Real hope because of God’s “Love Actually” … Reflecting on a family which is not what it once was

Watching “Love Actually” has become a Christmas tradition for many. Why? It mixes the rawly honest – a faithful sister who gives up her chance at love and the unfaithful husband who squanders love – with the improbably wonderful - the Prime Minister of Britain finds love with the tea girl. We love it because it shows the messiness of real family life but leaves us with hope. Each time I watch it there is one line which tears at my heart; Karen, a middle aged married woman carrying the load of family life has realised that her husband has eyes for another. Karen knows he has given a necklace to her and finally says to him; “Would you wait around to find out if it's just a necklace, or if it's

Fixing Our Eyes on Jesus - Looking Ahead (Part 11)

(Read part 10 here) AS I PUT THE FINAL touches on this chapter, the year 2000 is washing over the planet. Through television we witness the world welcoming in a new millennium with endless fireworks and festivities. The global celebration also brings somber moments of reflection, as people everywhere consider ways to improve themselves and the quality of their lives. People resolve to exercise more, eat less, stop smoking, take vitamins, get organised, and spend more time with family. Christians promise themselves to do a better job with quiet time, maybe even read the whole Bible this year. But it seems to me that the best thing a woman can resolve to do for herself is to get serious abou

Fixing Our Eyes on Jesus - A Woman Theologian Fixes Her Eyes (Part 10)

(Read part 9 here) NO ONE WAS MORE surprised than I when I stood and cheered Linford Christie in the 1992 Olympics. Since then another runner has captivated my interest — an American woman whose running leaves Christie in the dust. Sara Pierrepont Edwards, wife of American theologian and preacher Jonathan Edwards, was a great theologian in her own right. They journeyed thirty-two years together in a marriage he described as “an uncommon union” and which was from the first distinguished by a depth of friendship only longed for in most marriages. “Her husband treated her as a fully mature being—as a person whose conversation entertained him, whose spirit nourished his own religious life, who


The period from Christmas and New Year is an odd time of year. The build up to Christmas is often a bit crazy – getting ready for Christmas, buying presents, catching up with people we haven’t seen since last Christmas! Life reaches a crescendo of busy-ness which peaks on Christmas Day, and then we fall in a heap on Boxing Day (or soon after, if Christmas overflows into Boxing Day as it often does). After weeks of end-of-year get togethers, Christmas parties and other festive events, the post-Christmas period can feel like paradise for introverts or a nightmare for extroverts. Christmas and New Year can also be a very emotional time of year. Excitement for children; busy-ness for parents

Fixing Our Eyes on Jesus - Straight Talk for Women (Part 9)

(Read part 8 here) WHICH BRINGS US BACK to our earlier question: Is theology really important for women? The writer to the Hebrews answers with a resounding yes, perhaps more emphatically than we are prepared to hear. Abruptly and with a measure of exasperation, he halts his discussion and, like a well-informed surgeon general, stamps a glaring warning label on his letter — to warn us not of the dangers of theology but of the hazards of getting too little of it. I can’t help feeling a bit shocked every time I get to this point in his letter. His words land like a punch, but it is straight talk women need to hear. There is so much more we would like to say about this. But you don’t seem to l

Mary, Did You Know?

Parenthood is a (presumably lifelong) state of wishing and hoping, what-ifs and wondering. It starts with pregnancy. What if something goes wrong? Let’s not tell anyone until we reach the “magic” three month mark. What sex will my baby be? Will I be a good parent? How much is labour going to hurt? After the birth of my son, I quickly discovered that this state only becomes more urgent. How do I stop this child from crying? What am I supposed to be doing now? Am I doing all the things I need to do to ensure his developmental needs are properly met? Why is he still crying? (If you’ve had a reflux baby, you will understand why crying warrants a second mention!) Who is he going to be when he gro

5 minutes with Angella ...

I was born in Uganda and grew up there. I am currently studying Civil and Structural Engineering in Adelaide. I hope to do great thing with that degree such as helping communities. I have two wonderful siblings and beautiful parents as my greatest cheer leaders. What’s your favourite bible passage & why? Hmm, I guess it depends on the season of life that I find myself in though my constant ones would have to be Roman 8: 28 and 38. Knowing that all things work together for my good gives me great peace and assurance that God is in control. From verse 38, Nothing separates us from the love of God. God’s love for us is unconditional and it’s an everlasting love. How do you keep your eyes fixed o

Fixing Our Eyes on Jesus - The Ripple Effect of a Woman's Theology (Part 8)

(Read part 7 here) THE SECOND SURPRISE, that the quality of my theology matters to others, was evident right from the start when friends would drop by my apartment for a late-night chat or meet me for coffee. Sooner or later, one of us would start talking about her troubles, and together we would work through how our theology related to the issues that were bothering us. Later, in marriage, my husband would need my theology for all sorts of situations that called for the best we both had to offer. When I held my infant daughter in my arms and faced the challenge of raising a little runner, my theology was (cartoonist’s opinions aside) the greatest gift I had to offer as a mother. Now, hard

What is the source of hope during a difficult Christmas?

