your self. Speak what is truth, life and health-restoring to your mind, body, soul and spirit and you will begin the journey of self transformation which will seep into your attitudes and actions. 

I'll keep you posted. 

Friday, 14 October 2016

Why am I writing a book?

It's been 9 days since I had the absolute thrill and privilege of announcing my little book venture with SPCK Publishers and I thought it best to explain myself a little more?!

Why am I doing this? 

1. Because I can

Don't make the mistake of reading that subheading and clicking 'exit'. Let me explain!
We all struggle with self-doubt in some areas of life. The one subject I struggled the most with at school was English (shock, horror!) I vividly remember receiving a 'D' for my GCSE mock and feeling overwhelmed with feelings of failure. 

A few years ago I started this blog - nothing special, just sharing my pondering thoughts - and I realised that with every post I published I was releasing feelings of incompetency. 

Writing a book has always been an absolute dream of mine. 

I was approached by the visionary Juliet at SPCK and we brainstormed the ideas for this book. Part of me wanted to retreat and quit before I had the chance to fail. But I'm learning that if we don't embrace the 'crazy' or the 'risk', we don't realise the 'awesome' and the 'amazing'. 

I am competent. I am able. #THISGIRLCAN

So bring it. 

2. Because it's not about me

Seemingly ironic?! Well, one of the ways I've released feelings of incompetency about writing this book is by reminding myself that it's not about me, nor is it for me.

I'm so excited about what this book can proclaim to a generation of girls. It's for the girl who is trying to figure out who she is, the girl who looks in the mirror and hates what she sees, the girl of faith or of no faith. It's for the girl immersed in an image-conscious culture. It's for the girl who doesn't know her true value, beauty or purpose. 

I have faith that girls will rise with a new confidence about who they are. I have faith that girls will be inspired and equipped to follow their dreams. I have faith that a domino-effect is possible. 

And most of all, I have faith that God will use this book to touch the lives of those who need it most. 

3. Because now is the time

Writing has always been a dream of mine but I always imagined it as a far-off possibility not an imminent reality. Yet, I feel as if I have been called for 'such a time as this' (Esther 4:14).  

Whilst some may see my age as a liability, I see it as an asset. I am more relatable now than I will ever be. And right now, girls need to hear truth. 

Now is the time to 'go'. And nothing will get in my way or God's way.

Follow the journey by following @belle_ministry. 
I'll keep you posted.

Friday, 12 August 2016

What’s so bad about trying to be perfect?

Firstly, let me clear up that the reason I’m writing this is because of my own perfectionist tendencies that I am in the process of journeying through.

Let me also clear up that perfectionism is NOT a desirable trait. Our social media tendencies and consumerist driven culture imply that ‘having it all’ is the goal of life – and that it’s possible full stop! I.e. buy the next thing, get the next job, look a certain way and you’ll be a heck of a lot closer to ‘perfection’.

Here's a perfectly captured image for you to mull over.

Now healthy striving and conscientiousness is great, fantastic, admirable but when we base our esteem and identity on our constant pursuit for achievement, then we’re in trouble!

“Perfectionism is self-abuse of the highest order” – Anne Wilson Shaef

Seem a bit OTT? Let’s explore what perfectionism actually looks like:

Basing your self-esteem on whether you meet the impossibly tough goals/standards you set for yourself that aren’t practically achievable.

Do you see how that is like a self-fulfilling cycle of discontent? Like we’ll never see the top of the ladder…Kinda make sense?

So this may look like unrealistically high self-image standards, work standards, school standards, expectations of other people and/or over-focusing on mistakes and constantly trying to avoid the harsh standards of others, thus, strive for acceptance.

I mean I can see myself appearing at some level in a few of those categories…So what’s the problem with this kind of living?

According to Will Van der Hart and Rob Walker in ‘The Perfectionism Book(*highly recommend*), it consequently affects our feelings (anxiety, depression), bodily sensations (muscle tension, poor sleep…), brain functions (poor concentration, worry, low self-esteem), and behaviours (self-isolating, avoidance, over-exercising, narrow hobbies…)


Don’t panic. It’s a process and a journey.

For now, remember: strive healthily.

I hate to say it, but we're imperfect beings. Made whole through our relationship with God. We weren't made to rely on ourselves. 

