Dale Appleby

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Weekly Reflections

Which way now?

20 Sep 2009

“Would you tell me, please, which way I ought to go from here?”

“That depends a good deal on where you want to get to,” said the Cat.

“I don’t much care where – “ said Alice.

“Then it doesn’t matter which way you go,” said the Cat.

“ – so long as I get somewhere,” Alice added as an explanation.

“Oh, you’re sure to do that,” said the Cat, if you only walk long enough.”

Sometimes church seems a bit like Alice’s adventure. We want to go somewhere but we don’t know where. And the advisors often seem as unhelpful as the Chesire Cat.  Or we try this direction and that direction and find ourselves still in Wonderland.

“In that direction,” the Cat said, waving its right paw round, “lives a Hatter: and in that direction,” waving the other paw, “lives a March Hare. Visit either you like: they’re both mad.”

Finding direction for a church can be difficult. Even with GPS we still need to know where we want to head. Actually that is where the problem lies. It is not we who have to set the direction. The question is, “Where does the Head want us to head?”

Fortunately the Gospel Positioning Story has given us a heading. To the nations. To the ends of the earth. To all the tribes and languages and peoples. With the gospel of repentance and forgiveness. With the announcement of Christ’s Lordship.

Church life can sometimes feel like Wonderland – lots of activity but not going anywhere. Indeed some church life is like Wonderland. How to get out of the dream?

Remember how Alice got out?


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