#32: Forgive: #40ways40days

Jesus said to his disciples, ‘Be on your guard! If another disciple sins, you must rebuke the offender, and if there is repentance, you must forgive. And if the same person sins against you seven times a day, and turns back to you seven times and says, “I repent”, you must forgive.’ (Luke 17:3-4)

Australia wasn’t really a place I’d always been dying to see. But the real problem was that, without knowing it, I had booked my Down Under speaking tour for the weekend when two of my parishioners were having their wedding—a wedding I had already agreed to officiate. Oops. Continue reading “#32: Forgive: #40ways40days”

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#3: Resist privilege: #40ways40days

John said to the crowds: ‘Produce fruit in keeping with repentance. And do not begin to say to yourselves, ‘We have Abraham as our father.’ For I tell you that out of these stones God can raise up children for Abraham. The axe is already at the root of the trees, and every tree that does not produce good fruit will be cut down and thrown into the fire.’ ‘What should we do then?’ the crowd asked. (Luke 3:8-10)

Apologies to all those on a Fodmap diet who may find this reflection upsetting but the thing about good fruit, is that when you taste it, you can’t get enough. I wonder what type of fruit the ‘fruit of repentance’ is?  Mass produced, cool stored for the export market? Or heritage variety, organically grown for the local market? Continue reading “#3: Resist privilege: #40ways40days”

#2: Repent: #40ways40days

The word of God came to John son of Zechariah in the wilderness. He went into all the region around the Jordan, proclaiming a baptism of repentance for the forgiveness of sins. (Luke 3:2b-3)

Once a little boy wrote a poem called ‘The Monster Who Was Sorry.’ He began by admitting that he hates it when his father yells at him; his response in the poem is to throw his sister down the stairs, and then to wreck his room, and finally to wreck the whole town. The poem concludes: ‘Then I sit in my messy house and say to myself, ‘I shouldn’t have done all that.’’ Continue reading “#2: Repent: #40ways40days”

Rethinking Forgiveness

Listen here.

A year or two ago, someone outside the church contacted me. They had come across one of my sermons, and they wanted to talk. We met, and I asked what was bothering them. “We-ell,” they said, “It’s as if you’re saying that God loves us even before we have repented.” “That’s exactly what I’m saying,” I said. “I can’t accept that,” they replied, “That’s definitely not right.” Continue reading “Rethinking Forgiveness”

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