Faith matters

Today I preached a sermon on what faith means to me, and how I understand it.  It's a question I am often asked, especially by friends (and other folks) who are curious, but slightly bemused.  

For me, faith It is not so much for me about believing in dogma, but rather about trusting in God, as far as I am able to perceive God.  Faith is holding fast to the conviction that God is love, and love will have the last word in life and death.   Faith is much more a verb than a noun - it is about doing, serving, loving, action.  As we reach out and serve our neighbours, I believe we meet God in them and in our relationships; especially as we reach out in compassion to those who need our help.

To some, I know, this may seem like wishful thinking, naivety, or foolishness.  And that's fine by me, others can draw their own conclusion.  But I am convinced that the way of this man Jesus is the truth that brings life to the world.  When I see his way of life, his willingness to die for others - I see God, and retain hope for the world.

The Myth of Scarcity

The myth of scarcity is one of the most common paradigms operating in today's politics.  Never has it been so cruelly exposed than in the events of the last few weeks, when Europe has been reached by thousands of suffering people from Syria, Libya and other troubled parts of the Middle East and North Africa.

This myth, often peddled by politicians on the right, asserts that EU nations cannot cope with the influx of refugees and migrants as we do not have enough resources to go around.  It is a wicked lie.  The truth is we are often unwilling to share, or make the sacrifices that would make room for these fellow human beings in our communities and in our countries.

Recently, I have been preaching on Sundays on Parables of Jesus which contain disturbing thoughts that challenge us about the way we see the world around us and how we ourselves approach life.  One such example is the Parable of the Ten Bridesmaids (Matt 25: 1-13) within which we find tucked away in the detail, this myth of scarcity.  For me, it sits uncomfortably with the tenor of the story itself, which is meant to be about preparing for the feast of the Kingdom.  

I'm pretty sure that Jesus didn't believe the myth of scarcity, and neither should we.  There is more than enough to go round.  The issue is our willingness to redistribute and share.  And lets face it - if faced with this utter human tragedy on our shores we cannot be moved to share with our fellow human beings, then we never will.

If you are interested in the passage and want to listen to the sermon you can find it here: