thanks dave! :-)
a bit late for the marathon, but just incase anyone wants to give a small donation towards supporting ex-offenders
Does anybody want to sponsor my pastor Paul as he runs the marathon?, My church is going to loose it`s building in August as the lease runs out. They want to buy the building for Bench Outreach which is the charity that works with alcoholics, homeless, drug addicts, ex offenders that I go and cook for on Sundays.
This is a hard one Jon. There are many in church who go not because they want to be part of a loving community serving Jesus and the people around them but becuase they always have done.
While those on the right of the picture have been let down by society, and of course by the choices they have made.
The person that changes both sides of that picture is of course our loving Saviour Jesus. He can break people out of the mediocraty of just showing up on a sunday because thats what “We do” into a true follower of Jesus and member of the church community.
He can also turn around the prisoners life, and break that pattern of offend / prison / release / offend….
Personally Im thankfull he has set me free and has put me on the straight path with the narrow gate.
Darn it only got second place… one of these days ill get in first!
Crikey, you know, I’m almost more scared at the thought of people being institutionalised to churchgoing than by those institutionalised into prison life…
I suspect that the numbers of folk who attend church ‘cos they always have is dwindling… perhaps the above 65 age range? I don’t think that baby-boomers will do that.
Perhaps an interesting conversation would be created by shifting the question from
Why do people go into church?
What are Christ’s followers equipped to do as they leave the church service?
I don’t go because I like it. I go because I am asked to by JC.
robb… julius caesar asked you to go to church? :-)
I think there is still alot of this going on Caroline, People who;s parents were christians and going to church is the norm on a sunday. I know a lot of people like that.
Leave – To live for Christ and reach out for the lost.
Its the srooms’ Jon Robb has a healthy supply of them. Apparently wellington told him to eat some more yesterday
Is it only for the ones you cook for? :-)
Seems there are a lot of first time converts going from one location to the other in both directions these days (some more high profile than others)!
man, i hate these reply buttons!!! :-(
Isn’t church something we ARE, not something we go to?
Aa JB does that make you one below JC Jon? :-)
Me too! :-)
I cannot stand them either what a pain!
disagree, if used well they can help us have an easy to follow conversation… rather than having to find the different ‘threads’ of conversations all mixed up in a single order of posts…
strongly agree, Hayles
@beatthedrum – don’t we all think we’re on the narrow road with the small gate ? So hard to tell those gates apart sometimes.
agreed too, hayles. absolutely.
No i dont think we do many think we are on a wide road with a wide gate mark.
Yes – obviously. Like most words in the english language it has two meanings. It is also a place and time like in the cartoon we are talking about.
Church (n) a building for the confinement of persons held while awaiting trial, persons sentenced after conviction, etc.
A few nice pics of some prisons…
Oh BTD, what on earth does that mean? Can’t you spot the jargon? Don’t worry I’ve been around in
the evangellybaby world to be able to work out what you’re getting at, but
to live for Christ? will that mean exactly the same thing for different people?
to reach the lost? Of course I long to help my neighbours recognise and respond
to Jesus’ love for them, but what will that mean day-to-day?
and that’s the conversation I want to have about church family gatherings, how will they help
very different people in very different contexts to leave, equipped and encouraged to follow
Jesus more obediently, and make Him more apparent to our neighbours…
I am not keen. The threads of the conversation are kept together but it is much harder to find out what is what. I used to scroll to the bottom of the “my comments” page. Now I have to re-read the whole flippin’ thread.
Nearly missed that I didn’t even use the word “church” wrongly earlier on in the thread.
And the “my comments” page doesn’t work with replies.
Sometimes it’s quite easy to find the narrow gate — see, for example, http://www.flickr.com/photos/deano/3410540272/in/photostream/ . The difficult part is getting through if you insist on using a car. You need to walk, or cycle.
(Apologies. I’m being extremely flippant).
can’t say i would be addicted to either of these as institutions. both lack appeal!
So if Church is both something we are and an institution, is Prison something we are too?
I don’t know if folk are addicted to prison – I’ve not met any – but there are certainly loads and loads who are more COMFORTABLE in prison. They are scared outside. It’s a huge problem.
I think this is very very true in church too. Most of my friends, now, are non-churchgoers. But at one time (about 20 years ago admittedly) I realised that I hardly knew anyone outside of church at all and I was involved in so many church activities I was in danger of being scared of being outside.
i think that’s probably a better way of putting it, annedroid. i think there could well be a large proportion of church folk who fear being taken out of their comfort zones, perhaps for them the comfort zone is the institution… but then, don’t we all fear being taken out of our comfort zones? :-?
I’m close to someone that told me once that prision was the only place he ever was that he felt like he “belonged”. That the whole rest of his life he never felt that.
sad huh? :-(
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