Sunday 6th September, 2015

Welcome to everyone joining us today for Playgroup Sunday – and it’s Father’s Day which entirely appropriate! We hope you have a wonderful time with us this morning and experience a true sense of belonging to our Heavenly Father’s family.

I came across an article the other day about one famous father,  Bear Grylls, (who’s also a member of the family) – here’s an excerpt:

He's the world's most famous non-fictional adventurer; the star of numerous jungle-based TV shows and a huge celebrity all over the world. He's also the Chief Scout, and a reported gazillionaire thanks to his branded range of survival knives, hatchets and head-mounted torches.

Famously, Bear is also a committed Christian, a subject which almost always comes up in interviews. Here are just a few of the ways he's explained his faith to those interviewers, from talking about his own 'conversion' to Christianity, to painting a picture of the radical Jesus to whom he's drawn.

1. Bear on his 'conversion' moment

"I remember praying a simple prayer up a tree one evening and saying, 'God, if you're like I knew you as a kid, would you be that friend again?' And it was no more complicated than that. And actually the amazing thing is that all God asks is that we sort of open the door and He'll do the rest. So often we kinda hide behind our yearning for love and acceptance with loads of complicated theological questions, and actually once that's stripped away what we really are is just somebody who wants to have that relationship with your Father."  (From an interview with Relevant magazine.)

2. Bear on the radical Jesus

"The journey's been that faith has been the wildest ride. And Jesus, the heart of the Christian faith is the wildest, most radical guy you'd ever come across. He was always hanging around with the prostitutes and the tax collectors and having parties and banquets, and I found myself drawn to that character, not the kind of fluff that we like to box as religion."  (From an interview with CBN's The 700 club)

3. Bear on faith vs religion

"Christianity is not about religion. It's about faith, about being held, about being forgiven. It's about finding joy and finding home. We all want that, but nobody wants religion. Why do people turn away from faith? They're not, they're turning away from religion most of the time. I've yet to meet anyone who doesn't want to be forgiven or held or find peace or joy in their life. We try loads of other stuff—we think booze or foxy women or whatever will fill it—but it doesn't fill the hole." (From an interview with Relevant magazine.)

God bless, Happy Father’s day,  Ian.