It really doesn’t matter who you are, what position you hold, or who you are within your family; male or female, young or old, you can still help to make a positive difference in the world.
I don’t know about you, but sometimes I look at all the troubles in the world and I am overwhelmed.Where do I start? I think the best place is where God has placed us, be it at school, in a business, a toddler group, in a bank, at a care home, or in the playground, or working in the city, on the tills in the supermarket, or, like me, in the counselling room.
- What are the challenges and implications for us, for me?
I have worked for 15 years as a counsellor, sitting one to one with many clients, keeping one foot in my world and placing one in theirs. Many of them are women who have faced domestic abuse. I have sat with people of all ages and stages as they take a leap of faith and break the silence; hours of privilege and hours of pain.
- How did I make try to bring change, and how can you?
I decided years ago when God healed me from my heroin addiction, that I would offer my life to him. Romans 12: 1-2 challenges us to “offer our bodies as living sacrifices”, so that is what I did. I did not realise what this would entail though. What is God asking you to give to him, what experience, what part of your past or present?
- It’s not as easy as it sounds.
It was all very well speaking on my healing from heroin, but when Page 3 pictures of me were found on the internet it all cranked up a gear. I was so ashamed, I had no idea they were there! But, as depression threatened to drag me down, I felt the challenge of God to write my story, his story in my life. My auto-biography ‘Potholes and Belly-Flops’was finally published two years ago, but it was not just about freedom from addiction.It also told the story of growing up with an angry father who made life hard for us all. Publishing the book was not all plain sailing as some people did not approve.
- Being part of a family makes all the difference.
Working for years with women and children caught up in abuse and understanding to some degree their pain launched me into writing my debut novel. ‘At Therapy’s End’ was published last year and is about a family caught up in domestic abuse. It was at this point that I became part of the ‘Restored’ family meeting up with Mandy Marshall and Peter Grant to see what I could do to highlight the issues around abuse more broadly.
- Do you want to be involved?
If, like me, you would like to make a difference in ending violence against women take a tour around the Restored website and see what area ‘fits’ you best. You can find out more about the issues here, and what you can do to help here. If you are a woman experiencing abuse, find help here. There are lots of good resources here. And last, but by no means least, please do make a donation to help Restored continue with their work – you can do this here.
I look forward to meeting you. Remember there is no offering too small or too shame-filled that God will not reframe and transform, you only have to stand before him with open hands.