Radio 4 ’s ‘Dessert Island Discs’ has reached it’s 75th anniversary and to celebrate they asked the not yet knighted David Beckham for his musical choice. Amongst his choices were Elton John and the Rolling Stones and it came out in conversation that he has a collection of over 1000 football boots from various matches. Interesting. If you want to listen to the whole program it was broadcast on Radio 4 last Friday (3rd Feb)
So much for desert island discs but how about desert island Christianity? Do you ever struggle with church and community? Do you sometimes wish there was a Dessert Island version of Christianity that allowed you to be a Christian but spin clear of all the hassle of church? You are not alone. This is C.S. Lewis’s view of church when he first became a Christian.
‘To me, religion ought to have been a matter of good men praying alone and meeting by twos and threes to talk of spiritual matters. And then the fussy, time-wasting botheration of it all! the bells, the crowds, the umbrellas, the notices, the bustle, the perpetual arranging and organising. Hymns were (and are) extremely disagreeable to me. Of all musical instruments I liked (and like) the organ least… ’
So, here is a Proverb that may help –
‘locusts have no king,
yet they advance together in ranks;’
Proverbs 30 vs. 27
Okay, its a bit obscure so what do we learn from locusts?
Generally they are pests to farmers but one locust on its own is no problem at all. The problem is they work together in huge groups and cause devastation to crops and vegetation. But although they have no ruler they work together in harmony. They know they can’t go it alone, so they stick together and work as a team.
That is the lesson for us. One purpose of being part of a church is that we work together to accomplish much more than we ever could on our own.
Do you ever get tempted to go soft on church and take a break, distance yourself from the messiness and time-wasting botheration of it all and go it alone – become a desert island Christian? Learn from the locust, learn that you need to be part of the church family and be involved wherever you can.
But the church is far more than just a good team. Just take in this brilliant quote from Paul Tripp.
‘The church is not a theological classroom. It is a conversion, confession, repentance, reconciliation, forgiveness and sanctification centre, where flawed people place their faith in Christ, gather to know and love him better, and learn to love others as he designed.’
Written by Stephen Nicholls, one of the Members of Christ Church Haywards Heath