Like many dads, mine is at times embarrassing*. Whatever it is that is said or done to cause embarrassment might be accidental, it’s just part of parent/child relationship. Other times there is something purposeful to bring about embarrassment, and one thing my dad thinks is funny is to call out “We know what you’re doing!” … Continue reading All Seeing & All Knowing
When it comes to sin and suffering there is a significant amount if debate, even amongst Christians - mostly because we can't actually know for sure and so how we read and understand the Bible determines our line of thinking. There are questions about the so-called original sin - did Adam and Eve bring sin … Continue reading Blessed Suffering
I am pretty sure we all know the story of Adam, Eve, the serpent and the fruit. Told in Genesis 3 immediately following the descriptions of creation and all that is good the Bible introduces the theme of what we know as ‘The Fall’. Interestingly there is very little description of the goodness of creation … Continue reading Falling Into Temptation
Scripture does not say: “For God so love the world that he gave sickness and disease” “For God so love the world that he gave natural disasters” “For God so love the world that he gave pious prophets, apostles and preachers” “For God so love the world that he gave impossible tests and suffering” No, the Bible says: “For God so love the world that he gave his one and only son” (John 3:16)
Over the past few weeks a couple of events have been on my mind (Holocaust Memorial Day & a planned UK Tour by evangelist Franklin Graham). They are completely unrelated and yet both leave me with the resounding message of the importance of loving our neighbours, of not 'othering' those who are different from ourselves.
My wife and I enjoy making up stories about people. We might be out for coffee, sitting on a train or walking through town. Just based on what someone is wearing or how they present themselves we imagine a whole back story to their life, relationships they have or don't have, and what they are … Continue reading A Vision for Church: Listening
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
It was an honour to hear first-hand from men and women who had survived the holocaust. A few years from now there will be no more survivors; their generation will have passed on from this life. As he spoke Peter said, “Try not to hate; hatred gets you nowhere.” I want to learn the strength and power of the decision to love.
Jesus preached that we should love God and love our neighbours. This week I heard a preacher subtly preach condemnation, encouraging the congregation to boldly stand up for rights, to be ready to fight. It was a sermon that misused scripture and encouraged hatred for anything that is other. It was a sermon that subtly made space for racism, sexism and homophobia. The church is broken because it’s forgotten to love her neighbours and is choosing to fight them instead.
In the days following the resurrection of Jesus his disciples had their eyes and minds opened to things they had not seen or understood previously. I pray that the church today would have its eyes opened and be a place; a people; a community of hope for the world. Open the eyes of your Church, Lord.