Every great team has one. Every great player has been on one. Found in a small strip of no man’s land between the fields of endeavour and the Grandstand of compromise lies THE BENCH. It’s the place for recovery, reinvention and the rookie — waiting for his number to be called. It’s the bit between seasons and it’s the bit that says everything about the real you.

In the following narrative, DAVE GILPIN illuminates what he thinks is the greatest mistake of his ministry life — the absence of THE BENCH. From now on, THE BENCH IS BACK IN TOWN.