Fiery Darts

‘Fiery darts’ is how Paul puts it. Abba Anthony described being tormented by demons while he was in the desert. Teresa of Ávila talks about snakes and reptiles and ghastly creatures prowling and snapping. On these days, when my nights are filled with nightmares and general nasty stuff, I wake to the ugliness of unrelenting flashbacks, a barrage swift and sharp, just like those fiery darts. They claw at you. I can even smell the ‘event(s)’.


When I went to the Celebrate Recovery conference in 2012, the founder of Celebrate Recovery, John Baker, spoke of those so broken that the only thing they respond to, the only thing they can do is to sing songs of worship. Here again is another paradox, another moment when God turns the world on its head. I remember that Thérèse de Lisieux says that, although we are so small, we possess a God-given dignity. She also wrote:


‘My will is to endure, by Love,

The Darkness of my exile here’


So then, it is love that makes me choose to get up from this table, to do the things I need to do, in love, for my family. And I will lift my head and sing praises. Because God is good. And God is always.


Thérèse looking pensive

Thérèse looking pensive

You can read more about Thérèse here:


God Here, Among Us




I hate them. Sometimes they last all night, with fitful wakefulness in between. When I wake I am glad to realise it was only a dream, that the past hasn’t come back in all its horribleness, but still, such nights are emotionally draining. Daytime flashbacks are draining too. They still grab hold of me, but not usually with the same intensity that they did in the past. This is good. This is progress.


I recalled the poem I posted yesterday as I breathed in the fresh green of an English summer morning and sipped my also-green smoothie (recipe here). My mind drifted to thoughts both of thankfulness for what I have now, and of sorrow for our brothers and sisters, especially those in the Middle East, whose suffering is intense and ongoing. Come by here, Lord.


I was reminded of this song by Shaun Groves. Shaun writes songs with lyrics you won’t hear anywhere else, and a rare, tender honesty.


Be blessed, this June morning. Peace be with you.