Monday, 20 January 2014

What If...?

Do you go to church?  If you do, I have a few questions to ask.

How far away from where you live is the church that you go?

What are the reasons you go to said church?  Is it the preaching? The music? The kids work?

If you travel out of your local community to a church in another community why have you not tried to go to a church in your local community?

I don't mean go for a month or even a year but for a few years and really give it a go. And why not invite others who live locally and travel out to another church to go to a local church too. Why not together look for how you can GIVE to this local church, use your gifts in this church, GIVE energy, encouragement, support, ideas, prayer and most importantly, love and relationship.

'The church is too traditional'

'The church's worship is really poor'

Tuesday, 14 January 2014

Benefits Street and Nazism

Benefits Street on Channel 4 is causing a stir.

There have been calls for the show to be taken off air, Twitter death threats and many feeling uncomfortable and uneasy with the way the show portrays various people from various backgrounds and circumstances.

Without doubt when watching it you need a very large pinch of salt and a way of seeing through the propaganda.

Wednesday, 8 January 2014

Revolution? What Revolution?

Today human relationships are frail, easily fall apart and are as easy to break as they are to tie together. Electronic communication allows us to have relationships with a safety device; the possibility of instant connection and disconnection. 

We live in a consumerist world whereby we are encouraged to constantly upgrade what we have, to get the next new thing and to replace the old. The nostalgia marketing movement that is being used right now is an example of how effective and ingrained this view of the world is. 

Nostalgia marketing causes us to remember how things used to be, the toys we used to play with, the clothes we used to have, the way things were in our relationships with each other. So we long for the good old days. The advertisers then tell us we can have the good old days today by buying something new but making us believe we are simply going back to what we used to have. All we are really doing is upgrading and casting away what we already have. It causes us to be dissatisfied with what we already have and long for something else. Electronic communication along with consumerist culture directly impacts how we relate to one another and it means that getting rid of the unwanted, much more than the act of getting hold of the desired, is the meaning of individual freedom.

Our detachment in our relationships is but a symptom of how we are encouraged to become ‘someone else’ through this constant ‘upgrading’. Rather than seeking salvation or redemption which call us to life-long discipleship, we seek instantaneous results of transformation. Polish writer Andrzej Stasiuk puts it like this,