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Wales – Holy Land?

22 Sep

As Christians, we can imagine the great places in the Bible, the places that Jesus went to. we can even visit them today, and I’m sure sailing on the Sea of Galilee, walking the streets of Jerusalem, and viewing the empty tomb stirs something deep within us as we see first hand many of the places that we are told about, and we would perhaps consider Israel, our very own, ‘holy land’.

But something has been bothering me. You see for all the great experiences you would have, imagining scripture unfolding history before you, I keep wondering if there is somewhere else. Somewhere that is maybe even more holy… Could it be that, perhaps, here in the UK, God is slowly creating a slice of ‘heaven on earth’? Continue reading

Elders…. or Star Wars characters?

20 Jul

They perform a thankless job. They are every bit as important to the vision and direction of the church but don’t get the spotlight like the minister does. No I’m not talking about the legendary ‘church committee’ (said as if it were a superhero). The elders!

I’ve always wondered what an elders meeting is like, when no-ones around, and their true beings come out. I imagine they all wear long purple robes, and float into the meeting like celestial beings. Not a word is mentioned because they are operating on a slightly different spiritual frequency, they of course have telepathy. Prayer times would be a lot of low ‘mmms’ and hymnal ‘aahhhs’.

But with the rather distorted mindset I have, it seems that churches are being led by a group of guys that resemble star wars characters:

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All hail the Church Members Meeting

20 Jul

How great is it to be part of the local church? I mean really, a ready made family with all kinds of people in all walks of life. It’s no wonder Gods word encourages believers to meet together in one place.

Ah the church, how sweet it to spend time in your presence, together as one. Of course there are times when you would rather be somewhere else. Times when you feel like just throwing your hands in the air and giving up.. “why do I bother?” suddenly crosses your mind. Nothing creates that knee jerk reaction than the infamous “church members meeting” (said in a big booming voice with thunder and lightning accompanying it).

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Know me by my Bible

14 Jul

I stride into through the church car park, head raised high. My trusty Bible tucked under my arm as if to stop the world and its germs from infecting it.

I pass through the doors, shake hands with the welcome team with vigour, ensuring they catch a glimpse of my glorious book of truth. Yes, you saw it. Your eyes fixed in a hypnotic trance as if my Bible had a supernatural glow about it. Know me by my Bible!
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The Geoff Gobbett Principle

13 Jul

“Small world”, we exclaim when somebody is somehow linked to our life experience, as if we didn’t think the bubble that surrounds us wouldn’t ever be penetrated. The theory you may be aware, is called six degrees of separation. The theory goes, that anyone on the planet can be connected to any other person on the planet through a chain of acquaintances that has no more than five intermediaries.

The modern day equivalent is known as the Christian Slater to Kevin Bacon game: The idea is the same except theoretically two actors can be linked together by a number of films.

If you’re a Christian, you’ll be all too aware that the Christian/Church world is even smaller, which is why on most sunday mornings, after the service, over a cup of tea and a digestive you’ll hear plenty of “oohhh really”, or maybe a “noo, I used to go to the church’s youth group”, throw in to the mix an occassional “is he preaching at (insert church name) now?”

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The Camp

10 Jul

You’d think church youth groups were a safe zone, no gossip, no cliques and all those petty annoying things that made school so harsh. But alas, that thinking would be wrong – and of course the mix of these things are amplified in one of the most nerve-racking times in any youth group members life – the camp experience!

Now firstly, I loved going on camp – I was saved wonderfully on camp (ah the wonderful days of teen camp in sevenoaks). But usually the camp goes down hill as soon as you leave the church and continues to plummet until the leaders are tearing their hair out, ready to go home for a rest. The camp can be broken down into several key areas:
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The church side hug

6 Jul

 

The side hug

Yes, God wants us to be compassionate and kind and tender with each other. Not only that, but he wants us to love our enemies and serve our neighbors. As long as there is no body on body action.

I’m talking of course about a “full frontal hug,” one of those sinful abominations where you just wrap your arms around a friend and embrace them.

That’s why Christians the world over have pioneered the “side hug.” Continue reading