I am often a weary traveller through this life. But I am nevertheless a guide to others. I am a servant, a carer and a nurturer. I love to prepare food and feed people. I find therapy in baking cakes. I prefer to wear functional clothes but can see the pretty in adornments and the beauty in nature. I am a trained academic and a thinker, and I have a strong Christian faith. I love music in all its forms, and love to sing, both for praise and pleasure (often both at the same time). Books, I can devour by the trainload. I am there for people who need me. I like to sit and a drink a mug of good old English tea (strong, with milk, no sugar.)
I help lead a Pram Service for the under 5s in our community, and assist with Baptism Preparation sessions for the parents of children to be baptised in church. I am an Anglican with Anglo-Catholic leanings, who appreciates what other denominations and faiths have to offer (some of my best friends are Methodist and Muslim) and gets pretty charismatic from time to time. For the past two years, I have studied theology modules and completed assignments to allow me to apply to a specialist third year of Diocesan training, at the end of which I may qualify as a Registered Lay Minister in the Church of England. This week, I heard I been accepted onto that course. So for 30 weeks, I will be trained in the many aspects of Christian pastoral care, before commencing a placement in that area (prison? hospital? church? who knows.)
I have blogged before, but this is an opportunity to start something new, and journal through the developments in my faith journey, and my learning. It is not really that long since I came to rediscover my faith, but now everything I have done in the past seems to signal the way to a future in ministry, in a kind of join-the-dots puzzle that starts to slowly take shape as the journey between each number is completed. I have three young girls (6, 5 and 1) and a husband to take care of, as well as my own spiritual needs, and those of others in the world. Yet, I feel God has put me on this path for now, so I will follow.
I don't expect that many people will join me, as this is pretty much going to be a personal journalling of motherhood and ministry and balancing the two, but everyone is welcome on board, to offer insight or (constructive) criticism. At this point in my life I just want to learn how to help others more, and consolidate this as my vocation. I am just seeking to learn. I value family rather than riches, joy rather than material possessions, and God's plan rather than mine (well, I try.) I sincerely hope that not all of this blog will be as self-centered as this introductory post! Time to buckle seatbelts - I think this could be an interesting journey, with many ups and downs!
* Oh yeah - 'Who Am I' is one of my favourite songs from one of my favourite musicals, Les Miserables. Seeing it live at the Palace Theatre, London, wasn't the experience I hoped it would be but I am almost as obsessive about the cast recording I have as Patrick Bateman is in Bret Easton Ellis's American Psycho.