In every generation, Christians have to make decisions about what kind of Christianity they are going to espouse...a limp apology for the real thing, indistinguishable in any meaningful way from the way the world operates, a brand of Christian faith that is bland and easy and cost nothing.

Or a brand of Christianity that answers the costly call to fidelity, in a world invidious to the Christian values, a Christianity that seeks first the Kingdom if God and will not be swayed by the threat, the cost, and the loneliness of walking the way of Christ, believing in his promises, accepting as true his declaration that if we are true to him, we can be sure, there will be no regrets.

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To try to separate ideas of personal commitment, from the demands of social concern, was the ugly hypocrisy of the church in an earlier age - when it was acceptable to engage in worship and preaching - while turning a blind eye, and a deaf ear, to the dark satanic mills, the ghastly housing and the exploitation of children, during the industrial revolution.

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A complex little world we live in - and no matter where we draw the line of our concerns - locally, nationally, globally - there are crucial life or death issues that challenge for our attention, and require a response.

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Just as boats were not made to bob cosily at anchor in the harbour, but were made for the open seas - so the Church was brought into being to brave the real world; to go in faith and take the risk of the new. Not to look pretty - not to take its own importance too seriously - but to throw the rule book away and get on with kissing the lepers.

 

 


 

 

 

 

Is this all there is to be? To get, to spend, to play -and to relate in a shallow and superficial way? Deep longings stir, and emerge on occasions, and we suspect that there can, and there should be more! If we are made for great things, little things will simply leave us with frustrations that go to the roots of our being. If we were made for wholeness and loving, then filling our life with hatred and anger and pettiness and cruelty, will leave us ill at ease with ourselves - only half alive.

 

 

 

In every generation, Christians have to make decisions about what kind of Christianity they are going to espouse...a limp apology for the real thing, indistinguishable in any meaningful way from the way the world operates, a brand of Christian faith that is bland and easy and cost nothing.

Or a brand of Christianity that answers the costly call to fidelity, in a world invidious to the Christian values, a Christianity that seeks first the Kingdom if God and will not be swayed by the threat, the cost, and the loneliness of walking the way of Christ, believing in his promises, accepting as true his declaration that if we are true to him, we can be sure, there will be no regrets.

**

 

 

 

 

 

Christianity is not in the business of putting Elastoplast on severed limbs.

It is interested in filling with real hope the moment of blackest despair.

 

 

For a man has never been the sum of his possessions - but a complex confusion of emotions, ego, needs, hopes, failures choices. Where we are truly rich or poor lies in the nature of our inner life.

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The dazzling lights, the masks and mythologies blind us  - in a darkened room with the light behind, materialism is a seductive beauty. Put on the lights and you see what a wizened old hag she really is.

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Inside us, where the big decisions are made, and the battles fought and won, in the will, this is where the trouble lies - and here is where Christ must be brought if there is to be salvation.

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You can change the government, re-organise society, make the systems fairer, and tinker with the machinery of state  till you're blue in the face - but until the heart is renewed, it's all futile. Until love makes its home through the Spirit of Jesus - it's all cosmetics. No real change has taken place.