Last night at church we had our second panel type set up for the year or the as we spread across the twittersphere #bhsaforum, the night’s questions we’re all based on the idea of ‘taboo’, things the church doesn’t talk about and was designed to give people the opportunity to ask questions they have always been afraid to ask at church. From where I sat in the sound room, playing my hand at social media junkie, and following in my brothers (yes plural, and yes both my younger brothers are much better at it than me) foot steps of multimedia genius, the night was a success, in that questions were asked and wise honest opinions were shared and I left feeling like I had a lot to think about and a few more answers, not all the answers, but a least a few more.
But I guess the night got me thinking of why people are afraid to ask questions like this, I guess the world has this idea that the church is supposed to have black and white answers on these often very grey issues, that we as a body of Christ should be able to offer decisions and guidance in these messy parts of life and I think that perhaps it isn’t that easy. For sure there are things that the church does have a black and white opinion on, but there is lots of situations where it all gets a bit confusing and the answers aren’t as clear or as direct, but, I think
To be honest, I don’t think we are supposed to have all the answers, because if were able to do everything without seeking and searching… why would we need God? And yes the bible is there as a guide, but I think that God chooses to leave somethings a little harder to decipher because he wants us to seek him, and ask what he would have us do. I think its ok to doubt and question, because out of the seeking of answers we grow. If we never challenge anything, we never need to grow.
I guess I also think that often there are clear answers, but they are often confronting and hard to teach and perhaps instead of embracing these we shy away from the complete separation that holiness calls us to. We get torn between the challenging life of purity and holiness that God calls us to live and the message of love, grace and mercy, which is also true, because sometimes it can be hard to work out how the two fit together. I think we also forget the church is made up of sinners, so that while we may know the answers, lots of us struggle to live it out day to day and so, we are afraid to give the hard answer because when we do because we have fallen short so many times before, we get labelled hypocritical.
The thing is though, when it all comes down to it, God’s standards are high and hard, and we all have fallen short, but because He is love, life, hope, forgiveness, mercy and grace and because Jesus has already paid the price, if we are seeking Him first and above all other things, it’s ok. Oh and I think when we offer God’s answers and speak the truth, rather than ‘the churches’ answers and actually say that they are His, then, while we still remain accountable for our own actions, if/when we fall short, God is bigger than that, and there is no one better to use us in our weakness than Him.
There are some moments in life that make you go… ‘oh man… I’m glad that wasn’t me’… and this is one of them… This is the scene Dave and I found in our street when we got back from the shops this morning…
It’s kind of hard to see but there is 4 fire trucks, 2 police cars, 1 unmarked police car and a MFB relief van… Full on. It turns out that while we were out this morning a house across the road from us burnt down. Luckily, no one was hurt, but they lost a lot of their things and probably more significantly a good portion of their home, pretty devastating…
So firstly I just need to apologise for not blogging for a few days, I haven’t been very well, but I am back, so never fear.
Anyway, I guess today’s blog is a bit of a sad one, yesterday I attended the funeral of a friend of mine’s mum, it was a really sad day, as we said goodbye to a mum, a sister, a wife, and a friend that was most definitely gone too soon. And while I don’t really want to dwell on the funeral all that much, I guess that’s where the blog has started, because it was because of the events of yesterday that I find myself sitting here writing.
Yesterday I was just reminded that we really do belong to a circle of life, and there is no denying it, and I was reminded this for two reasons. The first thing that reminded me of this was the fact that the last time I had seen this particular friend and two of my other really good mates from school was at my wedding, celebrating a different kind of life milestone, one that is much happier, yet here we all were together again less than 6 months later, celebrating a life that was now gone. It was just confronting I supposed to have these two significant events, so close together and with just the business of everyday life in between. The second thing that reminded me was another of my friends told me about a baby that had just been born, in fact, the baby was born at the same time as my other friend’s mum had died. It just seemed so difficult to comprehend that one had gone and another arrived at the same time, but in a weird way it also made sense, as I guess as that’s what makes it the circle, its not’s complete until it restarts, I guess it just seems unfair that one must go so soon sometimes.
Today also made me realise how important time is, and that it really shouldn’t be taken for granted. Sometimes I think I waste a lot of time, or think I will put things off, send that card later, make that call next week, but I guess it’s a risky game to play because we don’t always get next week, or tomorrow, and things need to be done straight away or they won’t be done at all. I think that it was a good reminder to hold and cherish those I love, and to not to take the time, the laughs, the love for granted, but to savour it, always savour it.