Thursday, 5 November 2020

To Inspire You

Way back in January,I said my Word for the Year would be inspire
I said that  with God's grace, I hope that in this coming year I will inspire others to do greater things than they, or I, thought possible 

Well look how that turned out!

Bob remarked that in the previous few years, a number of companies had proclaimed they had a "20-20 Vision" with plans to achieve certain goals, reach targets, develop new strategies...and all that has just gone with the wind. 

I wondered if I had actually been able to inspire anyone to do anything in the last ten months. Finally I declared "I think I inspired Rosie!" That [plus of course, the arrival of George] will be the one of the best things about this somewhat dismal year.

In an effort not to fall into Eeyore like gloom and self pity, I have been focussing instead on other people who have inspired. You will have your own list - people in the public eye [Captain Sir Tom Moore must come high on the national list] and people you know personally. Here's two 'public' examples which I think are worth sharing.

Professor Rebecca Shipley, Healthcare Engineer at UCL. I don't know her personally, but Liz and Jon do, and Rosie was at Nursery with her children. She was selected last year for a campaign to showcase engineers who're making the world a better place, because of her research into cancer. That's awesome in itself- but this year she diverted her energies into working [with F1 Mercedes] on developing CPAP respirators, to enable people with covid19 to breathe easier, without the painful and  intrusive intubation of being put on a ventilator. When people say they cannot see the point of studying algebra, and a maths degree serves no useful purpose except to be a maths teacher, they need to see what this woman has done using her maths degree!

This inspiration is from Steph and Gaz in Manchester. "GRUB" in the Green Quarter is a street food venue - lots of small operators work there. In August, they got fed up with internet "influencers" asking for free food in exchange for good reviews. So they said "OK, if you buy your meal, we will donate an equal amount to local foodbanks and charities". And then when the government said bars and pubs could only remain open if they served 'proper' meals alongside the drinks, GRUB said "If you are a small outlet, we can pair you up with a street food provider [used to making great meals without the benefit of a full size catering kitchen] who can come and work at your venue, enabling you to stay open." - these strike me as two very inspired responses to some of the food-related problems generated by the pandemic. Well done GRUB!

Personal examples - honestly, I have to say that my immediate family have inspired me the most, and kept me going over the summer.

Liz - her determination to declutter, and her increasing skills at breadmaking, and nurturing houseplants. It is clearly affecting my homekeeping during lockdown, and she is a born encourager. Cycling together up a hill in Norfolk [yes, they do have them, whatever Noel Coward thought] she said "Keep pedalling,  Mum, maintain your momentum" and this phrase has stuck in my head - and kept me going in all sort of other tiring, challenging moments.

Steph - her amazing resilience, coping with pregnancy and a somewhat traumatic birth, followed by a difficult first few weeks of motherhood. And the 'normal' things - visits from friends and healthcare workers, support from family and friends, getting together to rejoice about the baby...these have been almost impossible. Yet she has bounced back, and sparkles as much as ever, she shared her experiences in a HuffPost article which I know has helped other young mums.

Bob - his year began with the sadness of his brother's death, and then I shared the covid19 with him. But he has adapted so quickly to all the changes in the way he does his job. Before the first lockdown, he'd set up a phone buddy system for those in the church fellowship. He conducted a funeral, with just a handful in the cemetery - but arranged for over 100 to share in the service via YouTube. Morning worship went overnight from 'all in the building' to 'recorded at home and loaded onto the Net' to 'recorded in the church, with a worship band' to 'livestream, with a small congregation' [and now we'll be back to home recording again, I expect] He's worked so hard, despite his postCovid fatigue, to maintain contact with people, encourage people, to comfort and help people. Especially he kept me going when we were 200 miles apart all summer. His faith, hope and love are an inspiration to so many.

So as we enter another time of lockdown, I'm thankful for these people who inspire me to keep going, to encourage others, and never to give up. Faith, hope and love remain - but the greatest of these is love.


  1. What a lovely post, Angela. You have inspired me with your acts of kindness, cheerfulness, and positive attitude.

  2. This is a beautiful post. Yes, Love is the greatest and we've been taught the best way, even if things are hard, to act with love. I am glad that your family inspires you so much- that's a good start to influencing overs if those around you alreasy do.
    I must say though- you may not think you've influenced much this year but this blog, your commitment to dedicate, inform, entertain, amuse, educate and nurture is hugely inspirational. You care and that is evident beyond the screen.

  3. Inspiring post. Kindness and a generous spirit makes for a happier world for everyone.

  4. Lovely, but of course you are a lovely person...and I do find that reading your words inspires me often. Not to mention a tea time together!

  5. You inspire others with your blog and in many other ways Angela. Your strong faith, energy and determination even when times are challenging is an inspiration to us all. Take care and stay safe both.

  6. I echo what Kenzie said - this is a blog that I look forward to every day - so thank you!

  7. Ang, You inspire us every day with your posts on your blog. I love reading what you write every day. It is so comforting and helpful. Thank you.

  8. Thankyou EVERYBODY for your really generous words - I'm inspired by the things which you all write. God bless you xxx


Always glad to hear from you - thanks for stopping by!
I am blocking anonymous comments now, due to excessive spam!