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Writing From A Sofa

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I’m sitting here on my lunch break, showing up to write. I’m trying to find the fun in writing again. The simple joy of writing my life.

As I write this on my phone, delving inside myself to try and find the words, it strikes me how scary this can be.

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Poema S2 09 | Claire Musters on Taking Off Our Masks

My dear friend, author and speaker Claire Musters, joins me on the show today. Claire shares her powerful and challenging testimony of how she had to confront the masks she was wearing, the darkness in her life, and how through the love and grace of friends, her devoted husband and God, she found a way to healing and transformation – and in the process discovered her authentic self. Claire also talks about the masks we all wear, the different roles we play in our lives, and how to confront the challenge of taking off those masks and doing the work to discover our authentic selves, as she writes about her new book ‘Taking Off The Mask’. What we discover in our conversation is that taking off our masks is a journey to discover our true selves, and to know the divine in a deeper, richer way. Find more of Claire’s work at www.clairemusters.com, and buy her new book ‘Taking Off The Mask, on her website or on Amazon.P

33 Years: Why It’s Time To Tell My Story

April 1st 1985. 

It was the first Monday of Holy Week. Little was I to know it would become the moment my life descended into hell.

I still remember. I remember the lights of the ambulance lighting up my bedroom window. I remember creeping downstairs in a hallway lit up mainly by outside lights, seeing the ambulance outside. And I remember walking into our front lounge, seeing my mum, sitting in the chair.

Pale white.

Frozen.

Not breathing.

Mouth open.

Eyes looking downwards, not moving.

She was completely still. Her body paralysed by a severe asthma attack. (more…)

Poema S2 08 | Kaitlin Curtice on Glory Happening

Kaitlin Curtice joins me on the podcast today. Kaitlin is a Native American Christian author, speaker and worship leader. As an enrolled member of the Potawatomi Citizen Band and someone who has grown up in the Christian faith, Kaitlin writes on the intersection of Native American spirituality, mystic faith in everyday life, and the church.

Kaitlin and I discuss her new book, ‘Glory Happening’, real stories of finding the divine in everyday places. We also explore how we can see the divine in the every day, why and how we believe, and how our spirituality can impact our creativity.

Kaitin is a woman of grace and deep spirituality, and has so much wisdom to share with the world. This one’s definitely worth a listen.

Poema S2 07 | Matt Bays on Finding God In The Ruins.

I’m delighted to welcome author and speaker Matt Bays to the podcast today.

Matt begins by sharing the powerful and moving story behind his book “Finding God In The Ruins”, his painful childhood which led to struggles with alcohol addiction, and how in the midst of his recovery he faced yet more challenges as his sister tragically lost her life to cancer.

We talk about dealing with grief, addiction and being honest with both God and ourselves about suffering, and asking those tough questions. About doubt, questioning and the mystery of the divine, and how we believe.

Matt is humble, wise and honest, and it was a joy to talk to him. Have a listen and then check out his book.

Poema S2 06 | Tanya Marlow on Learning To Wait

Author and blogger Tanya Marlow joins me today to talk about her new book ‘Those Who Wait’. It’s a book about learning the art of divine patience, and stories from scripture and life which teach us about waiting on God.

Tanya has a powerful personal testimony which has taught her a lot about patience, both in life and in faith, and with her theological background has taken several stories from scripture and shown what they can tell us about waiting on God.

Everyone is waiting. We wait for a bus, a spouse, a different job, a better life. We wait for Christ. At best, it’s irritating; at worst, unbearable. But what if our frustrated longings have spiritual value?

Tanya discusses this with me today, with great wisdom, insight and joy. Tanya is one of the wisest, most grace-filled people I’ve encountered and it was a joy to chat to her. I know you’ll be truly inspired by this conversation.

You can find Tanya’s work at TanyaMarlow.com, follow her on Twitter at @Tanya_Marlow & you can buy her book ‘Those Who Wait’ on Amazon.

Poema S2 05 | Kent Dobson on Being Bitten By A Camel

Today I’m joined by author, speaker and theologian Kent Dobson.

Kent, with great vulnerability and wisdom, shares his own spiritual journey, including his pilgrimage up what is often known as Mount Sinai – where he was bitten by a camel, both physically and metaphorically. This is a story he tells in his new book ‘Bitten By A Camel’.

Religion, God, Spirituality, Nature, Sacred Texts, Mystery, and the Human Soul are all being rethought, turned over and reborn. This unfolding conversation is wild and full of life. It crosses disciplines and backgrounds and languages. Kent’s life is about joining and promoting this generative conversation, and today he shares this wisdom and story with us.

Poema S2 04 | The Blacksmiths Daughters On The Story Of An Album

Today musical quartet the Blacksmiths Daughters return to the podcast. Julida & Sean Alter return from our first interview we’re also joined by the other half of the band, Annella and Brent Platter. Julida and Anetta are sisters, and together with their husbands, and others, are creating truly authentic, personal music.

Their new video “You’re My Man” releases not long ago, and their new album ‘Seasons Turn’, releases 10th October, and today we talk about the new songs, the new album, and the creative journey behind it. As we examine different songs written by different members of the band, we see how our personal stories can have a direct impact on the kind of work we create.

This is a fascinating look at the creative journey behind an album, and well worth a listen.

*****

Check out their new video here and find out more about the new album and The Blacksmiths Daughters work here.

Poema S2 03 | Perfectly Abnormal with Chris Morris

My dear friend and author Chris Morris joins me today. Chris is a long time advocate of issues surrounding chronic illness, and reconciling these with faith. As someone who lives with chronic illness himself and has family members with chronic illness, he knows the challenges chronic illness can bring – as well as some of the stigma, in particular around some religious circles.

Today Chris shares a bit of his story, lessons he’s learned and research he’s done behind the subject, all of which has resulted in the publishing of his new book, ‘Perfectly Abnormal’. Chris shares the truth behind a lot of stigma and misinformation, and the authentic experience of living with chronic illness – and gives hope and inspiration for those living with chronic illness themselves.

*****

I’d highly recommend ‘Perfectly Normal’ to all those who live with chronic illness, and anyone who knows someone who lives with it In the book Chris strives to destroy some common myths facing the chronic illness community, including a poor theology of illness. From there, he begins a conversation about how to build a healthy place for the chronic illness community to be safe.

The book is available now on Amazon, Barnes & Noble, iBooks, or wherever books are sold.

Poema S2 02 | Questions We Don’t Ask 2 – How Do I Believe?

Today our ‘Questions We Don’t Ask’ series continues, with the fundamental question of ‘How Do I Believe?’

Continuing from where we left off last week, Charles Porter and I discuss how, whilst so often we discuss what we believe, that maybe the deeper, more fundamental question is how we believe.

These conversations aren’t merely about answering the question. The questions are more jumping off points into a much bigger, wider and deeper exploration of Christian spirituality and our own journeys – because ultimately, all our journeys are connected, and there’s many of us asking these kind of questions.

This question takes us from spiral dynamics, to the mystics, to Richard Rohr & non-dual thinking, via Trump & Brexit, and on to tons of other places. We explore some challenging, uncomfortable territory – but territory it’s absolutely necessary to cover to gain both a deeper understanding and depth to our spirituality.

Come and join us.