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WE GET TO SHAPE WHERE WE LIVE

WHAT KIND OF NEIGHBOURHOOD DO YOU WANT TO LIVE IN?

Cris Rogers

In recent years we have seen gay hate shootings, terrorism, Political leaders murdered and the racist outbursts post the EU referendum. The clinical psychologist Dr. Robert Lusson says thatFear is a bigoted master compelling us to behaviours and actions we would never choose were we free from its incessant calling.” I liked this; fear is an intolerant master that drives us.

 

IDEAS vs PEOPLE.

The reality is, communities are not made up of ideas, but of people. We may want and talk of peace but until we become peaceful we will never see what we dream of. In other words we have to lead the way in peacemaking and community love.

Think back to the witch-hunts of days gone by. People didn't wake up bitter, they wanted and looked for peaceful communities but rather than being lead by peace they were lead by fear for this goal. So they hunted down anyone different from them and burnt them. They believed you created peace by getting rid of those unlike themselves. This belief never leads to real peace, but a fear of stepping out of line.

Our society now does the same with the media and social media. We are able to run people out of town by publicly shaming and naming them because of fear.

The reality is communities become what they see others doing. We mimic those we think are in power. If those in power behave as people of fear then those they lead will follow suit. The reality is we as people can be naturally driven by fear. To be driven by love is a choice and takes hard work.

Fear will always drive us to tribalism, tribalism will lead us to closing down our boarders, and closing our borders will lead us to conflict.

We must not ask ourselves "why do ‘they’ behave like that (tribalism), but why do I behave like that (humility)".

AN ALTERNATE ROUTE.
Jesus presents us with alternative routes to fear: Awareness, forgiveness, understanding and love in any order are our tools for creating a new road. A road where we are driven not by our fears, but by faith and hope in people; neighbourhoods; and communities, and drive to believe forgiveness and reconciliation is always a better way.

Jesus said, “Blessed are the peace makers for they shall inherit the earth”.

The war makers and hate broadcasters inherit hell and create a hell on earth. But those who practice peace-making; reconciliation; and love sharing, inherit the kingdom of God because as we do these things God is present and real. Jesus also said “those who fight by the sword die by the sword”, we don't have swords but we do have tongues and we have social media. If we create a culture of back stabbing and anger we will ultimately be consumed by it and finally die by it.

BOOM {My exciting main point.}

When we are driven by fear we are driven to suspicion, distrust and disgrace; which means lack of forgiveness. But when we are driven by love we are accepting, trusting and graceful; meaning bountiful forgiveness.

Which do we want to see the world live by?

So be it for us too.

SOMETHING NEW.

I want to challenge us to live by another song, a better song to violence, public humiliation and anger.

Let's be slow to judge, quick to listen.

Let's not be people of self-preservation and protection.

Let's be willing to give people the benefit of the doubt.

Let's believe the best for people.

Let's hold people up to what they can be, not what they seem to be or have been.

Let's have greater hope for people than they have for themselves.

Let's not fuel anger or disunity but create community and harmony.

 

It's worth asking ourselves regularly…

What kind of neighbourhood do you dream of?

 

Don't just dream of it, you have the ability to create it by being the first to lay the paving stone of hope, love and peace. What do you do today that will start this in your own community?

Cris is married to Beki and together they lead All Hallows Bow in East London.

Big and small disciples together

Thoughts on Children’s Discipleship

Dan Scott

So how do we disciple children? Is the classroom the best way to help them fall in love with Jesus? Can we be doing more to share Jesus in the day to day as fellow disciples and as parents?

Interview with Rowan Williams

In this episode, we talk with Dr Rowan Williams about Discipleship and the art of watching and waiting to see what Jesus might do next.

Cris Rogers with Rowan Williams

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