Sunday 4th October, 2015

Welcome to everyone joining us for Playgroup Sunday! We hope you have a great time with us this morning over coffee & cake, interactive engagement with the Bible and then if possible stay for lunch with us too.

In our gathering this morning we will enjoy some activities with and for children but also engage adults with one of the “hard” lessons Jesus taught. The parable of the Rich Man & Lazarus is confronting on a number of levels.

1.       It challenges the idea that “making it rich” is enough

2.       It challenges the idea that if you are rich it must be because you have been blessed by God

3.       It debunks the idea that our choices in this life have no effect on what happens after we die

4.       Disturbingly, it suggests that no amount of invitation, cajoling, education, advice or argument will persuade some people that they must respond to Jesus.

5.       It affirms that God has the interests of all people on his heart and will finally act according to His justice

6.       It affirms that God knows our hearts . . .

 

On the 16th tee yesterday, one of my playing group commented, “Why do we get so upset by missing a putt, when there are Syrian refugees struggling to survive?”

Ouch! Great question!!

This led to a fairly unusual and serious conversation after everyone else had left with regards why God acted decisively in Jesus 2000 years ago and not at some earlier or other time . . . (but that’s another story).

But in terms of perspective – it was really helpful. We do tend to get caught up in our first-world problems don’t we? And he asked, “How can we save the world? Is it too late?”

As a man of science and statistics he was noting that all the trends are bad and that perhaps 40-50 years might see the world out!

I gave him two suggestions:

1.       That we each need to choose regularly, to do things that benefit others, make sacrifices so that others might gain life.

2.       That God is in control of the world and that part of our faith is believing that He won’t let the world be destroyed

How do you deal with the big issues of life? I’d love to chat about them with you sometime . . .

God bless,    Ian.