"Jesus had come into the imperfection of our lives to demonstrate his power to save: we are delivered from our lives of brokenness because of God's love, not because of our goodness of merit." - Will Van der Hart

I believe I’m likely to have convinced you about ‘what’s so bad about trying to be perfect’…so for now, I’ll leave you with my thoughts. But – I’ll be back soon don’t you worry…

I'll keep you posted.

Monday, 1 August 2016


The masterpiece of our lives and the lives of others around us consists of more than what meets the eye. We live in a society that idolises image and promotes perfection - so we are prone to believe that as a picture paints a thousand words, so does the image we present. Yet what we don't always realise is that this picture itself is not necessarily reality as a whole.

I've had a few people come up to me and say how it seems like I'm having an amazing, incredible time in London - and whilst that's true - it's also been a battle.

Anxiety is something I can't admit to knowing loads about, what I do know is that anxious thoughts have crept into my mind since moving away from what seems safe, secure and sheltered. It's like a wave of uncertainty sweeps through my whole being and captures my mind. It can be silly things like whether I locked my car but can also escalate at times. It makes my brain go into over-drive about different situations and, in turn, it can feel easier to isolate myself instead of facing what seems like a mountain to climb. It's distracting and frustrating. My trigger was definitely the change involved in moving and becoming an actual 'adult' and being responsible for things?!

Despite this, I know that God is good. Being a Christian doesn't wrap you up in bubble wrap and keep you away from all these things - we still fight a battle, we're just not alone in it. I'm trying to take these thoughts captive and assess them against the truth of the word of God. 

Philippians 4:8-9: 'I'd say you'll do best by filling your minds and meditating on things true, noble, reputable, authentic, compelling, gracious - the best, not the worst; the beautiful, not the ugly; things to praise, not things to curse...Do that, and God, who makes everything work together, will work you into his most excellent harmonies.'

I'm thankful that this is an opportunity to develop a resilient mind, to relate to others and to rest in God. I'm thankful that I know He is strong enough for me to admit my challenges. 

We sometimes paint our lives - in conversation or on social media - as creative, beautiful, inspiring and imaginative. Yet, inseparable with living out this kind of life are experiences of resilience, tenacity, discipline and perseverance. 
The lives that we, and people present are a tapestry of moments, challenges and experiences. It's the same as the story behind a masterpiece involving the skill and technique of the masters hand, his patience, perseverance and endurance, the quality and use of specific materials and his gifted and stewarded imagination and creativity.

We cannot reduce people down to the immediate visual of their life - there is more behind someone's story than what it may seem. 

I'll keep you posted.

Friday, 3 June 2016

Instagram is threatening your Self-Esteem

I decided to research the effect of Instagram on self-esteem for teenage girls (11-18 yrs old)

Here's what I found from 100 participants:

Edited version of The Rosenberg Scale 
According to Rosenberg’s system, it would be ‘correct’ to suggest that Instagram evokes a feeling of ‘normal’ self-esteem as on the whole it received a score of 55% (where below 50% is considered low)HOWEVER, what is shocking is that actually, Instagram is 5% away from correlating with ‘low’ self-esteem for teenage girls. We cannot conclude that Instagram helps to influence a ‘normal’ self-esteem when the proximity is so close to ‘low’ in this case. What defines ‘normal’ anyhow? I will conclude that Instagram is threatening to self-esteem, i.e. to be something that is likely to cause harm to someone or something.

A statistic that stood out was that a majority agreed that ‘Instagram makes me feel useless at times’, and there was an indecisive conclusion as to ‘Instagram makes me feel like a person of worth’ (41% disagreeing and 41% agreeing). I would like to be so bold as to suggest that as a society, we are confused about the implications of Instagram for our self-esteem, i.e. there is a fine line between what we may consider as positive or negative.

Further research showed the following:
The reason for the two versions is because, at first sight it seemed 52% believe Instagram has a positive effect on their self-esteem (great news right?!) HOWEVER, when I looked at the reasons why girls thought it was positive/negative (from the question that followed), the results were shocking.

The weight of the reasoning from those who suggested Instagram has a negative effect on their self-esteem is heavier than those who incorrectly believe it to be positive.

