Wednesday, May 16, 2007


I think that sometimes I do put these posts up to get a response, as someone who has been a christian most of my life, apart from a little blip in the middle, I am constantly challenged by the life we live here on this island.

Personally I think we need challenging because all our pat little christian phrases and well worded responses don't always cut it. I know all the biblical responses, but on the street you have to think on your feet, remain in tune with the Spirit and do what you feel is best. All the time trusting that God is with you and he'll get you out of any theological muddle you may get in.

I want to live a responsive life not a programmed life, that means that so often my answers are responsive not pre-programmed. I have been taught all the pre-programmed responses, I can give my "testimoney" in 3 minutes. I am not knocking it just saying that life is not like that. There is something that is organic about relationships, organic about being with people, conversations grow and develop they don't always end up going in the direction the books tell you they will! But thats the adventure.

Helen Keller once said "life is either a daring adventure or nothing" I like that. We over plan, over think. Of course I am not saying we don't train or learn, just that the training and learning has almost to sit behind the relational aspect of how we live.

So when I talk about calling out the good, I know what I mean. God created the planet and all that live in and saw that "it was good" God knew us before we were in our mothers wombs, he smiled when we where created. His longing is that we reach our full potential, in each one of us there is good, because God created us. We need to view people as God would and I firmly believe that what God sees is good, he has a longing for that good to be called out of people. In fact his longing was that strong that he sent his son in order that this could happen. When Jesus met with people he called out the good in them, he got a response, he made people uncomfortable with what they were and caused them to yearn for what they could be be. His presence often called out the good in people.

Let me develop this more Tomorrow or when I get a minute to quote scriptures and look theologically sound.


Brian in NC said...

Brian I hear ya and I agree, we have to be sensitive to the leading of the Holy scripture that comes to mind that speaks to what you are talking about here is Luke 19:1-9 where Jesus calls the crooked tax collector Zacchaeus out of the tree and told him that he wanted to eat at his house that day....Jesus saw the good in him and also more importantly that he was truly seeking after the things of God, as witnessed by his climbing the tree to see Jesus...anyway keep on being the light there man!!

Anonymous said...

"Brian in nc" left out the next verse (v.10), where Jesus says: "For the Son of Man came to seek and to save what was lost."

Preace the Gospel! Jesus did.
All have the capacity to be "good" but none can enter the presence of God without the blood of Jesus. Let's not short change those we come across, let them get in on the action - Jesus changes us from the inside out! He has changed our lives and will change theirs. Their level of "goodness" is irrelevant - he sent his Son to hang on tree not because we deserve it, but rather because we don't. As I said on my own blog: "God is good so we don't have to be!!" Let's get that message over because faith comes by hearing....

My position is clear: even the worst and depraved in society can be changed / saved / redeemed, whatever term you want to use. I can't understand why you Christian blogwatchers are upset by that! It is the good news of the Kingdom!

Mark (from Guernsey) said...

Sorry William, I don't see any good (I am not sure you even understand the meaning of that word) news in your "evangelically" correct rent-a-quote message. I don't see any love or grace in your writing off of your fellow countrymen as drunkards & rebels "fuelled by godless religion"! I actually see the same pharisaic tendency of Matt 23 v 15, that I grew up with in my teenage years. I am in my 40's and have sadly seen most of my Christian friends fall away from this "us" and "them" evangelical religion.

The Cross is not some weapon of conquest for "us" to change the "lost" to be the same as "us". It is the supreme expression of God's love for all creation: grace in action. An expression of his love even for those who spit into his face by denying the God-given goodness of their fellow humans. A grace that we are to live in everyday, not a one-off expression to get us "into" the kingdom.

Please, please spare us any more of your (correctly worded) word-based gospel, let's get out there loving people where they are - and leaving the rest to God. What does it matter to us if God wants to let people into to his kingdom who have not ticked the beliefs boxes on our forms or done the appropriate courses. I reckon some of us are going to have a shock when we find out who's "in" or "out" at the final reckoning.

Sorry mate, but I have been "in the church" all my life and have seen more "sin" and so little true goodness in the church (evangelical wing). These guys and what they are doing in Ibiza is precious. I know that you are seemingly trying to "encourage" them towards the "correct" approach, but to my mind it comes across as "kicking them in the teeth" from the position of your "superior wisdom".

Anonymous said...

Dear Mark,
rather than responding to your "fighting" comments here (it would be unfair to Brian to do so), I have reposted them over at my own blog. Please drop by and see what I have to say in response.

Tanya Heasley said...

That post was 'good' Brian ;)

michael said...

hi Brian, I've been a regular reader of your blog for a while but never posted a comment until now!

i think this debate is nicely summed up by a quote from Shane Claiborne's book, the Irresistable revolution:

"The Gospel is good news for the sick people and is disturbing for those who think they've got it all together. Some of us have been told our whole lives that we are wretched, but the Gospel reminds us we are beautiful. Others of us have been told our whole lives that we are beautiful, but the Gospel also reminds us that we are wretched. The church is a place where we can stand up and say we are wretched, and everyone will nod and agree and remind us that we are also beautiful."

J-Mac said...

William's at it again!

I do have some respect for what he says as he at least puts his name beside his arguments.

I think it's good to hear a perspective from someone at the other extreme than most of the people who would visit Brian's blog. Not sure if it's a 'left' and 'right' thing, but it does keep us centred to hear different points of view.

I hope William is also open to accepting those views/interpretations here that differ from his.

Mark (from Guernsey) said...

Sorry for my intemperate comments last night: was trying to watch football, download music & blog at the same time - and blokes aren't good at multi-tasking (so the girls in my team at work tell me!).

Oops, I've just used that word again, maybe we need to find a new word for goodness. We are all made in God's image to be creative, beautiful people. The fall disfigures this but doesn't obliterate it. We remain beautiful people who can never be good enough. But Jesus does the rest, Hallelujah!