Monday, August 24, 2009

I hope

Note: This was recently published as one of Nathan Brown's final editorials as editor of Record, the Adventist church's news magazine in the South Pacific Division.

I hope . . .

I hope we do justice, love mercy and walk humbly with our God.

I hope Christianity is real--to you.

I hope we can better seek, celebrate and create beauty in our world.

I hope we can learn to listen better--to God, to each other and to our communities.

I hope we really believe that "it is more important to be kind than it is to be right."

I hope we can focus more on faithfulness than our various measures of "success."

I hope we can admit that "we don't know"--that we don't have all the answers and that's OK.

I hope we can be less worried about control and more interested in community.

I hope we can one day recognise women as equally human, equally Christian, equally capable and equally called.

I hope we spend less time reinforcing our walls than building our centre.

I hope you're a treehugger, both literally and metaphorically.

I hope we have stopped "selling" God.

I hope our first response to disaster is to help the hurting, not pull out our prophecy charts.

I hope we can learn to be more humble, more generous, more courageous and more joyful.

I hope you watch the sunset sometimes.

I hope you don't believe everything you read in our church publications.

I hope we don't really think music is as important as some would have us believe.

I hope we can find better ways to remember and share Sabbath, and better things to do on Sabbath afternoons.

I hope you are seriously bothered by injustice, poverty and oppression--and are moved to do something about them.

I hope you rejoice you're a Christian.

I hope we aren't so busy running a church that we are forgetting to participate in the kingdom of God.

I hope you watch less TV.

I hope we can learn to address hard questions, to disagree well and to embrace those who are different.

I hope your explanation of what you believe actually sounds like "good news"--to you and to others.

I hope we can find our voice as a church and begin to speak out on things that matter in ways that our community understands.

I hope there is a stage of life between bright young thing and old hack.

I hope you're vegetarian--for so many reasons.

I hope we are a church that serves the world, not panders to the noisy few.

I hope we can lament.

I hope we still "believe in Christ, live the life."

I hope you read a good book this week.

I hope we can practise the art of apology--and the art of forgiveness.

I hope we are aware of how technology changes us and that we resist blindly pursuing the latest gadget or fad, instead seeking what is most real.

I hope we can learn from other religions, faiths and traditions, respecting their best and seeking their good.

I hope you enjoy and share some kind of art, creativity or similar passion.

I hope we can become a church that values fresh questions more than tired answers.

I hope we aren't just another brand of Church Inc.

I hope we can develop a faith that is more ordinary and everyday--and, in this way, ordinary and everyday can be redeemed.

I hope we can come up with--or borrow--better reasons why we do and believe some of the good things we do.

I hope you believe we can change the world.

I hope we maintain a sense of wonder at the hugeness, variety and miracles of life.

I hope faith, hope and love still remain.

I hope "right temporarily defeated is stronger than evil triumphant" and that it is possible to overcome evil with good.

I hope in Jesus, His life, His death and His resurrection.

I hope to see Him some day.

I hope and I pray.

I hope . . .

"Much dreaming and many words are meaningless. Therefore stand in awe of God" (Ecclesiastes 5:7, NIV).


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