All I want is to look like them, be like them, do what they do but I know I will never get to’ 
Explanations of ‘comparison’ arose in 43% of participants’ responses as a reason for its negative effect. The element of comparison is consistent throughout all research undertook (e.g. the main reason for the use of Instagram: ‘to see what other people are doing’). The elements threatening to self-esteem is the admitted inaccurate representation of one’s life[1], that “some people…totally change what they look like”[2] and the extent to which we’re exposed to Instagram, ‘consistently throughout the day’ (also results from my research). Instagram promotes pixilated perfection: pixilated, sometimes unattainable, perfection (in terms of image, travel, achievement, lifestyle, fashion etc.) Our perception of the lives of others is distorted and thus the perception of the value of our own lives is distorted, i.e. we compare our backstage to someone else’s edited, filtered, highlight reel. As seen by this participant’s response (and others responses), the awareness that what people post on Instagram is unattainable seems known, yet how to stop it affecting how we view ourselves is unknown.

‘People put comments saying that you are not worth living and it takes a toll of your self-confidence’
The anonymous, digital relationships on Instagram allow anonymous, digital expression of opinion (whether valid or not). Psychologists express that “your ideas about what others think of you hinge on your self-concept”[3]. Therefore, the destructive views of other people do inevitably affect the way we view ourselves; our self-esteem.

If I don't get likes I know the picture is ugly so I just delete it’
Others said they base their happiness on the amount of likes they get. Despite some understanding the unattainable perfection promoted by Instagram, teenage girls are still stressing to obtain external validation and perceived perfection, deleting those Instagram pictures that don’t live up to societal constructions of value through likes. It seems we are using Instagram to find a version of ourselves that receives the most positive engagement through likes, follows and comments.
Because you can post good selfies and feel great and get lots of likes and it makes me feel like everyone likes me’ (Someone's justification of the 'positive' effect on Instagram)
Although we can use the social network to build and encourage one another (a vital biblical principle), there is a fine line between receiving this out of love and obsessing over receiving this in order to justify our existence and base validation of ourselves. Our self-esteem cannot rest on external, temporal validation through Instagram. The pie charts above show the shift in results if I were to take each response that correlated the number of likes on their photos to an increase in self-esteem and express that as having a negative effect on self-esteem. The results shift to 56% of girls equating Instagram as having a negative effect on their self-esteem.

[2] Olivia Fleming, ‘How Instagram is ruining our self-esteem’,, (Elle Magazine, 2014)
[3] Carlin Flora, ‘Metaperceptions: How do you see yourself?’,, (Psychology Today, 2015)


Friday, 20 May 2016

Where do you call home?

I have just recently (and very scarily) moved out of my family home in my hometown to the big British City of London. It sounds glamorous and wonderful (and it is super exciting) but it has been hard and it has meant facing adult life stuff like bills and broken wardrobes and not coming home to the most influential woman in my life every day - mumma J that's you I'm talking about (and you Dad, you're great - Bex you're at uni soz mate).

So, I've been reflecting upon the question: 'what is home?'

I thought I ought to first clear up my reason for moving:

I felt called by God.

Weird right? I could go further into details but I won't - you can message me separately if you're curious - but on the whole, I felt called by God to move to Southfields. It wasn't a decision taken lightly, and it was a decision that sat with me for months.

Now we've cleared that up, let's get onto other matters.

What, where and who is home?

The well-known phrase states that "home is where the heart is". I don't think we ponder that thought a lot. Or if we do, we don't grasp the depths of its meaning.

  • I believe that 'home' has everything to do with the orientation of our soul.
  • I believe that 'home' is about more than just physical places.
  • I believe that 'home' is about where we dwell.
I look at the life of Jesus and can't pinpoint one specific place where Jesus called 'home' (I'm talking as in, 'house'). He was constantly on the move, future-facing, following his Father's call upon his life. The most profound, yet also generic, observation we can make about the life of Jesus is that he was always oriented towards what God was doing and he always ensured he had a dwelling place to rest in and with God.

Ephesians 2:22 (NIV): "In him, you too are being built together [does this remind you, too, of building a house?!] to become a dwelling place in which God lives by his Spirit."

For me, 'home' is about adventuring life with God. It doesn't mean we are without our close family, it means we are more intentional with our time. It doesn't mean we are without people, we were created to live within the 'body of Christ'; i.e. the Church. 
It's about 'going places' where God is on the move (not necessarily geographical places), remaining in Him, Him dwelling in us. It's about being orientated towards Jesus. It's about Jesus being Lord.

