Showing posts from July, 2017

ORIGAMI - Why Church Should Be a Place Of Participation

In an experiment conducted in 2011, participants created Origami in a bid to assess the validity of “The IKEA Effect” – that people place a greater value on things that they have created , or expended effort on, than on things that were pre-built, or build by someone else, even if the pre-made items were of a higher quality. The participants created either an origami crane or frog, and were then asked how much they would pay for it. A group of experts also created origami. A group of non-participants were asked how much they would pay for the non-expert and expert origami. The participants assessed their own work at around 23 cents , whilst the non-participants assessed the same origami at around 5 cents . Finally the non-participants assessed the experts origami at around 27 cents . From this we can see that the participants assessed their own work (basically scrunched up paper) as being almost the same value as the origami that the experts made,

TRAGEDY - Why Mark's Gospel Gives Me Hope for the Future

A little while ago I listened to a podcast about Friedrich Nietzsche’s book " The Birth of Tragedy " . The speaker was discussing Nietzsche’s love of   Greek Tragedy . A form of play from over 2000 years ago that, in Nietzsche’s eyes, pulled back the veil of reality to give the viewer a glimpse of the chaos that lay behind. Greek Tragedy revealed the ultimate reality that life is meaningless , and that we are but froth tossed about on a cosmic ocean . Nietzche argued that art (in this case in the form of a play) created a safe way for people to explore this complete lack of meaning and total chaos in reality. Nietzsche hated the movement towards Platonism that took place just over 2000 years ago that believed that some kind of order lay behind life. Often times so much of life seems like random chaos . So much of life seems meaningless, and we are left to stare into the abyss, stare into the chasm that is left by so many tragic events. We

ABUNDANCE - How the Abundance Mindset is Destroying the Planet

I first heard about the Abundance mindset whilst reading Stephen Coveys book “The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People” . I love this book and have received a lot from the models and advice found within – including the abundance mindset. What is the abundance mindset? The Abundance mindset is often contrasted with the Scarcity mindset – the idea that there is a shortage of everything. If there is a cake, and lots of people want to eat it, then there will be no cake left for me, therefore I must get there before everyone else and take as much of the cake as possible. The abundance mindset is the opposite of this. If there is a cake, then there is enough for everybody, therefore I don’t need to fight others for it or be underhanded, we can all have a slice. We can see the merits of this model. It essentially says, “You don’t have to climb over others to get ahead, you don’t have to be underhanded, it doesn’t have to be dog eat dog, we can work together and produce

LABELS - Jesus and the Rehumanisation Project

In a curious story found within Mark’s Gospel (Mark 3:20-22), we see Jesus teaching within a house. Two separate groups of people approach Jesus in what is known as a ‘ Markan Sandwich ’. The first group is Jesus' parents. They claim that Jesus has lost his mind , and they have come to “take charge of Him” (in other words, to remove Him forcibly from that place). The second group is a selection of officials from Jerusalem with a charge against Jesus, that of demonic possession (a charge which, if verified, would lead to either exile or execution). The similarity between these two encounters: labelling. The reason that the two parties believe that they have the right to forcibly remove, exile, or execute Jesus is because they have placed a label upon Him. Either insane or possessed . Labels In life, we are often guilty of this same fallacy. We are able to exclude people, marginalise people, and reject people because we have placed a label on them – a

DIRTY - Why Your Church / Charity Should Change It's Bank Account

At my church, we are finally about to change our bank account .  It has been a long journey. Changing your bank account is hard. Changing an organisation's bank account is very hard (so many forms!!!!!!!!). I bet you are wondering why any organisation would go through the hassle of making changing their bank a priority. The Kingdom of God Millions of good people give their hard earned money to the Church each week.  Billions of Pounds (or insert your nationalities currency here) are poured into the Church across the globe, and people have one express purpose for doing so – to build the kingdom of God . This looks different for different churches, whether it be to keep the lights on, run feeding programs, debt management programs, buy new equipment or teas and coffees – but they all have a similar theme: To reveal the transformative love of God to the world and to attempt to remake the world in the life-giving, loving way that we know God sees it. What Actually H