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Apr 27

I Can Revise 1

Here are some interesting ways to revise:

- I would walk up and down my garden reciting law essays I'd memorised, juggling at the same time. I’d read that focusing your attention on a physical task helps your memory.

- Rapping my revision notes to instrumental rap beats found on YouTube. Like this..?


- I stick notes on the outside of my shower facing in so I can revise whilst in the shower.

- Pick up a kitchen safe or similar which will keep whatever you put in locked up until a set time. Use it either to avoid temptation by locking away your favourite gadgets until you've done your revision, or place a reward of your choosing inside, such as your favourite snack, that will become unlocked once you're done.

- So you keep dozing when trying to revise?  This extreme measure has been used by female students in China. They were recently reported to have clipped their long hair to clothes pegs that hung above them, yanking them awake if they dropped off to sleep!

Talk to someone else in your group about the most effective and least effective ways you’ve used when trying to learn for exams or tests.  In the end, you can learn from other people’s experience but the best way to revise is to use the method that’s best for you.

Learning to revise well is part of becoming a more effective student.  It also tests our determination and our motivation.  Revising is part of fulfilling our potential so good luck over the coming weeks.

Prayer using Bible Verses:

Dear God,

I ask for your help during my exams and test based on who you are and the promises that you make in the Bible.

I thank you God that you are the source of all wisdom as it says in Proverbs:


By wisdom the Lord laid the earth’s foundations, by understanding he set the heavens in place, by his knowledge the deeps were divided and the clouds let drop the dew. 

Proverbs 3:19,20 New International Version of the Bible


Help me to remember that however complex the subject may be that I am tackling, you can enable me to grasp it, understand it and remember the details because you are the originator of all knowledge. I thank you that you promise to help me when I ask for wisdom as it says in James: 


If any of you lacks wisdom, he should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to him. 

James 1:5 NIV


Help me to believe that even as I am praying, you are giving me the wisdom and the help I need.  I thank you that studying and gaining this knowledge will be beneficial to me as it says in Proverbs:


He who gets wisdom loves his own soul; he who cherishes understanding prospers. 

Proverbs 19:8 NIV


I thank you that although the discipline of studying seems very difficult right now, it will be well worth it as it says in Hebrews:


No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful.  Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it.

Hebrews 12:11 NIV


I thank you that even though I may feel stress and pressure during exam time, it says in Philippians:


I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

Philippians 4:13


And finally, I thank you that through the help of the Holy Spirit, I might have the mind of Christ:


For who has known the mind of the Lord that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ.

1 Corinthians 2:16 NIV


Thank you God that as I have spoken to you, you have spoken to me through your words in the Bible.  Help me to remember them and depend on them during exams.  Thank you for your wisdom, truth and help. 


Or if thinking about or doing revision is causing pressure:



Tags: Faith
Apr 7

Easter Hope



That Sunday evening the disciples were meeting behind locked doors because they were afraid of the Jewish leaders. Suddenly, Jesus was standing there among them! “Peace be with you,” he said. 20 As he spoke, he showed them the wounds in his hands and his side. They were filled with joy when they saw the Lord!

John 20:19-21


Can you imagine how the disciples reacted when they first saw Jesus killed and buried in the tomb?

Or how they felt when they saw him for the first time after he had risen?

They must have thought nothing was impossible for God.

The Easter story has so much meaning in it but, for me, it often speaks loudest about hope.

Hope as the veil of darkness

Transformed to the brightest light.

Hope as the most dreadful end

became the most beautiful beginning.

Hope as the depths of despair

Faded to reveal hope everlasting.

Hope as the curse of death

was defeated by eternal life.


I love how the Easter story is still bringing hope and new life to people today. Check out this story I came across recently. What do you make of it?



I want to pray, thinking particularly of people in the holidays;

Who will be studying, and revising.

Who will be going through challenging times with faith, health or relationships.

Who will be grieving or missing loved ones.

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace, so that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound in hope. May the God of comfort draw near to you, counsel and guide you, and may the God of peace guard your mind, body and spirit, through Jesus.




