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From the Archives: Minister’s Musings August 2006 20 July 2007

Posted by Dr Moose in Faith, Life, Ponderings.

I’m trying to write the latest letter for one of the local publications in MLPK, and have just checked the letters for the last few years. (Whether I’m trying to find something to steal or trying avoid repetition I’ll leave you to decide!)

However, having read last August’s I thought (in my vanity) that maybe it deserved an airing – to prove I’m still alive and, if nothing else, to remind us about the change in the weather!

As I write this we are all sweltering in the heat wave. (I can’t predict what it will be like by the time you read this letter, of course)! Still, a little reading around in newspapers and on the Internet finds plenty of stories of drought, complaints about petty regulations, and, of course, comparisons to 1976.
I’m old enough to remember that summer, but not in any real detail. Old enough to ride around on my bike with my friends, no money worries, no concept of drugs, alcohol or sex. The privileged life of a child. The only different thing about 1976 for me was seeing lots of seriously brown lawns. I’ve not noticed them here in 2006!
Are your memories of ’76 as simple and nostalgic? (If you have any, of course)! Nostalgia, fondly looking back at the past, is something most of us engage in. We might not quite say “when I was young…” like the stereotypical senior citizen, but the thought’s there. The danger of thinking that somehow life was better then. Simpler. Slower. More tuneful, even!
But was it really? In some ways, maybe. But in most cases life was just different. We’ve seen lots of technological progress, personal computers, mobile phones, iPods and countless other things. But have they all made life better? All I know is that nobody asked us. I doubt if any of us have ever really thought it through. It just happened. Like Topsy and Tim we “just growed.” Technology and thought progressed, and we consumed.
Nostalgia can be a way of anchoring us in time, giving us some landmarks in our lifelines. Even so the saying is true “nostaligia ain’t what it used to be!” Most of the time it wasn’t quite as golden as we remember it. Human nature hasn’t changed, even if we might cringe at some of the attitudes of 30 years ago or so. (Just watch old episodes of some old sitcoms to find them – and not just The Good Life!) The cure for nostalgia is engagement. Finding what it really was like.
And God, as revealed in Jesus, hasn’t changed either. As a society our ignorance of Christian faith has increased, as a culture our understanding is disappearing. The cure remains the same – to find in the pages of the story of Jesus a character and a message as relevant now as it was 30 years ago or 300 hundred years ago, and beyond. The true question – with nostalgia, with faith, with all of life – is whether we are willing to find out.
I trust that this month, will be one of happy, and accurate, memories!


1. Anonymous - 12 August 2007

Keep’em coming!!!
Love to read your blog!

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