Margaret Skipworth is a Christian writer living in Yorkshire, England. For many years she worked as a newspaper journalist. Since starting to fiction in 1995 she has won and has been shortlisted in many short story competitions. Her stories have appeared in magazines in the UK and Australia, in anthologies and on the internet.
She provides a manuscript assessment service for the UK Association of Christian Writers. She is also a Home Study tutor and editor.
Margaret recently set up a ‘Reflections’ page on her website (www.margaretskipworth.com) and is inviting Christians all over the world to share their stories, meditations, poems and photos about some aspect of their Christian lives.
Here, she explains:
I was delighted last year when two of my meditations were accepted by The Secret Place and The Upper Room and I was then asked to write a piece for The Upper Room blog.
I received some lovely feedback from readers. Like me, these people were interested in reading about ‘ordinary’ Christians, from different countries and cultures, who had been touched by God’s love and grace in their daily lives.
Many Christians have a message they would like to tell others. But, not everyone can – or wants to – write to the strict guidelines laid down by the daily devotional booklets. So, I decided to open a page on my website for Christians to share their thoughts and stories. There are many ways to rejoice in God’s goodness and to spread His word – through testimonies, stories, anecdotes, poems, photos… I am hoping to have room for them all.
Some people have asked why I didn’t set up a separate Christian-themed blog. Well, my website is already visited by non-Christians, so I am praying they will also enjoy reading these ‘reflections’ and be prompted to find out more about Christianity for themselves.
I don’t have many ‘rules’ but submissions should be no more than around 300 words and I would like the tone to be warm and chatty, rather than preachy. Further guidelines can be found on the Contact page of my website.
I am planning to change the page every month – more often if I receive enough contributions. I am hoping this is a page people will look forward to reading on a regular basis.
Thank you so much for inviting me to ‘speak’ to you on your blog. It’s been a pleasure, and I am looking forward to reading some of your ‘reflections.’
Here’s an example:
One of my New Year’s resolutions for 2014 was to fit more exercise into my daily routine. So, on New Year’s Day, I set the alarm and leapt out of bed at 6.00 am to go for a brisk walk.
My husband was suffering from ‘man-flu,’ so he didn’t share my enthusiasm.
‘Bring me a cup of tea when you get back,’ he murmured.
When I set off, it was cold, damp and dark. On previous occasions when we’ve been out at that time we’ve seen dog-walkers, people waiting for buses to take them to work, teenagers delivering newspapers and people doing their shopping at the nearby 24-hour supermarket.
On New Year’s Day, I came across one dog walker and a hoodie withdrawing money from the cash-point at the supermarket. I presumed most people were ‘sleeping off’ the effects of their New Year’s Eve celebrations.
By the time I headed for home I was feeling quite miserable. But then, a glorious sunrise appeared before me and my spirits lifted.
Now, several months later, it’s always light – and sometimes sunny – at 6.30 am. We don’t have to do our walk in the dark and I am always thankful for the precious gift of these beautiful mornings.
A few days ago, as we enjoyed our walk, two Bible passages popped into my head – 2 Samuel 22:29 and Isaiah 50:10 – and I was reminded that many people live their whole lives in darkness because they don’t know our wonderful Saviour.
Jesus said ‘I am the Light of the World’ (John 8:12). As Christians it’s up to us to pray for people who don’t know Jesus and to spread the Good News. If we do this every day, how many more people will be walking in the light tomorrow?