Four Way Faith Part Three - Out: God's Gift of Neighbours. We must follow Jesus’ example with Zacchaeus to accept the hospitality of those who different from ourselves, who others look down upon and speak ill of, even those who cause harm to others. Through accepting the gift of others we break down barriers and our lives, others lives and the kingdom of God benefit. When new people move into the houses, streets and towns around us (even our churches) it can be tempting to complain about change, to reflect on the way things used to be, or the people we used to see. Our challenge as Christian’s is to have the view of seeing the outsiders, the others, our neighbours as gifts, welcoming and accepting the gift they are and the gifts they bring.
Do you remember science classes in high school? Other than Bunsen burners and the Van der Graff Generator, me neither! One thing that you learn in biology is about life. All living things apparently have 7 life processes that indicate that they are in fact living. Perhaps you recall MRS NERG... (Movement, Respiration, Sensitivity, Nuitrition, … Continue reading A Vision for Church: Journeying
In a conversation recently a fellow pastor seemed to be interested in some of the things I was saying about racial, disability and gender justice. He asked to take my details so we could arrange to meet in order for him to learn more about the 'justice agenda'. Of course I am more than happy … Continue reading A Vision for Church: Just
When I sat down to write about the church being hopeful and offering hope I had in mind to write about being a resurrected people, living with the faith that despite the darkest of times we face we live in the hope that resurrected life is just around the corner. I come to this but … Continue reading A Vision for Church: Hopeful
About six months after my wife and I married I was diagnosed with depression. I have been known to make the rather obvious joke about the cause of my depression being married life, in reality this couldn't be further from the truth. I likely suffered with depression for years before I ever met my wife. … Continue reading A Vision for Church: Liberating
I will admit I can find it somewhat pretentious to talk about the prophetic. I think it comes from the experience of preachers claiming to be prophetic, having prophecies or claiming a title of Prophet and making bold claims that God is speaking to them about specific issues of the future. Frequently these claims are … Continue reading A Vision for Church: Prophetic
A few years ago I was doing some research about the eucharist or communion for my own understanding of the different beliefs people have about what happens. The different beliefs lead to a variety of ways of sharing the bread and wine, who is authorised to serve the elements and who is permitted receive them. … Continue reading A Vision for Church: Inclusive
Gifted, Diverse, Fragile, Disabled and Scarred Gifted Body It is fairly common to refer to the church as a body. This stems from the writing in the New Testament attributed to Paul which refers to the church as the 'body of Christ' (Ephesians 4:12). Paul's use of the body as analogy for the church refers … Continue reading A Vision for Church: Body
I have spent the majority of my life attending and being involved in different church communities. Over the years I've served in Anglican, Baptist, Elim, Methodist, United Methodist as well as non-denominational or 'free' churches. Regardless of the denomination or the location the members of any particular local church will often describe their worshipping community … Continue reading A Vision for Church: Family
Strangely, as the day begins with such a precious moment it is also the day I feel most home sick. I am comfortable, safe, back amongst all my creature comforts and more precious loved one. Yet I have the feelings of homesickness, a longing to be back in Zimbabwe.