This Advent at our church we are looking at different ‘tions’. We have looked at Advent preparation and anticipation so far, and this Sunday we’ll be looking at Advent frustration. In order to help prepare for this I posted a Facebook status inviting friends to comment on the things they find most frustrating about modern life. The comments so far are very interesting. I am not going to offer any hints here, but if you are a Facebook friend of mine and would like to add your thoughts please go to Facebook
[not now! Too late… let’s hope they come back]
and add your thoughts or ‘like’ someone else’s to give a sense of how widely shared that frustration is.
What has interested me particularly is the range of frustrations, and the causes of the frustrations. Some are caused by technology and equipment, some are caused by people. Some relate to attitudes and some relate to actions. Some relate to change and some relate to culture. It’s fascinating.
There’s a lot out there that’s frustrating us. And if we allowed it to this could result in a lot of stress, which in turn can have serious symptoms and health implications. Perhaps we should adopt the Jesus-attitude to life: “Don’t worry about life… look first for what God is doing and his righteousness and you’ll gain a better perspective on things.”(Matthew 6:25, 33, Niv*)
I have a sense that Jesus was quite chilled and laid back. Not much seems to have caused him to get stressed. In fact as I read the gospels it seems that the biggest frustration was the inability of his friends to ‘get’ him and to understand what he was trying to show them about God’s love, forgiveness, blessing and grace.
I wonder what is causing him most frustration today. Is it churches? Is it me?
Thankfully he is loving, forgiving, blesses and shows grace when we fail to be good free samples of him (as churches and as individuals). He not only gives us fresh starts and clean slates but he also promises to help us if we allow his Spirit to work within us.
Be blessed, be a blessing
*Niv = Nick’s iffy version: my own loose paraphrase.