'Never waste a good crisis' ~ Winston Churchill

'Never waste a good crisis' ~ Winston Churchill I heard this Churchillian quote this morning while enjoying my traditional 'whatever the weather' porridge. A quick google turned up these interesting words written by Andrew Low for the commercial world. "In challenging times one must question the accepted reality because things are going wrong, rapid answers are needed and the solution may well be found outside the usual compass. In the world of business we are often guilty of not challenging the norm; we are instead satisfied with following procedure and tradition. It takes insight and not a little courage to question your leaders as to why are things done the way that they are? However, in times of crisis there seems to be more latitude to do so – management in fact is actively seeking input it seems. Leading companies nowadays recognise this and cultivate a more open, questioning climate within the office at all times because a degree of continual revie

In her eyes...

Three years of planning, form filling, team building. Three years of fund raising, house buying, permission seeking. Three years of anticipation, emotion, excitement and the moment had arrived, suddenly our passport photograph family were stood with us. Suddenly Community Sponsorship was more than an idea, a project, more than names, this was real.  Beyond the chaos of suitcase upon suitcase upon suitcase and translated hellos was Rana. Below her perfect hijab, were mother eyes beyond tiredness, telling an unimaginable story. What does it take to choose an uncertain future, to trust her family to passport photographs? Everything for this moment risked, Gatwick her portal from a life known to a life unknown. Certainty, albeit fragmented, gone. Heavy, grey eyes reflect belongings and loved ones left behind for an unshaped dream.  Bewildered she trusts and we leave.  Not a week later she explains, “for many months I have not slept, who are these people? Only photos and names”.  We’re eati

The Bullet List...

It is refugee week 2019, six weeks ago we welcomed an amazing family into our community, it all started with a simple question 'is Community Sponsorship something you could consider?'  Looking back I can hardly believe my reply. The simple invite brutally ducked out of it with a carefully worded, six bullet pointed apologetic for non-involvement. No house, no money, no capacity, a bullet list of fear and indifference. Looking back I can hardly believe how the doors opened. It was like a retirement was meant for this moment with it availability, willingness and drive. Meetings and dreams, planning and scheming and we were on our way. A new bullet list emerging. ·              A local authority willing to help and to guide. ·              A benefactor willing to give. ·              Our church both local and national willing to support. ·              A team willing to give. ·              A Home Office willing to guide. ·             Application forms fil

In his eyes….

I don't tend to blog as much but this is a day I don't want to forget.... btw Jamal is a pseudonym --- I looked into his eyes and I saw why we had invested so much of ourselves into this project. “Thank you thank you thank you….” , we were at the airport and the Syrian family we will be sponsoring were with us in arrivals. The boys were beyond themselves with happiness. Jamal looks at his family and then me and  whispers ‘thank you’. Communicating through google translate Jamal reads my message, “we are looking forward to sharing life with you” , he looks up at me, tears well up. Full of emotion Jamal speaks into the phone and shows me the translation, “nothing I can say will let you know how grateful we are… we are safe”. Out in the garden, high above an EasyJet Airbus banks and changes direction, the engines whine in protest, Jamal violently sucks in air, ducks and looks at me with eyes of terror. For a moment hope cowered. I try to reassure but sense the i

Lessons for TSA from a Spider Crab...!

I can't imagine there are many that don't enjoy sitting and marveling at what the BBC serve up on a Sunday evening with the amazing Sir David Attenborough! Octopus is definitely my new favourite cephalopod! But the spider crabs on this week were equally as stunning. Their gathering in extreme numbers to molt their shells struck me as being a rather pertinent lesson. Thousands merging together to support and protect one another as they lost their shell and the soft shell beneath hardened. Support for one another at a time of extreme vulnerability. I didn't think too much more about this until my daily dose of Rohr popped into my inbox today. I read how Episcopal Bishop Mark Dyer referred to 'recurring periods of upheaval in the church as giant “rummage sales” in which the church rids itself of what is no longer needed and rediscovers treasures it had forgotten'. Rohr continues by quoting Phyllis Tickle who suggested in the process of building necessary structur

'first being last and the last being first' thinking...

We used this prayer this morning written by Gary Kowalski Gracious Spirit, Who makes the first to be last and the last to be first, Who makes the rain to fall and the sun to shine upon all, Help us to understand that life is not an contest Where having the most toys is the point of the game, To realize that the victor’s circle can be the loneliest spot on earth, To recognize that the greatest rewards don’t come from winning but from relationships where both triumphs and tears can be celebrated and shared. Powerful Spirit, Infuse us with your lifegiving strength And grant us the inward security of knowing our own goodness without needing to prove it to the world; Lift us above both envy and pride -- the need to feel superior to others and feelings of inadequacy alike -- Enabling us to walk together as equals, At home in the great community of life. Wise Spirit, We know that life is not a race to be won But a journey to be savoured. Grant us the faith to live ea

Prophets - Rohr...

A bit of today's daily dose of Rohr... "Prophets, by their very nature, cannot be at the center of any social structure. Rather, they are “on the edge of the inside.” They cannot be fully insiders, but they cannot throw rocks from outside either. They must be educated inside the system, knowing and living the rules, before they can critique what is non- essential or not so important. Jesus did this masterfully (see Matthew 5:17-48). This is what Martin Luther King, Jr. taught the United States, what Gandhi taught British-occupied India, and what Nelson Mandela taught South Africa. Only with great respect for and understanding of the rules can a prophet know how to properly break those very same rules—for the sake of a greater purpose and value. A prophet critiques a system by quoting its own documents, constitutions, heroes, and Scriptures against its present practice. This is their secret: systems are best unlocked from inside." One of the most common complaints I h