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Faith Comment published in the Petersfield Post

19 March 2014: Jon Piper, Hope Church

Angry Dads Not Allowed

I've been a slightly angry dad this evening. I've become very tired and have, as a consequence, found it very difficult to deal with those things that would usually constitute 'irritating niggles', such as untargeted moaning about homework or excessive eating noises.

This tiredness comes as a direct consequence of my over-committing to demanding activities.

I'm training for the Brighton Marathon on 6th April. I'll have run something like 400 miles since the start of the year by the time this paper is published. I'm meant to be raising money for Christian Solidarity Worldwide, but have not shown the fundraising prowess that I'd hoped for.

Another of my activities is my involvement in the Mark Drama: the Biblical book of Mark in play form, which is being performed by Hope Church on 22nd March at St Peter's Church. I am playing Jesus. This has required some serious time spent learning lines.

As I've learnt the script, I have basically been placing a jigsaw of lines and phrases that I already know into context in my memory. Jesus' phrases about two people becoming one person in marriage (paraphrased in the Spice Girls' song) precede his shocking (for the first century) injunction to be accepting of children, which is followed by his advice to the rich man to:

'Go and sell everything you have, and give the money to the poor.'

Jesus' constant refrain that has led me to reflect is that he is deeply interested in how we live in relationship with the people around us. It's no good pretending to be a great person - whether Christian or not - if you can't care for your spouse, your children, the poor, the other people in your life.

All of which means I should probably try to be a slightly less angry dad...

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