Monday, 5 January 2009

Are Christians Better People?

So this is 2009 and the Cadburys Cream Eggs are in the shops already.

Did you make any new years resolutions (bad idea according to the bbc)? I did/didn't. I made some 'decisions about how to create a pattern of life in 2009' :-)

Why did I do that? Like any change there are push and pull factors:

Push - I don't like myself much sometimes when i get snared in sin and there are bits of my life that are in a mess because of it. I need more discipline if I am vaguely serious about being an apprentice of Jesus.

Pull - I am attracted to simplicity and making space for God, confession, celebration and service in everyday life as well as the big stuff. I want to be more Christlike (not just in personal piety but also because I want to play my own small unique part in continuing the Xmas story of peace coming) because that feels more like being alive than anything else.

Having said that i am also:

a) Cautious about being religious, trying to earn grace, doing it for the wrong reasons - I refer again to whose desire do i desire
b) Confident in a God who lives in me and can do more than imaginable & i work in 'development' so I see people grow/change all the time
c) Realistic - I might get new tools but can I actually change much, I mean really change? The stats and anecdotals aren't always as good as those 'I was a gangsta and now i am a minista' headlines - Naked Pastor comment1/comment2, Engage chat, Stats from USA1 Stats 2, Beliefnet article. (Though this piece by Matthew Parris (a famous (and humble) Atheist) is a welcome addition to the debate)
d) Concerned that this discussion just descends into an ugly 'who is really in/out and therefore counts' debate or that the whole thing is based around the wrong definition of 'better' or more likely the wrong starting question. me out here....

The next engage F2F will be a meal (free) at 105 Murray Rd 8pm Mon 12th Jan. It will be an open chat about the question 'Are Christians Better People?' Come and talk to the person next to you, to the whole table or just listen or just eat or any of the above. There will be some readings to chew on between courses, and oh yeah, bring your mobile so you can twitter your own reflections if you want to. Look forward to seeing you there or getting your comments below - HNY

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