I’m currently hiding behind a new laptop and am not home, so this post will be short and to the point… for once…
Last year I did a weeks work experience at the Christian Schools Worker Project (CSWP). I shadowed a lovely young woman who was passionate about God and I really enjoyed my time there.
Something that I spotted in her office was her prayer wall. I thought that the idea behind it was really cool. I don’t know about you, but my prayer life is a bit all over the place. I find it hard to remember what I’m meant to be praying for and I never really recognise when prayer has been answered (unless it’s something big and smacks me in the face). Continue reading “Not as I had expected”→
Yes you did read the title right, I did say feral kitten.
Last night my brother brought back a kitten from work, a very angry, scared kitten.
He is a ranger at a Nation Trust property. One day by their workshop they discovered some kittens. These guys weren’t your average domesticated kitty’s though, these were the equivalent of farm cats. They had no contact with people and hunted for their own food, the ones that will try to claw your face off if you try to pet them.Wild moggys are great for keeping the mice population down in the castle, so they decided to leave them and let them do what they were designed to do, hunt and kill.
My brother told me about them a week or two ago and we thought nothing more of it, untill last night.
Meet our latest house guest.
This angry, hissing, spitting, ball of rage is one of the kittens from the castle. Unlike the others though, it wasn’t from the workshop. This little was found alone by some dustbins on its last legs.
As tough as my brother acts, he has a soft heart so he volunteered to take the kitten to the vets to see if it could be helped. It was estimated that the little thing was only about 7 weeks old. With no mum or strength, there was no way it could hunt and would be dead within the nest few days due to the cold nights and lack of food.
As mentioned before though, cats are good at the property as it keeps the rodent population down, so it as decided that the kitten would be helped and one day let back onto the property. This is where my brothers big heart got the better of him and he volunteered to look after the mite untill Monday where he’s pass it on to one of his work colleges as she wanted a turn with the kitten.
That’s how we ended up with the small ball of rage in our home.
Here’s the thing though.
We have been trying to look after this kitten. We’ve been feeding it, giving it kitten milk from the shop, made it a home in a big cardboard box with a ticking clock, put a hot water bottle wrapped in blankets in with it so it can have some sort of warmth, but its terrified of us. All it does is hiss, spit, growl and swipe at us and let me tell you something, kittens have sharp claws.
This is too be expected.
In its short life, it’s never been cared for, it’s never been looked after or had interaction with humans.
It’s terrified of us and all it can do is defend itself from people who’s trying desperately to keep it alive.
It’s amazing how something so small can teach us such a big lesson.
In some ways I saw a lot of my own behaviors in that kitten.
Have I been looked after and cared for throughout my life? Yes, 100%. However, I have been very independent when it came to my problems.
Take my anxiety as an example.
As my anxiety increased over the past 7 years, I ran and isolated myself. Like the kitten found alone behind some bins, I had done the same and just like the kitten I hadn’t had the strength or life experience to survive. I developed anorexia and have been in a bad way physically for a while.
But then someone found me.
I’ve known God for 2 years but recently it feels like I’ve been found again. Gods scooped me up and taken me to safety.
Just like that kitten, who has us as a family trying to help it, I have people around me trying to help in the form of my church. But I’ve never had a church before. I’ve never had this sort of friendship and if I’m honest, it’s terrifying.
I’m left lashing out and pushing people away from my church because I’ve never had a church before. It’s new and scary and I don’t like it, my anxiety is seriously getting the better of me.
The doubts, the fear, the confusion, the suspicion, the anger and the pain just leaves me hiding away from this group of people who ultimately just want to help.
The saddest thing is, I’ve only just saw this.
I have no idea how to let them in though.
I’m really worried and scared.
I’m lonely and on my last legs. I’m fighting my eating disorder every day, I’ve gained weight and am slowly becoming healthier. It’s a slow process but I’m taking the right steps to get better.
However, my anxiety has shot through the roof and it’s the worst it’s ever been in all of my life.
I’m a mess.
I feel like a terrified, small, vulnerable kitten who hasn’t got a clue wha to do next. I want to hide in a small dark space and defend myself from anyone who gets too close.
But I’m so lonely and completely unable to get through this on my own.
I’m desperate for friendship and meaningful relationships, especially with my church.
For the past week I’ve had the privilege to serve on team at New Wine. After telling people this they tend to ask me what on Earth New wine is. My reply is usually along the lines of its a really big Christian festival.
In truth it’s far more than that.
New Wine is a place for people to come and worship God, to learn, to be ministered to, to meet people, to pray and to be prayed for. A place to spend time with God.
New Wine has always been the best week of my life.
This year was my forth year going yet my first serving on team, on my second year going I gave my life to God what was the best decision of my life. About 14,000 people was said to go this year, understandably not everyone is going to like the same thing so it’s split into different areas, some by age, other by preference of venue or style of worship.
I was working with the youth.
New Wine youth is split into several sections, I decided to brave VIBE. Vibe is one of the youth cafes and when I say cafe I mean the only things they serve is loud music, dancing and amazing company, not forgetting table tennis and Xbox.
Last year a member from the Vibe team prayed with me during the main celebration and I grew a large amount of trust towards her. In a crown of over 1000 youth she searched me out several times just to see how I was doing. I was truly touched by how much she cared. Simply by talking to me she had reflected so much of God’s love and I wanted part of that. It was what this team member did for that made me brave filing out and submitting my application for for Vibe.
Fast forward a year and somehow I made it on team. I want to my first team meeting and anxiety’s ugly head appeared. Everyone seemed to know each other what was so intimidating! You could identify what team we are from by our shirts, vibe being in the blue so it was easy to spot who was where. Everyone was smiling and hugging, what meant that they were friendly but for someone who doesn’t know social ques in groups I found intimidating, especially when from the off you could tell that they were loud and outgoing.
This being said, I came to New Wine with a determined mine, anxiety and the eating disorder had rid me of most of my friends other than a final two. If anyone could love me, it would be Christians. So ignoring a screaming mind, I socialized.
Above is the group photo of us all at the end of the week.
I’ve read so many times how church isn’t about a building. The people in your church are basically your family, this is something I’ve spent my entire christian walk struggling with. I know there is no such thing as a normal family, but I feel that I do come from a bit of a weird family, both by blood and by church. I know I’m cared for by the people in my facsimiles, they express kindness in ways that I don’t always get but I know they care. Yet I still struggle with feeling like church is my family and opening up to them, what isn’t a knock down about my church, they’re all lovely, anxiety and the mistrust that is caused by it is just a problem.
Being on team really opened my eyes though. So quickly I felt like I belonged, was the loud like most of them? Nope. But they still accepted my and cared for me like a family would. When I became ill they thankfully didn’t listen to my stubborn attempts at refusing a night or day off and with a hug they kicked my out and told me to go rest.
This week has really made me understand that it isn’t about a building, we were worshiping in a cow shed! We wasn’t in a grand building and yet God still meet with us all, He performed miracles and I felt closer to Him than I have all year. I wasn’t at church with people I’e known for years, I was with strangers but these strangers became family.
I’m going to be taking about New Wine for a while, it’s a been a week of miracles, healing and hope. In my next post I’m going to be going more in depth of the some great things that God has done, so keep your eyes open for that, It’ll be up in a day or two.
So whilst this is a short post where I haven’t touched on some of the amazing things, I just wanted to give you an introduction to this mini topic and just explain where I’ve been for the past week.