Our world has been described as VUCA. Volatile Uncertain – we don’t know what tomorrow will bring Complex A = Anxious or Angry Have we ever known a more divided time? When we are trying to make the divisions even greater. ‘Age of anxiety’ may be suppressing the anger? Pressure and stress Coldplay ‘Everyday life’ Chris Martin wants to express more anger’ https://www.thetimes.co.uk/article/chris-martin-coldplay-interview-singer-everyday-life-new-album-god-is-the-answer-children-apple-moses-hxzp8h625 St Augustine “Hope has two beautiful daughters; their names are Anger and Courage. Anger at the way things are, and Courage to see that they do not remain as they are.” People are facing the realities. The story we live is lived according to the back story of this uncertainty which is the prevailing narrative of the world. Look at Coca Cola ads over the years. They capture the zeitgeist of where we are. We are living in the post-realworld. Reality is becoming blurred. VR, AR. What is the real world? ‘Taste the feeling’ is the latest ad. They are merging categories. We are called to describe reality in the light of God (David Ford). So what will an […]
David Ford is Regus Professor of Theology at Cambridge and I was just privileged to hear him speak on ‘The Gospel of John – Abundant meaning, Abundant love.’ Here are my unedited notes. John’s is a gospel of abundance. He’s studied it for 19 years and still feels he has had a cup from a huge barrel. John 3:16 sums up the gospel – it’s all about love! It’s the latest to be written, and we think John knew the synoptics. So we can make connections with them. He may have written it in Ephesus, and even knew the Pauline tradition so here you have the gospel narrative and the theology so he was known as ‘ho theologos’in the Eastern church. Hans Urs von Balthasar “Most saint’s lives can be summed up as the exegesis of one scripture.” John wants you to think in terms of abundance. How many fish? How much wine? How much glory! He wants us to think differently about big concepts, about time, and about love. 1 John is the first commentary on John – a Johannine community […]
We must not just tell people to give, we must help them to live generously.
Be doers of the word, and not hearers only. I’ve just been looking today at this year’s LAUNCH church multiplication catalyst event as we GO VIRAL – planning and preparing for what I’m asking the Lord to make the best one yet. First the bad news Where I live, the word crisis has featured on the front page of just about every newspaper somewhere for the last few weeks. Few would argue with the contention that the world right now is suffering from a crisis of leadership and we see the evidence all around us. Fear rises. Everyone is effected. I don’t know whether or not the oft quoted suggestion is true that a Chinese word for crisis is also the word for opportunity, but I certainly believe it in practice. And I do know that the kingdom of God is never in crisis! That’s why now is no time for the church to retreat – thinking ‘one day we’ll fly away’. This is our opportunity to stand out by getting stuck in – with a renewed conviction that the gospel […]
I wouldn’t usually review a book half way through but I was given an advance copy and it sat on my ‘to read’ pile until a couple of days ago – then it grabbed hold of me. I’m definitely going to get lots of copies available for LAUNCH this year as this book is so needed. Amidst all the books on church techniques, strategies and goals (which I love) comes one which asks so many challenging questions and provides great insight into what the heck it is we are actually even doing. And why ‘it’ isn’t doing what it’s supposed to. Reframation – what’s that? Well Alan likes to make up new words when old ones don’t fit, or add a couple together to make a new one – which I think is cokay. The basic idea of the book that is everyone sees through a frame, and we need to reframe our understandings of God, people and the church – which needs to keep on reforming rather than say ‘Oh yeah we did that 500 years ago.’ (See what they […]