Home' Christchurch Mail : August 1st 2013 Contents 16 CHRISTCHURCH MAIL, AUGUST 1, 2013
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Phone: 358 5443
Looking for God
In older days people often viewed God as a
wise old man who lived beyond the clouds.
I think there are some helpful parts to
this image but it also has some problems.
Yuri Gagarin the first Soviet cosmonaut to
circle the earth proudly announced on behalf
of his so called atheist nation that he had gone
above the clouds and he hadn't seen God there.
Meister Eckhart a great mystic from the early
Middle Ages gave us another image of God
which I think is very helpful. He said, "nothing
in all creation is so like God as stillness".
He believed that if we are looking for the
presence of God we don't need to go looking
beyond the clouds, but we can find God in
stillness. Another mystic St Teresa of Avila
would tell us that, "God is the friend of silence."
George Fox who founded the Society of Friends,
discovered that when you become silent you
can become aware of what he called an inner
witness or true self that he said was immortal
and divine. Some of us would call this our soul
speaking. God is found not beyond the clouds
but deep within.
When Jesus told his disciples how to pray or
discover God he said they should go to a
still place where they will be undisturbed.
Today he would add it needs to be a place where
the smart phone, the internet, and the constant
interruptions that break into our lives are
switched off. Such a place may be in the garden,
going for a gentle walk, or in a special private
place where you can be
alone and quiet.
Without silence and
solitude in our lives it is
hard to find God, and
it is hard to be authentic
to our true selves.
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Your local child restraint experts
Parenting Adolescents Seminar
Learn about resolving conflict, dealing with manipulation,
the parenting dilemma, boundaries and more..
Tuesday 13 August 7.30pm to 9pm
At Riccarton High
Gold coin entry.
Tickets at www.eventbrite.com
for more information
Phone: 337 9452
TOUGHLOVE and Riccarton High as
part of the Neighbourhood Trust Parenting
Week present a
Chrissy MacPherson - NCVN
Call 027 479 5005
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guidance for parents
of teens and younger
PARENT HELP: Sytske
Oldenburger is the Upper
South Island chairperson for
TOUGHLOVE, a parent
support group helping
We provide ongoing support for as
long as a parent feels they need
or want it.
For many parents of teenagers with challenging
behaviours, feelings of failure, guilt and
embarrassment can be overwhelming
Back in 1979, psychologists David and Phyllis
York were facing their own family crisis and called
together a group of caring parents to help them
deal with their situation.
The support and advice they discovered in
this group inspired them to found the TOUGHLOVE
Local branch administrator Louise Densem
believes one of the most valuable things parents
gain from the organisation's programme is the
realisation they're not alone in their experiences.
TOUGHLOVE has developed a one-and-a-half
hour interactive workshop offering parenting tips
for those with pre-teens or teens.
''It's an opportunity for people to learn a bit
more about our parent support group programme.
''We cover the parenting dilemma, asking 'is this
an issue I should be getting involved in or should
I be leaving it for my teenager to deal with?' as well
as boundaries and consequences, and ways of
resolving conflict with good communication,''
Co-hosted with Riccarton High School, the
workshop, on August 13, is running as part of a
series of events during the Neighbourhood Trust
Parenting Week, August 11 to 17.
Entry to the seminar is by gold coin and
participants receive a handout/workbook.
Louise describes the parent support group
programme as unique.
''We provide ongoing support for as long as a
parent feels they need or want it.
''Some parents attend for six to 10 weeks, and
that's all they need.
''Others may want longer term support to
help with the changing nature of their
TOUGHLOVE groups are led by people with first-
hand experience of the issues participants are
facing, and they have been through the
Louise explains that parents struggling with their
adolescents' challenging behaviour can start
attending a programme at any meeting, so the
longest they have to wait is a week.
''Once they're in a parent group, they'll have
access to support 24/7.''
To book a seat for the Parenting Adolescents
seminar, visit the website: eventbrite.com or call
Louise Densem at TOUGHLOVE, on 337 9452.
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