Reflections on being ill

I claim no great experience of illness - many have faced far more than I have, deespite the last few months. Those months have been an unusual time for me - contrained to very little action and barely any thought for a couple of months and a slow process of recovery, which I have yet to fully complete. Along the way I hope I've learnt a thing or two, such as ...

  • Illness is a rubbish time to seek God. If I've suggested in the past that such times might be opportunitites to rest and seek God - sorry. They may be for some, but for me, and I suspect many, they aren't. Lesson learned.
  • Illness so often brings out the best in those around you. You guys are awesome!
  • Recovery is a slow and unpredictable business. I'm still not 100%, but my stamina is growing day by day. I've learned to rest more and, shockingly, take breaks!
  • It faces you with a choice: will my feelings, my physical and mental state, determine what I believe about God. Or, will I choose to believe the bible, and the God I know, despite what I feel. Some days it's easy to make the choice to trust the bible. Some days it was, and is, harder. But nevertheless, I do.

It's been a delight to start to come back to full strength, and I have loved the last few Sundays. It's a joy and privilege to lead WCC!

The next few days I will be in France, at a gathering for those involved in leadeship in any way in the french-speaking churches we relate to. I'll we going with Mark Mumford (the team lead of the Salt and Light UK team) and Steve Thomas (if he's well enough - he's had back problems for the last couple of months). Please do pray that we might release faith, enourage life in God and sow godly wisdom.

Neil Townsend
Wantage Pastor

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