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The London Institute for Contemporary Christianity

Never miss a thing!

 

Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret.

Life will be better when…

For several decades, Are You There God? It’s Me, Margaret was banned from libraries because of its candid discussion of boys, bras, puberty, periods, sexual discovery, and sanitary towels.

‘Whoa! I didn’t sign up for a sex ed lesson.’

Don’t worry, I’m not going to give you hush-hush guidance on the birds and the bees.

Believe it or not, I found this film – filled with oh-so-relatable moments from my own teenage years – spoke to my 20-something self. Throughout the story, Margaret and her friends long to transition into adulthood. In a similar way, we convince ourselves life will be better when we reach the next stage – when we get married, secure a promotion, have a baby, or pay off our mortgage.

But the film reminds us that, however hard we try, we cannot write our life story because the Lord’s plan will prevail (Proverbs 19:21). Just as Nancy’s spinning bottle game doesn’t lead to a snog with her class crush and the Pre-Teen Sensations’ exercises fail to increase their cup size, SALT isn’t the catch-all solution for finding a spouse, meticulous menstrual calendars won’t necessarily lead to pregnancy, and professional development courses won’t guarantee a promotion at work.

The Lord may choose to bless you with these things, but it will be in his timing. And reaching these milestone moments won’t make your woes vanish. Just before the credits, Margaret’s crying in the bathroom. Her first period’s arrived. It’s the moment she’s been waiting for, praying for, longing for… but it isn’t all it was cracked up to be. There is joy, but it’s painful and messy.

So, instead of spending hours dreaming about what life could be like, focus on the blessings and opportunities in the here and now. Relish late-night chats with your gal pals or bachelor buddies, speaking kindly about others and quashing gossip – you’ll miss these if you end up having children! And, if you’ve got young kids, don’t wish away the nappy days. These are precious moments to show Jesus’ sacrificial love to your children, to point them to the servant king.

Your relationship status, job, and housemates are no coincidence – for this season, it’s where God has placed you. And so, commit to joyfully working with him to see his kingdom come near to these relationships and spaces. It’s for your good and his glory.

Sophie Sanders
Marketing & Communications Executive, LICC

Comments

  1. Since getting a stage 3 cancer diagnosis and starting treatment with a quite reasonable outlook, life certainly seems more intricate and beautiful. They say make friends with your illness so it can teach you new things. True. And accept it from God to learn more about the depth of his love

    By Bill  -  2 Jun 2023
    • Thank you, Bill.
      2 days ago my son-in-law was told his migraine is a plum sized tumour in his brain. The tsunami has broken over us. But we are clinging on to the Lord. Who else knows us better than we know ourselves? Who else is full of mercy and compassion? Who else is there in the darkness of the night alone in a hospital bed? God is our hope and our joy. Always.
      May the Lord watch over you and keep you in you recovery.

      By Janet Haskett  -  2 Jun 2023
  2. I don’t think God has a ‘Plan’ for our lives in that sense at all. The universe and what happens in it follows its own twists and turns. It is the same in my life. ‘Stuff’ happens, according to the grand lottery of life and other people’s decisions – and yes, maybe too, sometimes, God’s direct action or some ‘blessing’ or other. In the midst of the warp and woof of daily reality I respond – and so does God. His ‘plan’ is not to make me follow some pre-determined life story but to make me more like Christ. That’s it. That’s His only plan – and how we get there depends on lots of things along the way. I can rest in the knowledge that what God started He will finish. Philippians 1:6

    By Andrew Holden  -  2 Jun 2023
  3. Its so true, often its only when we look back we see how we have been blessed and how much we have learned and grown from the trials we have been through. We also realise how quickly things change and our children grow up, we need to treasure each day and the memories and gifts each day brings.

    By Paula Groves  -  2 Jun 2023

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