Sign-up for free e-newsletter

Viewpoint from Matt Gooch 08/04/11

Matt Gooch, Director, Unite Youth Project
Peanuts should be banned
MattGoochWebWell that's what I think anyway! The idea of crunching on one of these disgusting little things just turns my stomach; I hate them! However, that is about the only food I really hate. What about you? What are those things you just can't bear to even put in your mouth? I wonder if, like me there are some things that you hate the idea of but you’ve never even tried. I was in my mid teens when I first tried mushrooms. I thought they looked and smelt horrid and there was no way they were going anywhere near me. However, after being convinced to try them, they became one of my favourite foods. I heard another story recently of someone who wouldn't ever try curry because of the look of it but now it is her favourite food too
Many of us will have completed our census forms recently and will have come across “that” question. Yep, the “faith” one. There has been a lot of debate about this question with some people saying that the question isn't relevant or that it implies things it shouldn't. For me, I was pleased that it was there. I am quite sure what I believe and as a Christian my faith is very important to me and I love the taste of it, but for so many others faith is just something that is never even considered
dove left
When was the last time you really asked yourself the question “What do I believe?”, “Could there be a God?” or “What does is it really mean to be a Christian?” It can be so easy to be put off considering a faith for ourselves, because we don't like what we see. Perhaps it’s because the reputation some Christians have, or their portrayal in the media, or maybe the fact that religion seems to be the root of so many wars, or perhaps you just can’t understand why God allows suffering. However, could it be the case that if you were to give God a look for yourself that you could love the taste too? Is it possible that your assumptions about Christians are misguided? Could church actually have something to offer you?Dove right
I hope the census will give us great statistics and information but I also hope that it will have given us the chance to ask ourselves the question: “So what do I believe then?”
It is this issue in part that motivates me to do what I do, ie to lead a Christian youth project. We spend our time working with young people, encouraging them, helping them deal with life and also talking about the Christian faith. It might be easy for some people to think that we are trying to convert people or even brainwash them. But the truth is, I want young people to be informed of the Christian faith and to understand that Christians believe God can, and does, transform lives. However, the choice has to be with them and us individually. Surely we all need to know what we are accepting or rejecting rather than just thinking that we do
Imagine if you had the best tasting ice cream known to mankind - wouldn't you just be desperate for others to taste it. There is a verse in the book of Psalms that sums it up for me, “Taste and see that the Lord is good”


Tia (Guest) 12/04/2011 07:30
I wonder what motivated us as children?

More importantly, I wonder what motivates our children.
As parents/guardians, our children should motivate us.
Perhaps we should look at the world through their eyes and ask ourselves whether we have placed our children under too much pressure, too quickly.

Children are our most valuable possession (if that's the right word) but only for a short time. We have such a responsibility when raising children and we should try and bring out the very best in them, but in order to do that, we have to give them informed choices.

Our present society can encourage our children to emulate celebrity.
Newspapers and magazines give them a wrong impression of what being a responsible adult means.

Maybe we should ask ourselves, what would be the worst crime your child could commit?
Would you blame yourself?
Would you bear their punishment?
But through all this, would would you still love them?
Of course you would.

Jesus loved us so much, He died for us.
He took our sins to the Cross so we wouldn't have to pay.
And He did that because to Him, we are still his children.

He thought children were the absolute best, and He was right.
Children can give our lives colour and meaning.

So let us motivate our children.
Let's give them our best.