Life may take us to different physical places (towns, cities, countries), and God may lead us to different physical places, but if we remain in Him then we'll always be 'at home' where we belong. 

Just a few thoughts.

I'll keep you posted.

Sunday, 17 April 2016

The Male Gaze

Here's a snippet from London College of Fashion Student, Becky Faerber, on The Male Gaze:

There is a huge desire to satisfy the requirements of the male gaze within women's fashion. 

Materialism of women both sexually and maternally through film and advertising commonly objectifies them to the ‘male gaze’. Both the pleasure of looking (scopophilia) and the pleasure of being looked at (exhibitionism), implies that both parties are 'stimulated' by such images.

Rogue by Rhianna (fragrance) - Google Images

This advertisement has been banned from certain places for being too “sexually suggestive”. However, as the Guardian states, “The company believed the majority of women would not consider the portrayal of Rihanna to be demeaning, but rather she was depicted as being in a position of power, as indicated by the name Rogue, which suggested “one with the courage to challenge boundaries.”

Although the image is supposed to present Rihanna as powerful, it could also be seen to objectify her sexually. This then creates a sexualised culture making it acceptable to appear this way. Then encouraging this throughout society: creating a construction of the female ideal.

Society creates what culturally is seen as ‘beautiful’ and ‘unique’ and implies that women have to abide by it, but actually this is just a construction to which most people aspire. 
For example, in the modern day, the ‘pre-adolescent’ body is presented as the female ideal due to the media presenting these figures as perfect - but it didn't used to be this way. The female body is altered and changed to enable fashion to look appealing throughout the whole of history. This is seen through the use of the corsets, and in today’s society within the use of dieting and cosmetic surgery.
In the book ‘The Feminine Ideal’, Thesander argues, “In order to be accepted as a ‘woman’ it is not enough to have a woman’s body or to be feminine: you first have to meet the social demands of femininity.” This presents the idea that you cannot necessarily be biologically a female, but it’s the way you present yourself to society that makes you a female, through the way you dress and how you look...


I think perhaps there's this paradox of craving the attention of the male gaze yet also being repulsed and in fear of it (i.e. that potentially creepy looking man who stares at you in the street). 

Yikes. In my opinion, you've only got to look at images (or search particular #'s) all over Instagram [or need I mention Snapchat?] to see how many girls are posting provocative, sexually-enticing images of themselves for whatever reason - which I am not to judge. The terrifying thing is that I'm sure it's becoming more and more frequent - begging the question, has it therefore been normalized because it's a female ideal constructed by the media? 

Food for thought ey?! It strikes me that IF society objectifying women is acceptable because it's culturally attractive (and pleasurable because it draws the male gaze) and therefore becomes a female ideal then what lifestyle/challenge/issue does this present for women and young girls today?

Agree? Disagree? Thoughts?

I'll keep you posted.

Thursday, 10 March 2016

Revelations of #NOMAKEUP

So y'all know I've given up make-up for lent - and I've shared the reasons why (read here). 
I believe I'm almost 30 days into the challenge, so what has struck me most so far?

no make-up | no filter | no edit ~ @jessiefaerber 

1.   I am free

I am loving it. And I hoped I'd get to this point, but thought it would be very unlikely! The first week (especially the first few days) SUCKED. But it proves that once you push through an awkward period of uncomfortable change, liberation knocks at your door

I love that I'm thinking less about how I look. I love that I can look in the mirror and be comfortable in my own skin with my own, natural face. I love that I've broken free of the chains that compelled me to wear make-up. I love that I'm still loved by family, friends (and Robbie of course). I love that it's provoked conversation about image, and how much it has sparked new insight

Don't get me wrong, I'm looking forward to being able to wear it again - but the interesting thing will be to see whether I actually do or not...

2.   I am more than my appearance

Rupi Kaur sums this bit up for me very well:

As I've said before - I'm still the same Jessie no matter whether I wear make-up or not. But this should impact us on a deeper level. 'Pretty', 'attractive', 'beautiful' (etc) seem to be the compliments we strive for in this society. I know I have. We dish them out to young girls from a very young age, and we surround them with images of the perfect woman - so it's not flipping surprising. 

WHY do we put this on eachother and ourselves?!

