Katherine Thompson | 4 Apr 2023
Katherine Thompson - The Acorn Press Q & A
What faith book has been influential for you?
I like reading books by Sarah Bessey and Rachel Held Evans because they comfort me with a female perspective on the hard things of faith and life that few people are willing to wrestle with and acknowledge.
What is your go-to piece of scripture?
God tends to lean on me with different images and ideas from time to time to remind me I am not alone, and to keep me on track. At the moment it is the image of Jesus as my leader and shepherd, walking before me, holding a rod and staff. My role is just to follow. (Notice how sheep usually do this without asking too many difficult questions!). Psalm 23.
Apart from Jesus, obviously, which person in the Bible would you most like to have dinner with?
I think a deep theological discussion with John could be interesting, because he has such an emphasis on loving God and other people, and abiding. He must have been a warm, caring, and empathic deep thinker.
What is your favourite meal?
When are you happiest?
Being alone outside in nature with no one talking to me.
What words or phrases do you most over-use?
Sure. But, why? I don’t know. What do you mean? I don’t understand.
Where can you see God’s hand in your creative process of writing?
In psychology we talk about flow, which is where you get totally emersed in a creative task and it just happens – like you’re in the zone. This is what it feels like when I write books. But, theologically I think my books are more about God speaking through me and this is why they just come out. Sometimes I read back over things I have written several months ago and wonder how I did it. The process is not just about me.
What is your favourite writing procrastination activity?
I find it incredibly hard to sit still and write. I fidget, get up, walk around, do the dishes, hang out the washing, talk to the cat, all the while still engaged in the process.
What spiritual practice do you find the most helpful?
As I am not a one thing person, I go through phases where I do different spiritual practices. In the past 12 months I have contemplated images from scripture that God has placed in my mind. For example, sitting at Jesus feet like Mary with no other agenda but to be there in his presence. I have spent hours and hours gardening, with my cat, walking in parks, sitting still and talking to God, focussing on something like a leaf or insect and being amazed, reading the same scripture at the start and end of each day, writing out my thoughts and listing things I am thankful for.
Which spiritual practice do you find the most difficult?
I am very bad at praying for long periods of time using my thoughts. I get totally distracted, think about other things, fidget and get up and do something. And if someone has asked me to pray for them I am most likely to forget to do it regularly. The thought of getting up at 5am to pray for a whole hour seems just impossible. I would never succeed if I tried. So, I have long accepted that this is not my spiritual gift and is something that I will always struggle with but still persist trying. It is weird though because for me sitting to pray contemplatively without relying on words is so much easier. I can do that, and do it happily.
What is your favourite animal, and why?
I love animals generally. They are awesome. I often rescue worms off the footpath, or baby birds who fall out of their nests. I would love our python a little more if he would just stop slithering so much. He has snake ADHD.
If you were a plant, which one would you be?
A fern. Sounds relaxing.
Which book character would you most like to be?
My favourite book of all time is Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte. I don’t think I would like to be her so much as I identify with her in many ways. She was deep feeling, resilient and wise.
Which Old Testament prophet do you most relate to?
Jeremiah seemed to get into some tight situations and had a hard time. I have learnt that just because God uses us in ministry doesn’t mean life is easy and great all the time. It can be a huge challenge and this makes the ministry even more miraculous because it is God doing it and not us.
If you had to witness to one of the events recorded in the Bible, which one would it be?
I think it would be amazing to listen to Jesus in person and be with him.
What is your favourite worship song?
God Is On The Throne, by We The Kingdom, but this is constantly changing…
What is your favourite song (there is no shame here, you are among friends)?
Dare You to Move, by Switchfoot.
Katherine Thompson works in the area of mental health as a therapist, lecturer, author and researcher. She is passionate about supporting young people with mental health challenges to live their best life
Books by Katherine
The Discipline of Suffering
Find meaning in pain and suffering with practical strategies and life skills. Redeem your story and find hope in the midst of adversity.
Breathe: Christ Centred Mindfulness
In this follow up to her award-winning book, Christ Centred Mindfulness, Dr Katherine Thompson provides exercises to help you take time out of your busy life – to stop, breathe and listen to God.