What's Love Got to do with it?

What if we've missed the point? What if Love Wins is enough? And why Rob Bell may just be right.

Right On our doorstep

Think that slavery is a thing of the past? Think that the UK is too civilised to be part of trafficking? Think again

5 reasons why being married to Brit is great (or 5 reasons to marry an American)

5 things you will never know until you marry an American

Masturbation Month

Giving up masturbation for a month. Why we need to save the kittens.

XXXchurch! Whaaa?

Why I love porn (ministries).

19 Dec 2010

Take Your Pick

You were made for more.

Not for less or for just enough, but for more.

You have a dream (don’t tell me you don’t) and you have a desire to live for

But that isn’t real.

It’s only real when you start to live it out.

It’s not about whether it’s successful or not. It’s about whether you start to
pursue it.

The same exists for porn.

You have a desire and a lust and it lives in your head.

The only difference between lust and your God given dreams is that when you
start to pursue lust, it goes nowhere. In fact it goes back.

When you start to pursue your God given dreams they start to come alive. They
start to breathe. Which mean you start to come alive and you start to breathe.

Today you have a choice. Today you can pursue something that leads to nothing
but heartache and inner turmoil or you can follow the life that comes from
something bigger and more incredible than you could imagine.

It’s that simple.

Take your pick.

12 Dec 2010

Why Frankie Boyle should be allowed to say what he likes.

So Frankie Boyle has done it again. He's gone and upset someone. This time it happens to be Jordan. On his new show Tramadol nights he made a joke that Jordan deemed too far, a joke about her and her family.

I watched the show on Wednesday night and even though I am a big Frankie Boyle fan, a lot of it was pretty close to the bone. I laughed at some jokes and I didn't laugh at others (even though I wanted to).

But it raises the question. How far is too far? How far is a comedian allowed to go in the name of comedy? Should there be some sort of comedy regulation, the comedy cops if you will? And this raises a wider question about free speech in general.

Jordan's reaction to the joke was hurt and to make a complaint to Ofcom and even get her lawyers involved. Frankie Boyle's was to stay silent. The publics' was a mix of disgust and a desire to see his show banned all the way to ...well to be honest I haven't seen many people (except Channel 4) come out publicly to support Frankie Boyle, most notably including himself.

But that isn't really the point.

When it comes to what people are allowed to say or not say I am firmly in the 'you are free to say whatever you like' camp. So Frankie Boyle is free to make jokes about whoever he likes, religious nuts are allowed to condemn and picket whoever they like and right wing groups are allowed to say whatever they like about other groups of people.

I've heard and seen a lot of people say that Frankie Boyle's show should be cancelled. But why?

If we take away free speach then where does that leave us? A lot of the time we focus on the negative stuff that would be wiped out. No free speech and we don't have to worry about groups like Westboro Baptist (I intentionally left out the Church part) because they are suddenly breaking the law and we can do something about it. People wouldn't be hurt because a comedian isn't allowed to say something mean about them.

But what does no free speech mean for the good stuff? It would be arrogant for Christians to assume that they could still go on evangelising for example. That could be offensive to Atheists and to people of other religions.

If free speech is stopped then we can't just assume that we can go on preaching about God's love or tell people about Jesus. We will inevitably offend somebody.

But a lot of the time as Christians we can't see this. We can't allow ourselves to seem weak so we fight it. We fight the right of others to free speech, others we see as 'wrong' and champion our own right to free speech because we see it as 'right'.

Sometimes there is clear wrong or right. Sometimes there are groups who are racist and prejudice (unfortunately some 'Christians'), there are people who just want to cause hurt and pain and who want to see a world where some people are seen as inferior (mmm, some Christians again?) and sometimes we just don't want to face up to people who are different than us (I think you can see where I am going with this).

But our job is not to take their right away to say what they like. Our job is to highlight injustice and to act differently. Our job is to not attack but love. Our job is to highlight the absurdity of some people and listen with love to others with whom we differ.

So Frankie Boyle should be free to make as many 'offensive' jokes as he like.

Because if he isn't then we better keep our mouths shut too.

5 Dec 2010

What Wayne's World Can Teach Us About Faith

One of my favourite movies, not just comedy but of any type of movie is Wayne's World. It's a Classic. But if I have to be honest it's probably the sequal, Wayne's World 2 that has maybe the most influential scene for me in a movie ever. 

Ok that could be pushing it considering all the incredible movies that have changed the way we think and have shaped cinema as we know it. I'm thinking more the Halloweens and the L'assassination Du Duc De Guise's of our time here (yeah look it up) than the Troll 2's (rule 1 of titling a movie- make sure there is at least an element of the title in the movie) and the Glitter's.

But still, there is one scene or more precisely, one line in Wayne's World 2 that has changed the way I think about my life and how I live it. Let me paint the picture.

Our hero Wayne and his best friend Garth are planning to put on a huge rock show. They need a venue, money and of course most importantly bands. But they don't know how to do it. They have their doubts and they don't think it is possible to get the bands. Then Wayne has a dream and in it 'Jim Morrison' along with a a weird naked indian, delivers the line that changed my life.

"If you book them, they will come"

It seems so simple. Book the bands and they will be there. No sweat.

It's so sure. There is a command and  a result. No beating about the bush. Do this and this will happen. You don't need to worry because it will all fall into place.

But when I remembered that line I realised how often I don't live like that. And I guess that is what faith is all about. We have a God who promises to take care of us and we don't need to worry about a thing. No really, not. a . thing. But we still doubt and we still wonder whether we are good enough, or fast enough or capable enough. We have a God who says, "If you act, I will come."

There is a moment in the Prodigal Son story which is often overlooked but it's so important. It's the point when the son makes the decision to return to his Father and his home. Not an easy thing to do considering you just ran away and wasted everything you were given, but still he did it. He returned home.

Because he needed to. He had nowhere else to go. He had no other friends to scrounge off. His bridges were burnt.

But probably also because he had faith. It probably wasn't much but it was there. Maybe he knew somewhere deep down that if he returned home his Father might be there will open arms. Maybe he knew he could return and all would be forgiven. 

He did and he was.

How often have we felt God asking us to do something but we get scared and turn away? How often do we know for a certain we are being called to something but we ignore it anyway? For me a lot. But sometimes faith is all about taking risks. But in fact they never are risks because God is in control. 

Having said that,

Faith is not easy. Sometimes we follow the 'rules' and God doesn't show up. Sometimes we take a step and we fall. Sometimes God feels distant. But he never is.

When the Prodigal Son left, God wasn't anywhere but by his side the whole time. When he was eating food even pig's wouldn't eat, God was by his side.

But sometimes I think we need to have more faith in a God who loves his people enough to split the sea so his people could escape persecution, or defeat armies that far outnumber theirs, or will heal your friend because you took a risk and lowered him through some poor guy's roof ( that's a nice story, but seriously that guy must have been livid).

Or even a God who loves us enough that when we don't have enough faith he doesn't give up on us.
So the next time you feel God calling you to something or you want to be creative and put your work out there or you have an idea for a ministry or a dream or someone you need to tell something to, remember

'if you book him, he will come'



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