I've been really challenged to think about the way I view myself as more than my image. I'm talking about my characteristics. I'm talking about what makes me ME; what makes me unique. I don't want to be just 'pretty'. I want to be pretty wise, pretty resilient, pretty brave, pretty faithful, pretty loving........

This had a knock-on realisation for me: I want to be a woman who champions this in other women (however young or old they may be). I want to shift my thinking to assess the hearts of other women before I assess the square footage of their face (!) And I want my words of encouragement and compliments to reflect that. 

3.   I am my heart

This follows on from point number 2. However, at this point I want to bring in God - don't stop reading! I'm a follower of Jesus, dreaming and conversing with God about each step I take in life and all for playing my part in God's master-story.

The last few days I've been mulling over the fact that we have NO idea what God looks like.

As human beings, we were created in the image of God himself: "God created mankind in His own image" (Genesis 1:27 NIV). And we're called to be like Him. Our indicator of what He is like is in the Bible (and through His son, Jesus): wise, faithful, loving, good, compassionate, generous, creative...  

SO, being created in the image of God and growing into His likeness MUST be about our heart, who we are, the characteristics we possess BECAUSE we have no idea what God - our Creator - looks like. So why are we human beings (His children created in His image) more obsessed with what we look like than who we are and were created to be by Him? Kinda getting my jist?

"People look at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart" (1 Samuel 16:7 NIV)

God is the ultimate designer of your heart and my heart. 

Next time you look in the mirror, assess the condition of your heart. 

Next time you look at someone else, assess who they are, not just what they look like. 
Next time you pick up your make-up, consider giving it up for a significant period of time and see what it teaches you. 

I'll keep you posted. 

Friday, 26 February 2016

Don't call me SHY

‘Shy’ in the Thesaurus: afraid, apprehensive, cautious, fearful, hesitant, nervous, reluctant, timid.

I write this blog post from experience – as I do with them all.
Shy is a word I’ve been labelled with many times, especially when I was younger. The more I ponder it, the more baffled I am that people thought it was ok to label me with this particular characteristic. People make a deliberate choice to label others this too.

It’s a label that sticks. It’s a label that affects you in many ways. It’s a label of self-fulfilling prophecy.

And do you know what, ‘just pondering’:
Maybe it’s your presence that makes me feel uncomfortable and therefore quieten down. Maybe your company is so invading and intrusive that I just leave you to it and am happy to take a back seat. Maybe I enjoy observing conversation and don’t feel the need to always participate. Maybe I’m processing internally as opposed to externally. Maybe I’m content in who I am that I don’t need to show that outwardly. Maybe you label me ‘shy’ because of your insecurities with your own character. Maybe I just have different characteristics from you. Maybe, ultimately, I’m just totally different from you. 
N.B. Just ‘maybe’. I may be wrong, I’m sharing my thoughts for you to explore where you stand yourself.

We have to be careful with our words.
Words kill, words give life; they’re either poison or fruit – you choose” (Proverbs 18:21, MSG)
I carried ‘shy’ for so long that it started to define who I was and how I approached different situations. I would immediately cave inBUT now I have the choice to let the initial power behind the word 'shy' fall away: and it will.That’s not who I am. I’m open, I’m chatty, I’m passionate, I’m loved, I’m significant, I’m confident. I’m learning to own who I am. Love it. Embrace it. And carry on growing, learning and exploring. 
God's thoughts about you (and me) are bigger, truer and more powerful than your thoughts about yourself. And they are bigger, truer and more powerful than other people's thoughts about you. And where do we find out what these thoughts are? The Bible.
"You know me inside and out, you know every bone in my body; You know exactly how I was made, bit by bit, how I was sculpted from nothing into something" (Psalm 139:15, MSG)
So – thank you that I can now relate to those going through a similar journey. And – please – think about the words you speak into others’ lives. They have power (whether they should or shouldn’t). 
I'll keep you posted.

Saturday, 13 February 2016

Why I'm giving up Make-Up for Lent

A few months ago I was chatting with a lovely friend at college (you know who you are!) about make-up and how she doesn't wear any. I made the rash comment; 'oh well I might just give it up for lent, it's probs a good idea considering what I do with Belle'. 

It wasn't until 'bedtime' (yes I still call it bedtime) on Pancake Day that I was reminded of my comment and decided to GO FOR IT. So I decided that on the average day, for 40 days, I will not be wearing make up.

