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About jonbirch

animator, illustrator, character designer, graphic designer. music producer/recording musician. co-owner of PROOST. proost.co.uk
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66 Responses to 748

  1. kRowe says:

    hahaha – I love you Jon… this is brilliant.

    Made me smile – a lot!

    And lets face it, with an eternity of praise and music – lets hope it’s good music!

    Well done Michael also, for (again) conquering the charts – even in death!

  2. Elaine says:

    Made me smile, too! thanks!

  3. ARJWright says:

    I’m sure a lot of folks might not like this too much; but its given me a nice chuckle today.

  4. Angela says:

    I love this one, it’s about grace, isn’t it? About love of our heavenly Father who loves any of his children, no matter what.

  5. bubbybird says:

    I needed this chuckle today……been down some laterly but I have been playing my music a bit more the last 2 days and it does make a difference in our lives….at least mine!

  6. Tiggy says:

    I read this past life experience book and some of it was inter-life experiences and they said that in Heaven we attend workshops and seminars. I suppose there would be some dance ones.

    I guess it’s like Greenbelt without the loos. I have a friend who worries about whether there’ll be toilets in Heaven.

  7. subo says:

    the new commer tries to learn the Can-Can, foxed by the correct slight head tilt and hampered by tight pants

  8. Tiggy says:

    You don’t wear any pants when you do the Can-Can – that’s the whole point! All high kicks and no knickers.

  9. youthworkerpete says:

    This post disturbs me slightly more than the post I was quite vocal on two down (That is NOT a criticisism. ‘Disturbing’ encourages me to vocalise beliefs previously implied but not made explicit, which is why although I feel my theology is in the minority in this particular community I continue to return and enjoy the banter).

    But I fear heaven (if that is what you mean by paradise – I know some traditions take that phrase to mean almost-but-not-quite-yet-heaven) in this picture is pictured as a stereotypical anglican church waiting for some life to be infused.

    I know it was meant in light hearted jest, but do we really think that heaven does not already have all the best tunes with the creator of music as the DJ?

  10. Tiggy says:

    Lord, you do take things so seriously YouthworkerPete! And God forbid the day when they have line dancing in Anglican churches.

    Funnily enough, I wrote a song today about God as Composer. This was one of my earliest understandings of God and I wrote a poem about it as a child. Now I’m refinding that way of relating to God. I think AS would like it Jon. :-)

  11. Forrest says:

    Taking just a fragment of youthworkerpete’s paragraph, and removing it entirely from context,are there people who if they revealed their deepest thoughts would say” I fear heaven “?
    And for what reason(s) would they fear it?
    Sometimes that idea pops up.
    And I wonder.

  12. Tiggy says:

    Apart from my friend who worries about the toilets, I’ve never heard of such a thing. Why would they?

  13. jonbirch says:

    hey youthworkerpete… glad you enjoy the banter… me too. thanks for joining in. :-) given ‘heaven’ in terms of ultimate destination is biblical shorthand for new heavens and new earth, which is the ultimate biblical plan, i thought it best to use the word paradise. i see no reason to believe that humanity with it’s god given creativity will not produce better tunes as the ages move on. i certainly couldn’t think of a biblical argument against it. god likes a new song and a perfected humanity may well throw up some surprisingly well crafted new tunes for the pleasure of it’s maker (maybe some far better than those which came before). :-) and the cartoon was supposed to be delightful, so please don’t be too disturbed. ;-)

  14. Tiggy says:

    Hmm, so will we be in Heaven or on earth?

    Yes, I think the ‘afterlife’ won’t be static. We’ll still do things.

    I think my ‘Balcony of Peace’ may be a gateway into Narnia – the view looks just like it. :-) I haven’t been smoking dope, honest!

  15. Pete Waugh says:

    haha totally rocking pic! Youth worker Pete – from a fellow youth worker also called Pete lighten up, grab your crotch MJ style and do a bit of dancin to loosen the shackles!!

  16. Tiggy says:

    Please don’t!

    The crotch bit I mean. Do any women singers do that? I guess it’s just men who feel the need to constantly draw attention to their genitalia. In Greece you have to do it if you see a priest – I think it’s for good luck.

