Monday, 11 November 2013

A great gift

Last week I shared a posting on my facebook page which reflected my views on Halloween being celebrated by dressing up children to look like things from horror films. The result was a number of positive and negative comments on the article and some interesting discussions.

Always tricky when faith seems to indicate that we can't simple go with the flow. However it does call us to mind that while God's people are called to be a prophetic voice, often in the wilderness of the society in which we live, the way we live speaks out more about us than critical, judgemental words about the way those who don't share our beliefs, live theirs.

Simply nay saying others while we don't behave any differently is never going to impress anyone. However the gift we have is to be different and to show how amazing a community God's church is when it lives God's way.

God gave us a great gift, an amazing gift, in Jesus. A chance to be all that God wants us to be, free from the pulls and draws of so many things that damage our lives and force us to be less than God's best for us.

I reflected a little more as I prepared for remembrance Sunday as we were going to be looking at Micah 4:1-5, God's word through the prophet had been telling the people that God had had enough of their wrong doing and was going to bring war. But the hope, the gift embedded into this was a promise that peace would come and it would bring an incredible restoration. Peace is another great gift that God promises. In that peace, strong nations will resolve their differences by coming to God, people will be secure and safe - God's desire will be our desire.

Church Community
Some one recently said to me, having come to church a few times, that they had had no idea that church did anything outside of Sunday services. They commented that they had been deeply affected by the non judgemental welcome they received and were amazed at the way the community of the church works all of the time, supporting each other, caring about and for each other and being there for them as well.

By this will all people know that you are my disciples, Jesus said. Our great gift to others, is not to put them down or exclude them for not understanding our faith or our desire to live differently, no, its the fact that by living differently we can in fact be an attractive people, living at peace, living in love, living in community for each other. A community which draws others and welcomes them and allows God to transform their lives as he is ours.