Saturday, 16 February 2013

So what do you think?

So before you watch, just want to make a couple of comments...

There is bad language in it. If your a Christian it might make you a bit cross but see it through and then think about some of the questions below (not necessarily them all)...



Ricky Gervais said he believed this till he was eight. What do you think changed his mind at eight?

What do you think about the fact that he still owns the book?

What things that he said did you disagree with and why?

What did you agree with and why?

How important or relevant is it that we communicate the truth of God to children?

How does the following film make you think after seeing the first?




Just to help us reflect on what we do and why!

Tuesday, 12 February 2013

Mothering Sunday or Mothers day?

A few months later and I am still trying to get it, am I miss educated in my thinking? I am not wanting everyone to agree with me and think the same as me I just want to understand what I think and why I think it.

So lets look at the facts: Mothers day
Originated in the United States and started in about 1870 and is linked with a social activist called Julia Ward Howe. Unfortunately Howe did not manage to establish the 'holiday' enough and it petered out. It wasn't until 1908 when Anna Jarvis finally managed to cemented into the American calender. It became so popular that the president made it a public holiday and eventually it was renamed 'Hallmark holiday'. Unfortunately Jarvis began to regret what she had created when it became over commercialised. On a positive note Mothers day in the USA sees the biggest attendance to church after Christmas, biggest sales of gifts and the biggest holiday for long distance phone calls.

Mothering Sunday
When Mothering Sunday originated is unclear but it is talked about in the 16th century. The churches would hold a service on a particular Sunday between Christmas and Easter. It was seen as a weekend or day when servants could go and visit their families and spend time together. They would often do things together as a church. It was very much about togetherness not one individual.

Now don't get me wrong I love my mum and she will get a card, but what I like about the concept of Mothering Sunday is that it's about all-ages, no boundaries, it doesn't have to even be about family. No one needs to feel left out or under valued because of their status in a family.

Also mothering seems to be like a role for any person (even perhaps men) and is not dependant on whether you've physically had a baby. I have known some great people who have had mothering roles and not had their own children. Surely these people are important to recognise? Especially as they may be overlooked.

So now the day is almost upon us British again. What do you think?


My lovely mum

Facts from: Wikipedia and BBC

Sunday, 3 February 2013

Church.

It's sometimes hard to define what church is because as soon as you shape one view another idea comes along and makes you question what church is once again. This isn't necessarily a bad thing, in fact it's brilliant because if we don't reflect on our shaped opinions they could become stayed and stale opinions and we don't want that.

So after a week at college learning about the emerging church and fresh expressions I was thinking about church when I came across this video which I think expresses church really well. Let's keep God at the heart.


Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Young people, mission and Wales?!

Dangerously been thinking! So I am writing my dissertation for my MA on Mission to young people in Wales (specifically Anglican and St David's diocese). At the moment I am excited by the prospect of unpacking some findings but trying to prepare myself for a reality check.

I have grown to love Wales dearly, the sound of rain on the roof of my house, the smell of the sea, the sight of rolling hills that stretch to the ocean. The feel of the wild wind blowing in your hair and the taste of fish an chips on the prom. But it's more than sentimental mush and I can't even believe I am publicly admitting this. But this place has an endearing quality, a helplessness and a need.

So lets get down to what I am trying to say. There are some harrowing statistics that say that only 1% of young people have contact with the church in this diocese. We try and make excuses and avoid the harsh truth, but it's there on paper. The church is loosing touch? I just don't know. Has our negativity towards the church brought about a demise - a self fulfilling prophecy? Have we blinded ourselves to the positive things that are going on? Has increased demands on our lives and finances sucked us so dry that we have nothing left to give?

2 Samuel 16

Lets face it David had some rough times, he'd been anointed king whilst still a teenager and had since then been running from a crazy king who swung between being threatened by him, to liking him, to genuinely wanting him dead. The Israelite people have been up and down in their relationship with God and David has just been leading a rabble of bandits. Finally he is there, he's made it to the throne, probably totally drained wondering how to start leading a people that have been at war. And what does he do? He strips back to basics literally. He knows that Jerusalem needs it's God back. Firstly he arranges for the Ark of the covenant to be brought back home. Yes there was a slight blip in the middle but a reminder of God's holiness, which should not be forgotten. He knew it was needed as a focal point for the nation and he was not going to shy away from it's importance, so off he goes in his underwear to meet it as it arrives at the city. Making a fool of himself? Probably, but surely what he is saying in the act is more important. I am not totally sure - but correct me if I am wrong - that king David knew how he was going to sort out the mess that was facing him and he  knew he needed God. He was aware of his own failings and need for humility before a Holy God. And there he was, up there dancing away, not dressed in finery but before God as he was.

So what can it teach us? Well perhaps I want to say this is what this teaches me and reminds me is that things are disheartening and uncertain, yet God needs to be my focal point. I am just a normal person who knows little about what I approach, and I need to remain in that mindset of the actual focus; the glory of God. And how much more with the knowledge and evidence of Jesus should I recognise this in my questioning?

It's only a dissertation I hear you say, yes it is! Yet I can't help but fear the getting lost in decay or hyped up in new prospects that if anyone did ever read it it could impact not only their attitude towards the Church but God himself. In fact everything we do is like that, our writing dissertations, going to work, our driving, our socialising. So somehow as we live our lives for God we need to be continuing to look for ways to reflect His Glory.