Identity, forgiveness and Peace (Ourselves and themuns)

We want to be perfect now? Why? Because we want to be able to experience God fully now in these moments, because we want to be used by God somehow?

Or because it sucks to be you right now? Because today you are acutely aware of who you are not and how far you are from who you want to be? And it feels horrible.

Grace is difficult to offer other people sometimes. But not nearly as hard as it is to offer ourselves. We constantly point to our sin rather than to the freedom that is already ours. You wouldn’t even imagine doing this to someone else (or maybe you would) but yet it’s so easy to beat ourselves up.

Why is this? Why do we choose to live this way? Continue reading

David Ervine: A tribute to when politicians were brave.

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I was 23 years old when David Ervine died. I didn’t know a great deal about politics but I knew that I liked him. I am not a loyalist. I’m not a Unionist, Nationalist or Republican. I am not a supporter of any one political party. I am more interested in how a politician can help Northern Ireland move on from our terrible past (and present).

David Ervine was someone who stood against everything that I thought loyalism stood for. Anger, anti Sinn Fein, stuck in the past. He made me see that not all loyalists were violent and ignorant. He made me see that I was wrong.

He stood out from the crowd in NI politics. He was likable and intelligent. The term visionary has never been more aptly applied to a politician in Northern Ireland now and in the past.

I can’t help but wonder where we would be if he was still alive. Continue reading

An Easter message for Christmas: Flags and our identity

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There is a story in the Bible about the moment just before Jesus was taken captive by the Government. Jesus was about to experience unimaginable pain and torture. He was going to be humiliated and He was going to face death. His best friends had recently deserted him at the time when He needed them most. One of whom was responsible for turning Jesus in.

Up steps Peter, the same Peter who denied knowing Jesus three times. He had a chance to redeem himself so he takes out his sword and cuts off the ear of one of Jesus’ captors.

If there was a moment for the son of God to use all the powers He had at His disposal, this was it. This was the moment that they had all been waiting for. Jesus could now accomplish what he promised and there would be no chance for anyone who stood in His way. The violence that they had planned for Jesus would be no match for the revolution He could now unleash.

Except, that’s not exactly how the story went. Continue reading