I seem to have found myself in a rather difficult business. What I'm selling, a lot of people just ain't buyin' and I spend an awful lot of time wondering why that is so. Perhaps it is just out of fashion. There are a million and one things to do on a Sunday not to mention the sweet temptation of a lie in with the Sunday papers so why on earth would people go to church?
Perhaps it is the
church itself, old fashioned, not for the young, stuck in the past as
if we are all still in the 1950s frolicking about the green and
pleasant land humming 'Jerusalem' to ourselves. Perhaps God really is
dead and we have all moved on to more rational views of the world.
That faith is just pie in the sky when you die and we are done with
that, thanks very much.
But then moments happen to me like this week as I walked home from work. Someone stopped me, said he had never been into the church but he needed a prayer. More than that, he needed God. Some guidance...or something. And this happens all the time these searching people who do a double take when they see me in a collar or cross the road to ask me a question.
And then I have my own story, the reason that I am wearing a collar in the first place to be sopped in the street. That overwhelming experience that took me
from agreeing with all of the above to being not just in church but
at the front leading the flippin' thing.
I routinely find myself
wondering what on earth I am doing. I haven't lost my
desire for a lie in. I haven't become immune to some of the truly
naff bits of church. But I have found something, under all that, that
has given me life. There isn't really any other way to put it than
that. It is like my spiritual heart has started beating, loud and
true, right in the centre of me and it is giving life to every part
of who I am.
And sometimes I wonder
if the naffness and the difficulty and the plain obscurity of a lot
of what the church does is part of the problem. The church has
thousands of years of tradition and history and my goodness that is
truly a wellspring of life if you dig down into it. It is riches
But it means that this
is a great hulking ship that takes a long time to turn. Our society
is moving on at the rate of knots and the church, quite frankly, is
not keeping up. What scares me, deep down, is that people might be
missing out on this joyful and life giving spiritual life that I know
Christianity has to offer not because they don't want it but simple
because the church is failing to explain itself in words that people
So that's why I want to
write a new series for this blog. To do a bit of decoding, a spot of
translation, to offer you something of what have been transformatory
for me in my own words. And then, well, you can take or leave it. It
is yours to reject or cherish. But if you are one of those people wondering about life, the universe and everything, well, I hope you will find something for the way.