Every five years or so the British Adventist church publishes an evangelistic magazine called Focus. This year they asked me to write an article about why I am an Adventist. That’s a very hard question, and the best answer I could come up with is ‘I like to believe that there’s a God.’ That was a good summary of my position. As the weird post-postmodern person that I am, I don’t really attach any important if there is actually a God. I don’t want to know if there is a God. All of this is the wrong question. I, personally, think my life is better if I believe in God, so I like to believe in him.
Working from this basic tenet, I wrote a 1500 word article about this. I honestly thought that this would be too risqué for publication, but the British Church surprised me. Maybe this is why they asked me, maybe they saw that if we want to reach contemporary people, we need to start allowing unorthodox thinking. Whatever the case, today I got my copy of the magazine and am proud of the British Church for sticking its neck out.
At the moment I am recovering from the fact that I am on the cover as well. Putting that aside, I am rather honoured to have my words put in print. The introduction and title have been made more appealing in an advertising-y, clickbait-y kind of way, but that’s fair enough. The essence is the same: some thoughts on the usefulness of faith.
To whet your appetite, here is what you might call my manifesto of faith:
I don’t go to church so that I will go to heaven. I’m not even convinced that I want to go there. I don’t have a list of things I must and mustn’t do. I don’t get into arguments with people about creation or evolution. I don’t tell teenage girls that God will be sad if they get an abortion. And I certainly don’t force my views on anyone else.
Yes, I have views and opinions. I like to believe that there is a God. I like to believe that that God created me, and the rest of the world. I like to think that God holds all life sacred, and hates it when we are hurt. I like to think that some choices are better than others.
Download the article here. If you want a copy in print, I understand you can order it from the Adventist Book Centre. By calling +44 1476 591700 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.