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The Sandbag Times Issue No: 51

The Veterans Magazine

KEVIN LLOYD-THOMAS BEAT

KEVIN LLOYD-THOMAS BEAT PTSD A cracking new self help guide to beat PTSD by Kevin Lloyd-Thomas In May 2011, Australian Infantry combat veteran Kevin Lloyd-Thomas walked away from suicide. The book, “Beat PTSD - How A Combat Soldier Conquered Chronic PTSD To Live A Life That Truly Matters And How You Can Too,” is the worlds first and only “How to/Self help book, written by a veteran specifically for serving men and women, veterans and their families. It hasa global audience. Grabbing life back by the throat, Kevin developed and implemented specific plans and strategies to turn his life around. It’s about “Parachute thinking.” “Your mind is like a parachute - It only works when it’s open” It's about surviving and thriving in peace time after returning from a war zone, says Kevin. By implementing the five step life plan, setting your own goals, with the seven pillars of success, tailoring it to suit your own requirements, you'll be able to set yourself up on the path to achieving whatever it is in life you want, no matter what your current circumstances might be. Raw, Riveting and Real. Says Tim Thomas, Special Forces Medic in Afghanistan “Beat PTSD” is like a beacon in the wilderness. This unique book is for those still serving, or for those struggling in the civilian world, those torn apart by PTSD, fearful of asking for help because of stigma, knowing their career is under direct threat. Beat PTSD addresses the key issues of veterans families breaking up due to PTSD, related domestic violence, and the distressing effects on children. GET HELP NOW: NHS England South East 020 3317 6818 | 24 www.sandbagtimes.co.uk

HAVE FAITH Come Unto Me all you who are weary HI. My name is Andrew Hall, and have taken the responsibility of writing for the faith corner. I am not a clergyman, however I am a brother in the Tertiary order of the Society of St Francis. This has been a recent development for me in a 48 years of acknowledging Jesus Christ as my Lord and Saviour. Like many of the readers here, though, I have served. My service was in a country called Rhodesia – now Zimbabwe – during the long and bitter war there 1967 – 1979. I grew up with the war and eventually fought in it until the ceasefire on A friend at the church I worshipped at, at that point of time, suggested I go for a retreat at the Society of St Francis House at Glasshampton. In April 2001 I duly did so. It is quite an austere building, a former stable block at the end of a bridle path near Shrawley in Worcestershire. I rang the bell and the guest brother came in, wearing his cassock. Stepping into the cloisters, was like going back several hundred years. Brother Raymond Christian showed me to my room, explained who the SSF European Province were, then showed me the daily timetable. He departed with a gentle smile. At first I noticed the extraordinary silence in the place. I walked over to the window ledge, rested my elbows on the lintel then prayed that the Lord would bless my stay. At this point I burst in to tears, deep heart wrenching tears. It was during this time that the word of the Lord came to me, a verse often read but not quite understood “Likewise the Spirit also helps our weakness: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought but the Spirit himself makes intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.” Romans 8:26. I felt more certain at that point that the Holy Spirit was interceding for me. After that came sleep. I sat in the armchair and started reading from the Psalms, then before I knew it I had been asleep for three hours. I went to the evening meal at 18.30 and then returned to my room. I slept straight through from about 19.30 to 07.00 the next morning. Another verse flagged itself up to me “Come to me, all you that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.” Matthew 11:28. In the years since, I have learnt the real value of solitude and silence with the Lord. We fill our lives with noise and activities. Many Christians pray at length but spend no time in silence meditating on the word of God. Silence allows us to concentrate on Christ. The very concept of rest, is silence. When the guns fell quiet on 11th November 1918, the quiet was great. When the ceasefire came in Rhodesia, we were withdrawn from deployments and the news made us quiet. For many, all we had ever known in Rhodesia was war. I was 7 when it started on a small scale, then it grew year by year to 1979. The peace that man brings never lasts, but the peace of God is everlasting. December 28th 1979. In later years, after moving to the UK, I spent a year with the Territorial Army before being asked to do some part time work by another Government Department which offered more excitement. I am sad to say that my marriage of 18 years came to an end in 2000 when that awful Decree Absolute came through the post. The greater part of the break up there was in part my inability to settle into the civilian world and missing active service immensely. The stress of having to move country not once but twice had taken its toll. To the non-believer I urge you to seek Christ with all your heart. To the believer, take time out for some peace and quiet with the Lord. He will speak to you in ways that amaze you. Jesus himself said to his own disciples “And he said to them, Come you yourselves apart into a desert place, and rest a while: for there were many coming and going, and they had no leisure so much as to eat.” In coming weeks I shall be exploring this message of Silence, Peace, being still before the Lord. So a blessing from Philippians 4:7 “And the peace of God, which passes all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” GET HELP NOW: NHS England North 0191 441 5974 www.sandbagtimes.co.uk 25 |

SBT Back Issues

The Sandbag Times Issue No: 50
The Sandbag Times Remembrance Special

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