An inclusive bike ride

June continues to be mad, however one project we now have underway is the FYT virtual Cycle ride who I work for. FYT have a strong history of working with young people on the edge, and working to include them in the church and kingdom. As such we wanted to do an event that everyone could be involved in, regardless of age or ability. So we have come up with a wacky concept that is all inclusive and are looking for people to join in this slightly twisted idea of the old favourite – a sponsored bike ride. Go here Once Bitten dvd for more details. If you want to sponsor me, or become a virtual cyclist please let me know via the blog. I would love to set a target of getting 50 virtual cyclists via the blog. FYT never really push themselves PR wise, for example few people would know that in the last year we have had contact with over 7000 people doing direct youth work, and 2000 youth work management. With the size of our team, to say we were punching above our weight would be an understatement. So please get behind this thing, and sign up and start linking. Thanks

I’m sick of all strategies!

Now I’m really sick of strategies we are offered in different ways in church. I just want to live a life faithful to Christ.
I hope that Emergent thinking not goes in that direction. But I understand we need to think somethings through and get some organisation but I just want to live together with people who wanna explore the depths of life. And from my point of view I’m convinced we get it from Jesus Christ. Of course have other peoples experience something to teach us.
Emergent as I see it is not a new strategy but a new way of being, living and understand church. It is not a strategy which will guarantee success (another word which make me sick) – but a way to be true to Christ. One of my favorite theologians didn’t understood the thing with “saving souls” – for him the most important thing was to invite people to discipleship – which of course includes social justice, setting people free, witness, proclamation in order to get human beings in relationship with the lord.
That’s were I am right now!!!
So thank you Richard for charing your thoughts – I appreciate them.

Hearing from my Inward self

Apologies for the sporadic blogging, June is a mad month for work. It seems that everyone is trying to cram stuff in before the summer. I hate it when I get too busy especially if it means being late.

Yesterday I met an interesting guy from New Zealand a church leader looking at emerging church and stuff as part of a sabbatical. I am finding more and more leaders open to new stuff which is SO encouraging. Less people shouting heretic and more people open change has to be a good thing in my mind. On another matter, one reason for my busyness is that I am sorting a fund raising event for FYT- The Virtual Cycle Ride. I don’t want to spoil the surprise but it will something that everyone can join in, whether your 8 or 80.

FYT have some great projects in the offing, which is great but I must remind myself of the need for balance. So for all you other activists out there, with a mad June or July approaching, here is a word of warning from Henry Thoreau.

“when our life ceases to be inward and private, conversation degenerates into mere gossip. We rarely meet a man who can tell us any news which he has not read in a newspaper or been told by a neighbour; and for the most part the only difference between us and our fellow is that he has seen the newspaper or been out to tea and we have not. In proportion as our inward life fails we go more constantly and desperately to the post office. You may depend on it that the poor fellow who walks away with the greatest number of letters proud of his extensive correspondence has not heard from himself in a long while.”

The Foot Fist Way psp

Mission and Emerging church

I have a growing unease about much of the emerging scene. It is one of those nagging but growing feelings. I like the co-operation and much of the generosity both in terms of theology and ideas but the growing shape and organisation seems to be turning quite product focused. I think the initial questions of what is church and mission in contemporary culture has been replaced with how do we worship in ways that reflect our culture, perhaps with the assumption that this will answer the mission question. In an earlier post I likened the emerging church to a bonsai tree that was top heavy. I wonder if the way the current conversations around are adding to this. There was a good post on simple church a while ago that I agree not to organise check out the comment. The unease is growing and I think we may miss the mission along the way.

Evidence and Proof II

Regarding “Evidence and Proof”:

I always simply thought that, if there was ‘proof’ of God, then it would no longer be a choice of whether to follow Him or not – instead we would be compelled to follow Him, which isn’t much use in a free will world.

It’s a bit like 1+1=2. Am I ever going to believe that is wrong? No. Will I act on the fact that 1+1=2? Yes, I do so every time I pay for something with cash, every time I wait a minute for someone. So surely if God was proven then I would have to believe and I would have to act on it. Just like believing in 1+1=2 isn’t my free choice, believing in God would not be free choice but would be mandatory.

I always figured free choice is important in our relationships. The thing about people in general is that you can believe that they exist, but you don’t have to believe what they say. If God was proven then you would have to believe what he ‘said’ – because it is proven that he is God (God being the all powerful, etc. – that’s the point of the term ‘God’). If it wasn’t proven that you had to believe what he said then it wouldn’t be proven that he was God.

So I guess that’s why I think God is being perfectly reasonable in not proving his existence to us, at least scientifically! Faith, though, is an entirely different proof type of thing…

Hopeful with Aslan

I love the summer. I know feeling are very subjective, and quite in contrast to Marks last post on science. Summer makes me feel good. Summer reminds me of great residentials with young people, detached work when it is too hot to play football so you sit in the sun and talk, days out with young people who have never seen the sea, and chilling out with them as friends.

I love the evocative feeling that CS Lewis writes about Aslans recovery and his joy at rising again, but what is even better is how Aslan includes the children in the joy and journey ahead.

‘Oh, children,’ said the Lion, ‘ I feel my strength coming back to me. Oh, children, catch me if you can!’ He stood for a second, his eyes very bright his limbs quivering, lashing himself with his tail. Then he mad a leap high over their heads and landed on the other side of the Table. Laughing, though she didn’t know why, Lucy scrambled over it to reach him. Aslan leaped again. A mad chase began. Round and round the hill-top he led them, now hopelessly out of their reach, now letting them almost catch his tail, now diving between them, now tossing them in the air with his huge and beautifully velveted paws an d catching them again, and now stopping unexpectedly so that all three of them rolled over together in a happy laughing heap of fur and arms and legs. It was such a romp as no one has ever had except in Narnia; and whether it was more like playing with a thunderstorm or playing with a kitten Lucy could never make up her mind. And the funny thing was that when all three finally lay together panting in the sun the girls no longer felt in the least tired or hungry or thirsty.

‘And now,’ said Aslan presently, ‘to business. I feel I am going to roar. You had better put your fingers in your ears.’

And they did. And Aslan stood up and when he opened his mouth to roar his face became so terrible that they did no dare to look at it. And they saw all the trees in front of him bend before the blast of his roaring as grass bends in a meadow before the wind. Then he said,

‘We have a long journey to go. You must ride on me.’

What Doesn’t Kill You dvdrip

Small is Beautiful two

I have used this track several times around smallness, it fits both youth work and church training stuff I often do. It comes from a track by Belljar on the Secret Volcanoes album.

Small is beautiful,
I’ve heard it said,
When things get too big,
You can’t keep them in your head.

You can take your big ideas,
And your big hat and your big shoes too,
Coz’ small is beautiful and I don’t need you,
Spoiling the view,

I’d rather know two or three,
Than a thousand smiling nameless faces,
So won’t you let me be,
Coz I won’t be thinking of changing places.

Small is beautiful,
Keep it that way,
You let it get too big you can’t give it away,
You can take your techniques and your ten top tips for success,
Coz small is beautiful and I’m convinced more is less.

I’d rather know two or three
Than a thousand smiling namesless faces,
So won’t you let me be,
Coz I won’t be thinking of changing places,

Small is beautiful,
Small is beautiful,
Small is beautiful,
Small is beautiful.