Tuesday, 29 June 2010

Slowing down

That title might be a bit misleading. Actually things are still fairly busy as it is now 1 month and 1 day before Lis and I get marriaged!

But other things are slowing down, notably blogging. Although I'm not going to totally quit, expect posts to come sparsely for the next 2 months or so.

Watch this space for my thoughts about "Wild at Heart" and more Ultimate Twister Destiny Dueling.

In the meantime, let this remind you that you should be cautious about how you blog.

Does anyone remember that old Christian kids' tune:

"Oh be careful little fingers what you type
Oh be careful little fingers what you type
For there's a billion other people
Who could possibly read and then
Misinterpret what you've said
Or you might just say something
Offensive because you had bad
Day but it'll come back to bite
You on the bum
Oh be careful little fingers what you type"

Tuesday, 22 June 2010

On being let down

If you follow a football team, you'll be aware that it's impossible to go a season without being let down. If you're an England fan you'll be very aware.

Do we realise just how incredible it is that to follow Jesus is to be a fan of someone undefeatable?

I am a glory hunter - I support Jesus. He always wins.

Heaven is going to be like a massive post-match party, when all the fans come together to celebrate Christ's crushing victory over the opposition. I will be there, jumping around in the crowd and shouting like a crazy person.

Wednesday, 16 June 2010

Battling for the Christian book shop

In Shrewsbury we have a Christian book shop called Illuminate. It doesn't make any money, but it's a fantastic resource. Especially when there happens to be a cafe on the first floor, and offices of two independent Christian charities on the second.

Anyway, it's come to the point where something will have to done to stop the shop from closing down. I put this film together, which outlines the masterplan...

Help keep the light shining from Illuminate Trust on Vimeo.

Friday, 11 June 2010

Best Biblical names

One of the things that seems to deter people from reading the Bible are those genealogies of hard-to-pronounce names that pop up every so often. Whilst I can't say they are my favourite part of scripture, I do enjoy searching through them for names that are slightly odd. It's a similar hobby to poring over maps looking for funny place names. Everyone does that, right?

Anyway, here are some of my favourite Bible names:

- Maher-Shalal-Hash-Baz (Is 8:3)

- Brothers Uz and Buz (Gen 22:21)

- Joshbekashah (1 Chron 25:4)

- Brothers Muppim, Huppim and Ard (Gen 46:21)

- Everyone loves Shadrach, Meshach and Abednego (Dan 2:49)

- Zadok (2 Sam 15:24)

- Lot (Gen 12:4)

- Nimrod (Gen 10:8)

Can you think of any more?

Thursday, 10 June 2010

Lego me

Here's what I would look like if I was a lego person (dream come true).

You can do the same to yourself here.

Tuesday, 8 June 2010

Exciting realities

At the moment I'm watching series 7 of the stunning, gripping programme that is 24. For the majority of each episode I am biting my proverbial nails (I don't actually bite my nails). There are so many cliff-hangers it's a surprise there's enough space on the cliff to hang them all. In a word, 24 is thrilling.

I wonder though, how I can be so thrilled by something that isn't real, and not get quite as excited about reality, even when it is very exciting.

History, for instance, bored me at school, and yet I happily read Tolkien's 'The Silmarillion' - a not-so-brief account of the history of his fictional Middle Earth.

Why do people spend hours reading magazines about the lives of celebrities they've never met, and then ignore their actual friends?

I think it's all to do with the way things are presented. Sensational! Colour! Impact! And less to do with the actual content.

There is so much hype about Christmas (most of it superficial) that I could hardly get to sleep on Christmas eve. But the solid, dependable truth of a new heaven and new earth, where there will be no evil at all is just as much a reality. How many sleepless nights have I had because of the anticipation of glory? Well, none.

The media treats Christian beliefs as vague, powerless and irrelevant. Lets adamantly reject that idea. God is not just a real idea, He is a real person. Amazingly, reality for Christians is actually better than anything ever imagined. It's true, but do you believe it?

Friday, 4 June 2010

Soul Purpose 2010

After last year's exciting event, I was looking forward to SP10 with great enthusiasm.

This is the sixth year of Soul Purpose - a town-wide multi-church initiative reaching out to communities in north Shrewsbury over three days.

It went so fast, yet there was a heck of a lot crammed in. So, I think I'll just do highlights again (in no particular order):

1 - Having an awesome team of young people. I was in charge of a brilliant crew of young guys and girls, who did a fantastic job of gardening, painting, litter picking, chair stacking and eating.

2 - Playing connect-4 with children. By children I mean aged 3 - 6. I won every time :)

3 - Hearing an amazing story about God's power and love at work in a bloke called Mike. How he was changed from a hard, violent, bitter soldier into a man totally at peace, and how God helped him battle with leukemia.

4 - Playing loud Christian music with Try The Polish (the best Christian covers 3-piece band this side of Telford). It might have been too loud.

5 - Inventing a brand new dance called "the strimmer". Ask me for a demonstration.

6 - Although someone did remind me about Team Tumnus, I mostly managed to escape being likened to said faun. This year we were Team Trespass; so called because when we arrived to paint a junior school the gates were locked, so we climbed over the fence. They did know we were coming.

7 - Getting to know people from the area, like Randall, who advised me not to eat too much pork. Very wise.

8 - Having some fantastic times of worship with people from 14 different churches. On Monday we were led excellently by a band from Nexus, which is like worship college.

I'm now about to go on another exciting weekend venture - to a regional church camp in Wales. It should be a more relaxing time, because I'm not as involved. Normally I would be doing worship, but this year we have Phatfish leading worship for us, so that'll be ace.

If anyone else wants a game of connect-4 let me know.