  17. bubbybird says:

    I had to stop and find the exact name of it but there is a Christian song that talks about “when all of Gods singers Go Home” I plan to be one of them and I plan to sing as loud as I can. My kids use to have a motto that if ya can’t sing good sing LOUD!! (\\\\uj) Sorry as long I kept taking this stuff out my cat Mighty Mouth kept adding so decided to leave it and he left me alone…..God must have been giving him a chance for Mo to express his 2 cents worth!!

  18. JAEL says:

    Forrest @11
    Yeah I do – fear heaven that is. perhaps previously terrified may be more accurate. Never wanted that eternal thing, forever freaks me out

  19. Forrest says:

    I’m gonna slip something that’s off this topic but I just found out about:


    “”Have we found the body of St Paul?

    Deeply moved, the Pope delivered the news on Sunday that fragments of bones found in the tomb traditionally considered to be that of Saint Paul did indeed date from the first or second century.

    Which means that, in all likelihood, they are the bones of the Apostle Paul – bones that have lain there for 1,950 years yet, astonishingly, have only been discovered in our time. “”

    Exceedingly interesting.
    Sure is.

  20. dadube says:

    Tiggy (16) – Lady Ga Ga seems to do the crotch bit rather a lot….eurgh

    Jon I love this one – next time I want one about Aryton teaching us all to drive :D

  21. youthworkerpete says:

    I’m sorry for thinking too seriously… it comes from spending all day describing baptism to 6 year old, telling toddlers Jesus loves them, and playing games involving marshmallows and golden syrup with teenagers sends me home in the mood to get deeper rather than lighter! An occupational hazard! Imagine how my wife and kids feel.

    But Jon, I’m sure I’ve heard that some traditions reconcile ‘today you will be with me in paradise’ with the idea of an ultimate judgement at the end of the world by saying when we die we go to paradise or hades, kind of lite versions of heaven and hell.

    But I couldn’t actually tell you which traditions…

  22. Hehe… One question- why are the Angels happy but jacko looks miserable?

    …And lets face it, with an eternity of praise and music – lets hope it’s good music!…

    I do hope it’s not just music: I really don’t like singing. I’m hoping to spend eternity telling stories in masses of new ways that I can’t even dream about now.

  23. beatthedrum says:

    I hope not I hate his music!

    and i kind of doubt he is there but we never know, I am not to judge that Jesus is

  24. Jason says:

    lol, very good.

  25. rebecca says:

    Andy (#22): I really don’t think any of us needs to worry about whether we will like what we find in heaven. If we didn’t like it (at least on a long-term basis), it wouldn’t be heaven.

    Personally I adore singing, and I’ve certainly heard worse music than Michael Jackson (many churches have something to answer for here*), but give me Vaughan Williams over Michael Jackson any day.

    *An example: one of my friends, looking through the chorus book in a church that we were visiting, found a song for which the words were: “Worthy is the Lamb, worthy is the Lamb, worthy is the Lamb, worthy is the Lamb, worthy is the Lamb…” — you get the idea. It was marked “author unknown”. My friend’s comment was that it should be marked “author unnecessary”.

  26. Jen says:

    Tiggy@11 – would anyone say” I fear heaven“?

    I can remember having a long conversation with a girl who loved God but hated the idea of heaven because she thought it would be nothing but singing all day long. We talked about the reformational idea of the renewed heavens and earth which is much more appealing

  27. Tiggy says:

    Yeah I think Andy that you may be transformed in Heaven and find you really love singing. You may find you’re an amazing singer. You may also find you appreciate all kinds of music.

    That IS pretty amazing about the bones of St. Paul or whoever, though I don’t trust the Vatican not to switch them if they weren’t the right era.

    Pete, I didn’t think youth work included six year olds, though I’ve had some very serious conversations with six year olds. Someone I heard speak the other night does ‘prophetic training’ with them!

  28. Tiggy says:

    OH, on the matter of whether we go to Heaven when we die or at the end of the world, that’s where we get into issues of God and the spiritual realm being beyond time so the timing doesn’t matter.

  29. HisGal says:

    :lol: genius!!!

  30. holyfamoley says:

    Dadube (20) Thankfully, then, it wasn’t Lady Gaga who breathed her last…else all the angels would have to wear sparking breast cones… ;)

  31. Tiggy says:

    I’d wear them! But then I’m no angel. ;-)

  32. holyfamoley says:

    :lol: @ Tiggy – my concerns were more of a Health and Safety nature. Have we done a risk assessment? ;)

  33. Tiggy says:

    Well I keep meaning to buy a lighter. But I’m not too bothered about the sparks – I’ve just always fancied having pointy breasts like in the fifties. Sweater girls are hot!

