Skip to main content
Shauna Niequist, introducing her new book Bittersweet: Thoughts on Change, Grace, and Learning the Hard Way.



'The idea of bittersweet is changing the way I live, unraveling and re-weaving the way I understand life. Bittersweet is the idea that in all things there is both something broken and something beautiful, that there is a moment of lightness on even the darkest of nights, a shadow of hope in every heartbreak, and that rejoicing is no less rich even when it contains a splinter of sadness. 'It's the practice of believing that we really do need both the bitter and the sweet, and that a life of nothing but sweetness rots both your teeth and your soul. Bitter is what makes us strong, what forces us to push through, what helps us earn the lines on our faces and the calluses on our hands. Sweet is nice enough, but bittersweet is beautiful, nuanced, full of depth and complexity. Bittersweet is courageous, gutsy, audacious, earthy.
'This is what I've come to believe about change: it's good, in the way that childbirth is good, and heartbreak is good, and failure is good. By that I mean that it's incredibly painful, exponentially more so if you fight it, and also that it has the potential to open you up, to open life up, to deliver you right into the palm of God's hand, which is where you wanted to be all long, except that you were too busy pushing and pulling your life into exactly what you thought it should be. 'I've learned the hard way that change is one of God's greatest gifts, and most useful tools. Change can push us, pull us, rebuke and remake us. It can show us who we've become, in the worst ways, and also in the best ways. I've learned that it's not something to run away from, as though we could, and that in many cases, change is a function of God's graciousness, not life's cruelty.'

Popular posts from this blog

Guest Blog: Esther in Indonesia

I'm delighted to welcome Esther Ross-Watson to my Blog today! She is a dearly loved member of our Kerith family. She and her late husband Michael served as missionaries for many years. Esther bravely made the decision to travel again, and she has recently returned from Indonesia. Here's her story:  Whilst Michael was on his last days on earth in August 2017 he received a request from the Island of Madura, Indonesia asking us to return to the town of Pamekasen, Madura, Indonesia where we had begun our Missions work in July 1973 exactly one year after we were married. They were keen to have us see what God had been doing in the years since we’d moved on and we excitedly said ‘Yes’ we will come!   Obviously that had to go on hold for a while because I didn’t feel I could, or even wanted to go alone! Anyway around March/April time 2018, I begun to feel a gentle nudging of the Holy Spirit urging me to think some more about it! It was like a feeling of wanting to know

3 Little Bottles

Thought I'd mix it up today and do something lighthearted here. I popped into town this morning (as an aside, anyone else still incredulous that "new Bracknell / The Lexicon is so great and that it's really here to stay?!)  Anyhow, I popped into town for a quick wander and bought 3 "essentials" I'd run out of, so I thought I'd share them with you - and of course I'd love to hear about your 3 recent essential purchases. 1 Contact lense solution I've worn glasses since Secondary school, and contact lenses since I left Uni. Gas permeables - great for me - slightly perilous in swimming pools / the sea / other people's sinks (£80 to replace). They work for me - and so a couple of bottles of solution each month keep me going.I ran out a couple of days ago, so it was £4.70 well spent for clean lenses and clear eyesight. 2. "Buffet" by The Ordinary This was a new one for me, a present I received last Christmas. I LOVE it and can

Clare's Macedonia reflections

You'll remember that in Ma y I went to Macedonia?  I took a team of wonderful Kerith women, and together we supported Marija Vuletic as she led  the Vredna Conference in Skopje (the capital city) Macedonia. It was such a rich time (challenging too at times!)  we gave, but  we also received so much. It was a real privilege to stand alongside these wonderful women - our sisters in Christ. Here are Clare's reflections of our time together. Spending time with the women in Macedonia spoke to me so much about our world-wide family in faith. God really is bringing people from every people group into relationship with Him! We were joined by women from Serbia and the Roma community. I think joy in hardship sums up what many of the women are experiencing right now. Some have only been believers for a very short time, but their joy in belonging to Jesus and being on a journey with Him was so clear. I spent time talking to some of the youngest women at the conference. A few of