Tags: Faith
Mar 31

I Can Forgive 1

Are you aware of any stories of forgiveness (or of not forgiving) in the news recently?

There’s been quite a discussion about Martin McGuinness. This man who died recently has been called a peacemaker by many of the world’s leaders but he was involved the ‘struggles’ in Northern Ireland previously and this led Norman Tebbit, the Conservative cabinet minister who was injured and whose wife was left permanently disabled in the IRA’s 1984 Brighton bombing, to call him “a coward who never atoned for his crimes” and said “there can be no forgiveness without a confession of sins”.

In 2015, SMRT put on ‘Les Miserables’, a great musical with a very interesting storyline.  A key moment is,  



Jean Valjean was struggling to accept the Bishop’s forgiveness.  It reminded me of Jesus’ parable of the Lost Son and his teaching on ‘turning the other cheek if someone wrongs you’.  Sometimes it is easy to accept forgiveness.  Sometimes it’s not.  Sometimes we think we’ve done something so bad it can’t be forgiven.  Sometimes we think forgiveness is a sign of weakness.  What is definitely true is that love is the key to forgiveness.  The greater the thing we have to forgive or the bigger the thing we regret, love is the answer.  If we know that someone loves us or that we love someone who needs forgiveness, then that is going to make the situation easier.  Jean Valjean needed to understand both the Bishop’s and God’s love. 


Christians believe that we can see that love in action both in Jesus’ life and in his death, but more about that next week.

An older prayer but one that still rings true:

My Lord and my God,

remove far from me

whatever keeps me from you.

My Lord and my God

confer upon me

whatever enables me to reach you.

My Lord and my God

free me from self

and make me wholly yours.


(A Prayer of St Nicholas of Flue (1417-1487))






Remember to visit our Lent Calendar daily:


Tags: Faith
Mar 24

Mothering and Fathering 2

I love the fierce loyalty displayed in this video. Perhaps human parenting is not so different from parenting in the animal kingdom?



How long do you think parenting lasts? And what makes a good parent?

Would you like to be a parent in the future? What do you think would be the hardest aspect?

Proverbs 1:8-9 says,


Listen, my son, to your father's instruction and do not forsake your mother's teaching. What you learn from them will crown you with grace and be a chain of honour around your neck.

What is some of the best advice you have learned from a parent, carer or older family member or friend?

I have received a lot of wisdom from my Father and Mother, but also believe that it takes a village to raise a child!

Let’s pray for our parents and carers:

God, Our Heavenly parent.
You entrusted your Son Jesus, to earthly parents Mary and Joseph,
Bless all parents as they care for their families.
Give them strength and wisdom, tenderness and patience;
support them in the work they have to do, protecting those who look to them,
as we look to you for love and salvation, through Jesus Christ our rock and defender.

For further listening, enjoy this mysterious gospel number ‘Father Stretch My Hands’ (100 points to whoever can guess who sampled it)



Remember to visit our Lent Calendar daily:





Tags: Faith
Mar 16

Mothering and Fathering 1

This is a reminder, Mothering Sunday is next Sunday.  Will you/your family do anything special for the day?  Discuss with those around you.

What is Mothering Sunday?  Here’s an explanation,



I was surprised how few videos there were to choose from on this theme. Perhaps you could make one for next year.

It’s good to celebrate Mums and Mothers and it’s good to celebrate all the good things our churches mean to us. However, some people find this difficult as they have had bad experiences of their mothers or they have absent mothers or they can’t be mothers or their church has let them down. Please spare a thought for people in these sort of situations as it’s especially tough to be sad when others are celebrating.

We’ll use video to help with our prayers. This video uses verses and images from the Bible which could be seen as more ‘feminine’. There are also short prayers to use. Before you play the video, think of particular situations and mothers and orphans you want to remember. There is a crisis in parts of East Africa and sadly far too many places of conflict in our world.



Remember to visit our Lent Calendar daily:



Tags: Faith