  34. “…Yeah I think Andy that you may be transformed in Heaven and find you really love singing. You may find you’re an amazing singer. You may also find you appreciate all kinds of music…”

    I had a pastor say that to me once. Unfortunately what HE was really saying was a spiritual version of “When you’re older, you’ll understand” (and become like the rest of the church, presumably)

    His church lost a member soon after.

    I’ve got into endless trouble about that so God’ll have to erase a lot of memories, and remove my generally more visual nature, and desire to sketch as worship or just be outside with his creation…

  35. Tiggy says:

    I think memories will be healed rather than erased. Sketching as worship sounds great. Unfortunately I can barely write, let alone draw.

    How about sunbathing as worship? I think I sometimes blend the two…

  36. I didn’t say they were good sketches :)

    Sunbathing as worship sounds good. I do cycling as worship, but only downhill. I swear too much uphill.

  37. Tiggy says:

    Ah, those old Anglo-Saxon intensifiers…well I expect God hears enough Latin.

    Where’s that ‘lesbian in the bath’ Jon? Or was it a lesbian IN Bath?

  38. janetp says:

    Jon, this cartoon is fab! :)

  39. duttyo says:

    is it just me that wants to make a really inappropriate joke about Angela’s comment at 4?

  40. Tiggy says:

    Er… I thought she was taking it rather seriously. Don’t tell me I’ve missed a double-entendre?

  41. Tiggy says:

    Ahh, something about loving children?

  42. Forrest says:

    Re: Andy in #34 “or just be outside with his creation…”

    There’s definitely something to be said for kites and dragonflies carried aloft, wing and wing, in clear summer skies, in a town on the riverside.

  43. Forrest says:

    Andy, good sir, I’m driven to quote your cycling comment on my blog.

  44. I’m so relieved. i thought it was going to be all Tim Hughes and Darlene wotserface.

  45. jonbirch says:

    btd… you ‘kind of doubt he’s there?’… why? what’s he done to you? or anyone else for that matter.

    christine… heaven help us if the future turns out to be a never ending sunday morning. :-?

  46. beatthedrum says:

    Unfortunately not everyone gets to go to heaven Jon. Many go to the other place…..

  47. Caroline Too says:

    Noooooooo, I couldn’t bear it

  48. Tiggy says:

    Sunday mornings are better than Monday mornings – you can stay in bed. Maybe Heaven is like one long, blissful lie-in but with ministering angels to bring you coffee.

  49. jonbirch says:

    it’s all greek to me, beatthe drm. :-)

  50. Tiggy says:

    Jon, whenever you write btd for beat the drum, I think you are putting an abbreviation for bastard. No reflection on you, btd. But at first I didn’t know what he meant.

    Scuse typos tonight. Lack of sleep….

  51. Angela says:

    @duttyo – I’m always in for a joke:)
    I simply felt happy that moment. About God’s grace and love which has nothing to do with my(our)ideas about how someone has to be to be lovebale.

  52. Caroline Too says:

    I love the ideas of angels dancing

    I just hope that it isn’t to Michael Jackson’s music.

  53. Tiggy says:

    Are they angels? I thought they were humans in their heavenly robes. I hope we don’t have to wear nightdresses ALL the time and I don’t want to wear white unless I’m a lot slimmer in Heaven.

  54. Robb says:

    Does that mean that James Brown is heading up the band in the New Earth?

  55. Tiggy says:

    Oh please, James Taylor. As long as it’s not Graham Kendrick, eh? Can you imagine an eternity of singing, ‘Shine Jesus Shine’? I feel like I’ve been through that already. Last Sunday I was nearly physically sick when we had to sing, ‘It’s all about you, Jesus’. It’s just so cloyingly sentimental.

  56. linus says:

    I was in town briefly on saturday and some ‘evangelists’ we’re executing an especially cheesy version of we wanna see Jesus lifted high. Sample lyrics: “Step by step we’re moving forward,
    Little by little taking ground,
    Every prayer is a powerful weapon,
    Strongholds all come tumbling down
    And down and down and down…… ”

    The look of disdain on people’s faces broke my heart, but i’m aware i’m in no position to judge, having no idea how to share good news with people.

