We can look forward to a brighter future with Jesus
By The Rev David Bagwell
SOMEONE crashed into me last week – I was there on the corner of Cross Street and Chapel Street when this young man banged into me from behind.
Head bowed with a mobile phone to his ear, he walked around the corner and didn't see me – a stationary pedestrian waiting to cross the road – until it was too late.
It's a growing problem as more and more people walk and phone concurrently along our narrow pavements, not looking around them let alone looking forward, which is a shame, because apart from the safety considerations one of the joys of walking is the chance to take in what's around you.
And spiritually, too, there's a message here, as the ability to look forward lies at the heart of any meaningful progress in life.
At the start of a new year, it's good to be able to look forward to something new, something different, something better. And then to plan for it, work for it and dream it.
The story of Jesus is a story of someone who gave those who had nothing to look forward to a new beginning, gave those who had lost all hope something to hope for, gave those who had no direction a wider and deeper purpose in life.
Simeon, having met with the child Jesus in the temple, expressed it: "With my own eyes I have now seen the salvation which God has prepared for all people" – Luke ii, 30 to 31.
He was saying that he was now able to look forward to a brighter and better future, knowing that God was making all things new.
For those who at the start of this year are only looking back with fading memories rather than looking forward with expectation, or looking around but not sure how to move on, Jesus can still be "the way, the truth and the life" – John xiv, 6.
Despite the economic gloom, be assured that there is still much to look forward to as we travel on together with Jesus as our guide.
I ask you, if you were to subscribe to a news feed on an on-line news media outlet, would you be surprised if - in amongst the stories about Government cuts and car crashes on the region's roads - the above was included (presumably by someone with some degree of journalistic experience)?
No. Neither would I. Hence the following was sent to them as I reported the 'article' as 'religious abuse':
Yet again, I am complaining about religious screeds under the guise of news on your site. And I am fed up with it.
Would you please stop this practice with immediate effect.
Also, would you please send me a statement of your intent on the inclusion of further 'articles' of this stripe in the future, so I can make a considered decision about what action I am to take with your insistence on promulgating anti-journalistic practices?