Sunday, January 21, 2007

Mish Bish 2.1

Sorry that these titles are getting repetitive. Bishop Mike Hills blog has a great post on cynicism and what's wrong with it. I've written and spoken several times recently on encouraging a culture of 'having a go', and it was great to read this:

Criticising everything and everybody is likely to stop people from having a go. We all need to do something and the sooner we start, the better. No one strategy is perfect, but a lot of imperfect attempts will make some kind of difference, which is what we need.

Of course it’s not just the corridors of environmental innovation that are haunted by cynicism. We are cynical about almost everything, happier to decry than celebrate. This is true in our churches and can apply to the “Fresh Expressions” stuff. Sometimes, I sense, people are quick to leap in and make their criticisms (e.g. “it’s only an old way of being church in a new venue”). I’ve done it myself.

The first rule of innovation is to give people permission to fail. God knows we need a group of out on the edge, entrepreneurial church leaders who are prepared to have a go. Of course they will make mistakes; of course they will create some ideas which won’t work; little they do will be perfect. But let’s get behind them rather than greet them and their outrageous plans with an unhealthy cynicism.

To that faithful, often exhausted and frustrated band of church leaders who, in their own way, are trying to make a difference, I simply say this: Thank you and please don’t stop what your trying to achieve!

His post started with comments about the environment, which seem all the more spot on after this evenings Attenborough programme on the BBC. It's ironic to see, on the BBC homepage right now (just after 9.30pm on Sunday night) a feature on winter sports venues. They could have added 'only for the next 20 years' - it's quite a weird thought that in a decade or two we could be giving birth to the first generation of Brits who will never see snow falling in their own country. At one stage during the programme I got the guilt thing and switched off the two lamps and gas fire in our lounge, and made sure I switched the TV off at the wall afterwards. Then I went on the internet......

Sorry, yet another post which started off being about one topic and ended up being about two.

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