    I expect i won’t like some of the music in heaven. But i’m ok with that cos i hope my sister will be there and it would be unfair if they never played any of the kind of music she likes. I don’t think God is gonna erase our tastes and likes and dislikes cos that is part of who we are. I hope God will flood my personality with loads of joy and grace so that i can celebrate the enjoyment that others are getting from stuff which is not to my taste.

    As for Jacko’s backstage pass, surely the criteria is the same as for all of us: its about the Grace of God, the human heart, trust and surrender. It is, ironically perhaps in this case, not performance based at all.

  57. linus says:

    oh yeah – when i was little i used to be really scared of eternity too. The idea kind of made my brain try and fold in on itself… a bit like getting vertigo from a concept.

    It helped a lot to understand that God is not tied to time like we are. I started thinking of heaven more as an “in the moment” experience than something scarily vast and unending and relentless.

  58. Tiggy says:

    I don’t think ‘eternity’ was ever about time – that’s infinity surely? Eternity as a concept has always been contrasted with time.

    When I was about seven, I didn’t want to learn to tell the time because I wanted to live ‘beyond time’.

    Eternity is something we can experience now.

  59. Tiggy says:

    In the words of Michael Jackson…

    There’s A Place In
    Your Heart
    And I Know That It Is Love
    and this place could be Much
    Brighter Than Tomorrow

    And If You Really Try
    You’ll Find There’s No Need
    To Cry
    In This Place You’ll Feel
    That There’s No Hurt Or Sorrow

    There Are Ways
    To Get There
    If You Care Enough
    For The Living
    Make A Little Space
    Make A Better Place…

    Heal The World
    Make It A Better Place
    For You And For Me
    And The Entire Human Race
    There Are People Dying
    If You Care Enough
    For The Living
    Make A Better Place
    For You And For Me

    If You Want To Know Why
    There’s A Love That
    Cannot Lie
    Love Is Strong
    It Only Cares For
    Joyful Giving

    If We Try
    We Shall See
    In This Bliss
    We Cannot Feel
    Fear Or Dread
    We Stop Existing And
    Start Living

    Then It Feels That Always
    Love’s Enough For
    Us Growing
    Make A Better World
    Make A Better World…

    Heal The World
    Make It A Better Place
    For You And For Me
    And The Entire Human Race
    There Are People Dying
    If You Care Enough
    For The Living
    Make A Better Place
    For You And For Me

    And The Dream We Were
    Conceived In
    Will Reveal A Joyful Face
    And The World We
    Once Believed In
    Will Shine Again In Grace
    Then Why Do We Keep
    Strangling Life

    Wound This Earth
    Crucify Its Soul
    Though It’s Plain To See
    This World Is Heavenly
    Be God’sGlow

    We Could Fly So High
    Let Our Spirits Never Die
    In My Heart
    I Feel You Are All
    My Brothers

    Create A World With
    No Fear
    Together We’ll Cry
    Happy Tears
    See The Nations Turn
    Their Swords
    Into Plowshares

    We Could Really Get There
    If You Cared Enough
    For The Living
    Make A Little Space
    To Make A Better Place…

    Heal The World
    Make It A Better Place
    For You And For Me
    And The Entire Human Race
    There Are People Dying
    If You Care Enough
    For The Living
    Make A Better Place
    For You And For Me

  60. Mark says:

    I’m an RE teacher and we’ve been looking at some images of Jesus recently, so I thought I’d show the kids this cartoon and number 746. They loved them. They were pretty sure Jacko was worshipped now he was dead. But they thought that before he died, people thought he was a wierdo.

  61. Tiggy says:

    Ha, I used to teach RE Mark and one of the kids drew Bart Simpson on a cross.

  62. Robb says:

    Well I may as well make it five RE teacher posts in a row….

    …well ex-RE teacher.

    Can you become onologically not a teacher? I still have a PGCE…

  63. Robb says:

    Silly typo. OnTologically.

  64. Tiggy says:

    If you do some form of teaching somewhere.

  65. dadube says:

    lol just revisited this one and saw the RE teacher messages – I showed this to my classes in RE too (and recommend the site to everyone in my department regularly):) Jon – you should do a book especially aimed at RE teachers!

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