it’s cold at the top, where the white roses grow

Well, after a week hidden away completely from the real world (at the Parachute festival), I’ve returned to discover that them there Arctic Monkeys have only gone and become the fastest biggest new bandy thing that there’s ever been (in Britain) – bless their hearts!

It really does something for the soul to have some lads from your town do so flipping well, especially when Sheffield is hardly the sort of place to blow its own trumpet (although the scarcity of trumpets, and excuses for their use, also contributes).  My chest is swelling with gentle pride, and this gentle kiwi morning now includes a much more pronounced Yorkshire twang in my mouth.

Now if only Bromheads Jacket could do the same …

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Living in Colour

                     The vision of Christ that thou dost see
                          Is my vision’s greatest enemy.
                     Thine has a great hook nose like thine;
                       Mine has a snub nose like to mine.
                       Thine is the Friend of all Mankind;
                      Mine speaks in parables to the blind.
                Thine loves the same world that mine hates;
                      Thy heaven doors are my hell gates.
                          Socrates taught what Meletus
                     Loath’d as a nation’s bitterest curse,
                      And Caiaphas was in his own mind
                            A benefactor to mankind.
                       Both read the Bible day and night,
                  But thou read’st black where I read white
                                                                        [william blake]

I’ve been thinking.  You know how you get all these excitingly dull conversations/arguments (mostly between Christians) about truth, objectivity/subjectivity, and so forth?  The gist is that we have to decide whether we’re a ‘black & white’ person (ie. something is right or it’s not) or we can be a ‘shades of grey’ person (ie. "well, I don’t agree with you, but that doesn’t mean we can’t both be right.")  Those are the options.

I’ve been uncomfortable with those descriptions for a while, especially cos I don’t like being told what I am or have to be.  But in the last few weeks, I’ve started thinking stuff like, "I’m BORED of seeing truth in blacks & whites & greys – I want to see it in COLOUR!"

I told my friend Jordan this on Sunday (he’s a film director, aiding my understanding), and he helpfully pointed out that ‘black’ and ‘white’ don’t technically exist – they are just concepts, unattainable to humans.

Okay, so apply that to Truth:  Pure Truth (white) is not attainable to us, but neither is Pure un-Truth.  God is Pure Truth – He is The Light – made up of a spectrum of truth-colours.  We can glimpse parts of the spectrum as individuals (I quite like green), and together, our combined truths could (maybe, potentially, possibly) add up to pure whiteness of combined Truth – we bring out the God-colours in the world.  How does that sound?

[you can add that to your ‘Pure spotless Bride’ eschatological theology if you like]

being befriended

i’ve just been in a grump for the last half an hour, and my friend Merrick just came and rescued me from it.  he’s about 15 months old, and isn’t the best at extended conversations or dispensing wisdom, or balancing.  but he does know how to throw a balloon in the air, stick his tongue out, and sit on a grumpy person’s lap …

sojourning

We are now 4 and a half days into our little Factory-in-NZ gathering, and, as you will know if you know anything about these things, that means that it feels like we’ve been together for about a month or something (in a nice way).

Sojourn is being really good, without really SHOCKING/overly surprising me yet (although my mind did get almost to the point of popping yesterday, again in a very nice way).  It’s weird to do a gathering in another country (cos I’m part of hosting it, but am a foreigner), and I definitely miss the presence of some of my Factory family, without whom it feels like one of the colours has been taken out of the rainbow (cos it’s beautiful, but still missing something).  It’s really cool watching what is different in doing this in kiwi culture, and in the different perspectives that come through people like Jay & Cindy leading, when they’ve only seen snippets of Factory stuff before.

But yeah, there has definitely been some fairy dust floating around the last couple of days 🙂

Burning Out

Man, it seems like everyone is running at the end of themselves around me at the moment – doing and doing and doing and doing (and talking about how much doing we’re doing), and then carrying on and doing some more.

And of course all I want to do is make friends and explain why I’m not burdened by any of that stuff (cos I’m really not), but I don’t know how I can.