[An example of the significance of humour: Moyra’s daughter had this t-shirt made after strangers looked uncomfortable with her extreme coughing in their vicinity, wondering what contagious plagues she was inflicting on them.] My friend Moyra is facing this Christmas with Stage IV lung cancer. When 'joy' and 'hope' are consumer slogans in shops, how can she articulate her experience of hope at this time? She should be the most hope-less person I know, but the contrary is true. Here are her responses to five questions I asked her about HOPE. Kara Martin What does the word hope mean to you right now? Hope - means so much, the source of strength in both our present circumstances, and also as w

5 minutes with Niki ...

Tell us a little about you I love Jesus, I'm a mum to 3 young beautiful and nutty children, married to my sweetheart Tim for nearly 13 years, I serve along side him in our church the Christian Family Centre in Adelaide where he is a pastor. I also happen to play the violin! Well actually Violin has been a rather huge part of my life ever since it captivated me at 4 & 1/2 years of age. I was a rambunctious, naughty and rather nutty child with parents who didn't know what to do with their energetic little girl and someone wise suggested to get me started on an instrument to give me something each day to channel all my energies into. I was given the violin to FIX my problematic behaviour, littl

5 minutes with Rina ...

Tell us a little about you... My name is Marina but everyone calls me Rina. I'm originally from Egypt and I have been in Australia for almost 2 years studying bachelor of Psychological Sciences. I was born in a Christian household but I only met God when I was 14 and have been on a journey getting to know Him better ever since! What's your favourite bible passage & why? There are so many but if I could pick one, it would 2 Corinthians 5:16-20 where Paul was talking about what it means to be in Christ. When I was a young Christian and read for the first time verse 17 where it says "..if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation, the old is gone, the new has come!", I was like "that's how I

Advent 2016 (Week 3 - Jesus is Good News for Everyone)

And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. Today in the town of David a Saviour has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.” Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying, “Glory to God in the highest heaven, and on earth peace to those on whom his favour rests.” Luke 2:

5 minutes with Belinda ...

Tell us a little about yourself (This is what my bio says) Belinda lives just north of the Harbour Bridge in Sydney with her husband Joel, an assortment of quirky pot-plants and a possum who refuses to leave their balcony. With a doctorate in Neuroscience and career in healthcare, Belinda has a love for understanding and navigating complex systems. After her first trip to the Philippines in 2003, Belinda’s passion for the archipelago nation was ignited, growing stronger with each and every visit. Stirred by the injustice of human trafficking brought to light by the A21 Campaign, Belinda was inspired to combine her love for the Philippines and empowering others with her skills in photography

Advent 2016 (Week 2 - Jesus is God With Us)

The name “Immanuel,” applied to Jesus by the writer of the gospel of Matthew, reveals one of the most distinctive and powerful beliefs of the Christian faith. Jesus is God With Us. This is how the birth of Jesus the Messiah came about: His mother Mary was pledged to be married to Joseph, but before they came together, she was found to be pregnant through the Holy Spirit. Because Joseph her husband was faithful to the law, and yet did not want to expose her to public disgrace, he had in mind to divorce her quietly.But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, “Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife,because what is c

Celebrating Christmas

I have a confession — I love Christmas advertising. Golden decorations, sumptuous feasts, attractive families with the correct number of children and in-laws gathered around the tree. I particularly love mothers in glamorous sleepwear and flawless hair and make-up, smiling at their children early on Christmas morn. Not to mention the spotless white clothes those children are wearing, which will somehow emerge unscathed from the day’s festivities. I love it because it’s beautiful and perfect…and a fantasy. I guess other people love it too—fantasy sells. But when I think about the memories I treasure most, it’s the small, personal things that come to mind (and, okay, one amazing Christmas lunc

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All images, words and materials are copyright protected and are the property of the author and / or Fixing Her Eyes. Please contact us at fixinghereyes (@) for permissions. January 2020