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Ascend Higher: The Podcast

Articles in Ascend often need to be ruthlessly edited down to fit within the required word count. To give space to discuss certain articles in greater depth, the TFT staff team will be recording occasional podcasts under the banner “Ascend Higher”, covering the issues raised in a more conversational style. To hear it for yourself, you can use the audio player below, or find the corresponding articles toward the bottom of this page. Also look for us wherever you normally listen to your podcasts by searching "Ascend Higher".

When my pastor decided I was unfit for ministry

I recently had to leave a local church because the new pastor and I disagreed about same-sex attraction (SSA). That church was no longer helping me grow in the likeness of Christ or allowing me to follow God’s call on my life for His kingdom. It was a prayer-filled, yet painful process to decide I could no longer be part of that church. So how did I get to that point and how did the pastor’s perspective impact my spiritual health during that time?

Cultivating Christian resilience

I was sitting in the public gallery of Church House on 15th November last year. As the afternoon session closed, bringing another cycle of LLF(Living in Life and Faith) debates to an end, I caught the eye of the lady sitting to my right. We silently shook our heads at each other in polite and pained disappointment at what had happened. Giving a look around the circular hall, she said, “I can’t feel Jesus here anywhere. I just don’t know where He is.”

Art and sexuality podcast

videoIn this conversation, Ruth talks with Ros Clarke about how she uses art and craft to consider matters of sexuality, celibacy and singleness. She explores how art has been a way of bringing a message of biblical truth about sexuality to the church.

Should I stay?

Stuart: We're going to be looking at what would happen if someone’s considering leaving their church or denomination because the leadership's departed from orthodox teaching. Do you have any general thoughts on this?

Ed: I'm part of the Church of England that is in the process of walking away from orthodoxy. My local church is my family. I’m the third generation of my family to work in an Anglican church. I’ve given the last 25 years of my life to serving churches.  
Leaving church is a big deal

How God set me free

In my late teens, I adopted a stray budgie that had flown in through my next door neighbour’s window and landed on his head whilst he was asleep. After trying unsuccessfully to locate the owner of the bird, I kept the budgie, naming it Wally (after the neighbour), not knowing that it was actually a female! Uneasy with keeping birds in cages, I left Wally’s cage door open for her to come and go as she pleased. She loved to have a fly around the room, but always returned to her cage after her excursions.

Emotional dependency podcast

In this extended conversation, Simon and Ruth discuss the theme of emotional dependency, where friendship turns into an unhealthy obsession with the other person. They share candidly from their own experiences of such relationships and how they found their way through the pitfalls to redeem what was good in the friendships.


"Sticky" arguments

Some revisionist theologians’ arguments have sticking power because they resonate with our cultural norms. Put another way, they are persuasive because they draw on modern Western values and assumptions. This brief article considers four “sticky” arguments and how to respond well from a biblical perspective. 

Are you a good waiter?

What sort of waiter are you? I’m not a very good one.

Have you ever joined in with a group singing, “Why are we waiting?” Perhaps you were hungry, the food had not yet arrived and you were impatient! We live in a culture of impatience.

He thinks he might be gay!

In this conversation, Jamie (a same-sex attracted TFT member) talks to his good friend Matt about how they have each encouraged one another through their friendship.