I worry about the mental health of our country.

Since the UK went into lockdown mode, Anxiety UK has seen a huge increase in calls. People already waiting for psychological support will be waiting even longer. And with the news that we’ll be in lockdown for a good while yet, the financial implications settling in, the sudden need to entertain ourselves and our children, the worry about keeping loved ones safe, enforced social distancing increasing loneliness, we are surely set for a mental health crisis.

Even those of us who previously haven’t had any mental health issue are more likely…

On my way home from work I dropped half a pastry on the pavement.
"Gargh!" I shouted.

I soon crossed paths with the only other pedestrian around. She studied me. Looked me in the eye. Watched me. Stared as she strode by.

Nothing wrong with that, you might say. Shouting was an overreaction to an insignificant event.

But what if I told you that watching the half-pastry meet an unintended end felt like another frustration in a series of many; that I was caught in a perpetual things are crap cycle, one in which I was making poor decision after…

The Black Dog visited me this weekend with a vengeance. It had been a while. He stormed his way in and destroyed all of my Saturday evening plans, and my ability to get to church either in the morning or the evening.

But on Monday I made him heel. Gradually.

How? I started singing psalms… in my head. I’m not a confident singer, and I’m sure my colleagues wouldn’t appreciate my warbling of faith statements.

But in my head the refrains “the Lord’s my shepherd, I’ll not be in want…” and “all people that on earth do dwell, sing to…

The importance of a bible reading plan cannot be understated.

Without one, you'll fall into one of two traps:

Presents to buy, crowds to push through with the little time you have to buy them, tired and angry drivers to stress you on your commute, menus and seating plans to deliberate on as you try to keep the vegetarians and carnivores happy while ensuring the pregnant women also have the right nutrients, cards to write, sellotape wars about where the dispenser is, guest rooms to prepare, the worry that you’ll fall out with family...

All at a frightengly fast pace, all with tired eyes from having had a long term, and your cold, and from those nights out.


I’ve started getting those emails that tell me my achievements from the year. Here’s how little exercise you did! (Thanks, Strava). Here’s a summary of all you’ve listened to this year — ah heck it, the whole decade! (Thanks, Spotify).

My Spotify Wrapped made for fascinating (for me) reading. My top artist of the decade was a real surprise: John Hanlon. My top artist of the year was The Getty’s, with whom I spent 42 hours… I don’t know when, although I vaguely remember listening to the Christmas Family Album while on a September run…

What are your vital stats…

Taking Advantage of Advent.

When I was a fresh Christian I usually got to the Christmas Day sermon and thought “whelp. I’ve not thought of Christ much at all this year.”

Slowly that is changing. Too slowly.

Whatever has happened in your walk with Christ this year let me encourage you with the words of a friend, which he said in reference to losing track of where he had got to with his bible reading plan: irked by the idea of having to reread lots he then figured — "Start again. What’s the worst that can happen?"

I am writing…

To quote one of my all time favourite characters, Slartibartfast, “great things are afoot!”

I will say it again, without the quote marks so you know it’s me speaking — great things are afoot in the States.

I really believe that. In terms of the gospel, great things really are afoot.

I need to say that because what I’m about to say will sound ‘pessimistic’ or ‘negative’ to some people. It will sound as if I’m the very people Finney and Sprague had to write for when they spoke their lectures in defence of revivals. To me, that is unfathomable…

My wife has the car tomorrow, which means my journey to church will be a long and winding one. That immediately puts a barrier for me to go. It’s simply gonna be a hassle to get there.

But mark my words — I will make it. I haven’t figured out how yet — it’s dependant on the weather as much as anything else. But I will get there. Somehow. By the grace of God.

Honestly, no matter how I feel in myself, the question “should I go?" is never really one I ask. Even, maybe even especially, in the midst…

The first thing I did this morning when I got to work (after I unpacked my bag and took of my coat) was to pray a post-it prayer.

It’s a really simple and actually a really effective way to pray as you work. All you do is take a post-it and pencil and scribble your prayer. Depending on how open your workplace is you can either place it somewhere discrete (if you’re anything like me it won’t be legible anyway) or fold it up and keep it on your person. This morning I tucked mine in my phone case.



I live in Scotland with my wife and two rabbits Cocoa and Nutmeg. I adore all of them — my wife slightly more. I mainly write about the art of Christian living.

Get the Medium app

A button that says 'Download on the App Store', and if clicked it will lead you to the iOS App store
A button that says 'Get it on, Google Play', and if clicked it will lead you to the Google Play store