It is hard to be in this space of politics. It has its own rules and its own ways of working, it isn’t for everyone, and sometimes it is better left to the professionals. But we cannot allow those who take the lead to feel unsupported or isolated. I am sure I am not alone here in thinking about the verse Exodus 17:12 When Moses’ arms grew tired, Aaron and Hur brought a stone for him to sit on, while they stood beside him and held up his arms, holding them steady until the sun went down.
Twenty years ago this week that Alastair Campbell famously said “We don’t do God”. On 5th May 2003 Tony Blair was giving an interview to Vanity Fair when his head of communications interrupted the interview with what was probably a throw away quip but it has gone down in history as a mantra to live by for many politicians.
Twenty years on, do politicians still not do God or have times changed?
Freedom of expression is key in our modern society and the freedom to wear symbols of our beliefs or causes that we support is also of paramount importance. No one can own or claim a colour to be their own, the gender critical movement do not own the suffragette colours, any more than the SNP own the saltire or Conservatives own the colour blue. To suggest such a thing is nonsense, and to exclude someone from public debate because they are wearing a particular colour is quite frankly outrageous.
Jesus offers a master class in compassionate leadership, underlined by the fact that the bible continues to be one of the highest-grossing books in the world (Guinness World Records, 2021). It is not surprising then that my view is that the church’s continued survival rests partly on its [albeit often painstakingly slow] ability to innovate.
So, echoing down through the ages, from the death and resurrection of Christ to the five stages model proposed by Elisabeth Kubler-Ross in the 1960s, right up 9/11 attacks in the early 2000s and upon the recent death of our most beloved Queen Elizabeth II, the enduring message is thus:
“Grief is the price we pay for love”
It looks like we are about to embark on a turbulent time for public sector workers. Strikes on our railways over the last few weeks and months, post office workers, waste operators all striking and more ballots happening every week.
Every church and every congregation in Scotland is likely to have someone who is facing the decision on whether to withdraw their labour or cross a picket line and continue to work.
Politicians are a funny breed (I should know as I was one and know lots). You have to be a certain kind of person to put yourself willingly through selection and an election campaign. Having your face on tens of thousands of leaflets, walk miles and miles delivering them, put yourself through local husting meetings, put yourself out there on social media, make speeches to rooms of people who disagree with you, only to lose very publicly, humiliatingly, and with crowds of people cheering your defeat – I’m not selling this am I…?
Over croissants and bacon rolls participants heard a sermon referencing Psalm 23, led by Rev Isaac who is the founder and CEO of Ascension Trust and also a pioneer of Street Pastors. Many politicians were there including all the main players in what is now a leadership race, one of them has said that it was this sermon that moved him to resign and effectively put the final nail in the coffin of Boris Johnson’s Prime Ministership.
For over a century modern global peace and security has been governed by a system of treaties and international agreements. Events like COP26 and organisations like the G8 give nations hope that by working together we can build a better world, and combat some of the global challenges that exist. These are founded on trust. Trust that nations will stick to their agreements, and trust that a change of Government in any nation will not affect that commitment.
Logos Scotland is a brand new think tank in Scotland. Set up by a group of like minded Christians we want to bring a new voice to the public sphere in Scotland. We are currently developing our website so check back regularly for updates.
Last week was a big week in the Scottish Parliament. Humza Yousaf delivered his first Programme for Government which sets out the proposed Bills and policies for the coming year for the SNP/Green coalition Government. We asked some of friends to tell us whet
her they think it will deliver for Scotland.