And here we are 4 days in. Since the start of lent I've done a belle workshop, been out for dinner 3 times (that's not a usual thing btw), spent time with family/friends/boyfriend and been shopping - just so you know I haven't been hiding away in a cave avoiding all contact with human beings. 

Here are some of the thoughts I've had so far:
  • Is it too late to back-out?
  • What if people think I'm ill or I haven't slept in days or something?
  • I fancy wearing lipstick today - wait, oh crap
  • I hate this
  • I can't fail because then I'd be a hypocrite
  • I wish contouring hadn't yet been introduced (even though I don't do it anyway)
  • At least my face is relatively clear at the moment (*touch wood*)
  • What if people treat me different?
  • Oooh I might buy this new eyebrow pencil - wait, oh crap
  • But doing make-up is my hobby - I miss my hobby
  • 40 days. That's almost two whole months...
So WHY am I doing this?

1. To prove that who we are isn't defined by how we look

We are more than our image. The fact I'm not wearing make-up doesn't make me any less myself. I'm still the laid-back, lacking common sense, funny because I lack common sense, smiley, caring Jessie that I am with make-up. 

I want to be more comfortable and confident in my own, natural skin. I want to still own, love and embrace who I am. And at the moment I feel like I'm comparing myself to others more than ever! So, honestly, it will take time. But that's why I'm doing this - it's important.
God doesn't called his 'masterpiece' (Eph. 2:10, NIV), dependent upon whether we're wearing make-up or not!

2. To be an example to young (or just other) girls

It was great to stand in-front of the girls at the Belle workshop and be 100% raw and real with them. I don't want us to be encouraging a culture of fake, filtered and fraudulent (i.e. would a stranger notice you in a crowd from just viewing your Instagram/Facebook profile pic - just a thought!) 

Checkout my other blog post 'Should I be short, fat and ugly?': I want this to be an example to all of those people who don't think I can lead Belle because of the way I look. 

I've already felt challenged by not being able to 'look my best'. Why is that? Is it just this need to impress? I'm exploring the 'why' behind the 'what'. Do all girls feel that they have to look their best all the time to impress? That's not ok: I'll explore it.

3. To see what God reveals to me during this time

I preached in December on 'idols'. Tim Keller: 'an idol is anything more important to you than God, anything that absorbs your heart and imagination more than God, anything you seek to give you what only God can give'

I figured that actually my image is something that I can all too easily slip back into making an idol in my life. To be sure that it's not at my centre, (despite how uncomfortable it feels), make-up has to go. I want God to absorb my heart and imagination more than concerns about how I look do. I want this to be a time of self-denial and thus drawing closer to Him who created me and knows me better than I know myself. I want my value, ALL of it, to draw from Him.

So, if you see me - let's chat about it. Tell me how you feel, I'll tell you how I feel. Let's be real and vulnerable. Let's open up conversation about this stuff.

I'll keep you posted on the journey.

Thursday, 11 February 2016

Look Outside of Yourself

Something has been challenging me recently. 

The world is obsessed with ‘self’. It’s so focussed on self-love, self-acceptance, self-justification, self-righteousness, self-actualisation, self-denigration, self-righteousness, self-pity and self-centeredness.

We observe in the world such emphasis upon what we achieve, how we look, what we own, what we do, what we have; it’s all about ‘me’.

We live in this tension between the world and God. Yet, we can do something about it. 

I had the pleasure of attending the Bloggers Big Brekkie on the 28th January. We were invited find out more about the 'BIG BREKKIE' Campaign; seeing churches and families, young and old, across the UK getting their neighbourhoods together for a big fundraising breakfast. 

I was reminded of our duty to LOVE, our duty to SERVE, our duty to SHARE

Photo by Christian Aid
I was reminded of how lucky we are, yet how much life isn't about 'self'.
Jesus calls us to love our neighbours'. And not just the ones down the street.

Photo by Christian Aid

The Big Brekkie campaign is a great way to gather people together, to join in fellowship, to laugh, eat, share and love. Yet, to also look outside of yourself and make a difference to someone outside of yourself. Checkout Morsheda's story here.  

Photo from
I cannot think of a better way to look outside of yourself. To be counter-cultural in a society obsessed with 'self'. 
I cannot think of a better way to change a life.

Thank you Christian Aid.


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