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?