Thursday, July 02, 2009
How to find God
On Channel 4 on Sunday there was a programme on called "How to find God", you can catch it on 4OD. Its a show that records the lives and events of some agnostics who go to Alpha. We are taken on a journey to see how they respond to Alpha, the questions they have and their response at the end.
Some bits I wasn't sure about. I am not too convinced whether its right to get non Christians to try to speak in tongues. I also wasn't sure whether the narrator was being sarcastic and trying to expose Alpha as a ploy to brainwash people. But what it did show was real people coming from very real and diverse backgrounds that have real questions. The one thing I love about Alpha and Christianity explored is that it is for everyone and anyone can come with any questions they like.
I have seen Christianity Explored work in Exeter. A good meal and a Gospel message is key. Bringing friends along is essential and being honest and real is important. This year through Christianity Explored I have seen a number of people come to know Jesus and want to give up their lives to follow him. These weren't people brought up as Christians nor were they brainwashed. Instead they were shown who Jesus is through the Gospels, they were shown the evidence, their questions were answered as much as possible and then they made up their minds. They weighed up the evidence. Nothing spooky happened. Real people seeing the truth of who Jesus is and making a response. It isn't something to sit on the fence about.
Alpha and Christianity explored does work, not as a magic formula, but because the Gospel is true and when you present who Jesus really is through the Gospel then lives will be changed, which can be seen on the programme. But for some it doesnt work and they walk away not wanting to know more - its sad, but their hearts are veiled to the truth and we can continue to pray for them and continue to show them Jesus but it is God that removes that veil. It doesnt mean we say that those events don't work, because our trust isn't in them but in God. It means that we keep striving, keep bringing friends along and keep showing them Jesus.