Imaginary Lines daydreaming for beginners

Sparrows


We have Walked with Jesus. We have sought to sense something of his presence with us as he agonised in his choices. Now we are going to stand at the cross.holy week Read More…

Breaking Bread

So now we have an opportunity to reflect on roles and status in the Church. This morning on Twitter a bishop mourned the fact that people will be denied the Eucharist. Read More…

Life in Exile

Things have changed, for sure. There are no longer certainties, plans are on hold or ditched, many of us find ourselves exiled to our homes (sometimes from our loved ones).
Although strange to us, here and now, this is nothing new. All that has changed is the backdrop to the common conditions of many through the ages. Read More…

speaking of cupboards

…does God have a Cupboard under the stairs?
Read more …

Christmiss

Many folk willingly come to a church but once a year. Not Easter: far too gory and weird. No, they come at Christmas (chiefly to the Carol Service). We all come with numerous, complex, and (often) conflicting expectations.

Despite these various expectations there is, I think, an underlying wish that wonder and mystery will be encountered; senses engaged; perhaps, just perhaps, some connection glimpsed. These folks almost universally stay away after the Christmas encounter.

Why?

Well, what do I know? No idea really: but I do have a sense of something wrong. We Christians tell our story, but we tell it badly. To a Jew, hearing it again, the story of Covenant Redemption is presented in a continuum of family. The stories are familiar and embedded in the life of the community, life around the table: nothing jarring, nothing unexpected. Shalom made pregnant and present.

Yet we Christians assume this Story is already known and understood by all who enter our doors. This is nonsense. Not only that but we offer a version plagued with Augustinian rhetoric designed to quench the spirit and suggest the big bad god will come and get you. For goodness sake, why is the Western Church still peddling Original Sin?

I actually wonder if we really do know how to tell it. Our policy is to plough on as we think we know it, or as we think it ought to be known. Shout loud and hope ears will hear. But I for one don't think it works — ever.

So, what? Let's keep the carols and the wonder (maybe getting the gender issues normalised), let's keep the candlelight and sparkly tree. Let's even have some singable new carols.

But, let's find ways of telling God's wonderful, graceful Story as a one that is relevant to those who come expectantly. I should rather tell The Story in terms of Journey from/to. Exodus from Eden; from Egypt; from Exile; from expiration; towards emancipation.

Who knows, some might begin a journey.