Sunday, March 25, 2007

Crumbs from your table

Just moved past 10,000 visitors! To mark the occasion I have a simple question (following on from what I've been reading about redistribution and from a great comment by Ralf on my last post).

Does God want Christians to be rich?/Is God happy when Christians are rich?

Monday, March 19, 2007


I guess that's why God created highlighters, so we can highlight the parts of the bible we like and ignore the rest.

Returned from a great weekend at NUA. I have come home with a deep sense of dissatisfaction and anticipation.

Kind of started when I finished one of the best books I have ever read by Fergal Keane, 'All of These People'. An amazing journey into the human psyche by an Irish war reporter (his reflections of Africa will reduce any grown man to tears)

I'm currently reading Shane Claibornes 'Irresistible Revolution' (where the quote above came from). It's quite simple stuff but it scares the crap out of you. Like the story about the rich young ruler. We 'contextualise' this by explaining that Jesus is talking about love of money or making idols of our things. But what if he actually means it when he says 'sell all you have and give it to the poor'???
Another quote:
' I have come to see that the great tragedy in the church is not that Christians do not care about the poor but that Christians do not know the poor.'
In my head I'm thinking we need to find a balance here, just take some parts of what he's saying and relate it to real life. BUT THAT'S EXACTLY THE POINT!. Either we do it or we don't. I don't really have many answers here and would appreciate comments (leave your name!).

What I have taken from NUA is that we are not called to be part of our culture, or to be a Christian sub-culture. We are called to be counter-culture. Jesus was. This has to affect our everyday choices in relation to our consumer driven world.

I'm not really sure what it means yet but it feels like it's getting dangerous.
Love and Peace

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

Amazing Grace

Freedom day is coming up on Sunday 25th.

I was reading about it when I collided with one of my favourite quotes. The collision takes place in the person of John Newton. Newton, famous for penning 'Amazing Grace', seems something of a dichotomous character. Perhaps a Bono of the 18th century!

He was a slaveship master making his fortune off the coast of Sierra Leone. After a storm one night he converted to Christianity and gave up swearing, drinking and gambling but continued to trade slaves. Let's not be too hard on him. It was very normal in his day to support the slave trade. There's plenty of Christians about now who don't drink or curse but aren't too concerned about the poor either!

Anyway later in his life he realised his folly and fell into deep regret. He joined William Wilberforce in the abolitionist movement. Wilberforce was his protege. When he was going to leave parliament to become a missionary Newton told him that he should, "serve God where he was". Wilberforce heeded his advice and spent the next five decades successfully working for the abolition of slavery.

Newton said this:
I am not what I ought to be.
I am not what I want to be.
I am not what I hope to be.
But still, I am not what I used to be.
And by the grace of God,
I am what I am.
Love it!

Thursday, March 01, 2007

To vote or not to vote..... the question on people's lips here.
I don't think you have a right to comment on issues in your country if you don't utilise your vote but at the same time it's damn hard to work out which of these muppets to vote for.

-I lived in a 'prod' bubble until I went to Uni but was always aware of the Celtic blood in my veins.
-I'd quite like a united Ireland but don't want former terrorists in government.
-I'd like more money for education.
-And a more of a focus on the developing world in norn irish politics.
-I would settle for a party who encourage people to love their neighbours... or at least coexist with them.

So who gets the vote? You decide...but let Wiggy help here.