the word, according to 252

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Here’s a few mini-talks designed to create a bit of intrigue or a bit of a challenge.

This one’s a bit old, but not bad. BGT

I am not ashamed to say that I watch Britain’s Got Talent. It’s a joy to behold so many people who own some quite remarkable, often unique and bizarre, talents. In many other cases, I can only guess that the title is intended as an irony – but it entertains nonetheless. One recent example was a man from Dunfermline attempting to break a Guinness World Record. What was the world record in question? To eat as many Ferrero Rocher chocolates in one minute as possible. How many would be a record? My guess was maybe 30. Possibly 40? The record holder is Jim Lyngvild, a Dane, who managed 7 in one minute. 7? Surely that isn’t that impressive?! I thought that we might truly witness a new world record being set. It would have put Dunfermline on the map (however, anyone who has been there would probably agree it’s better left off the map)! Alas our plucky Scottish hero managed only 4. I bet you’re thinking “I could do better than that” and you’re probably right. But it is more difficult than it seems, trust me!

Josh Anderson, a New Zealander, owns the world record for eating a 12” pizza in 1min 45.37sec. Take my word for it, that’s really quick! Ken Edwards of Glossop, Derbyshire, ate 36 cockroaches in 1min. I leave that one up to you to try and beat! Nico Surings of Eindhoven, Netherlands, owns the record for running 100m barefoot on ice – 17.35 sec. Impressive, although I’m sure if you or I discovered that we were barefoot on ice, we’d be able to run pretty fast too! The world is full of people with incredible talent. For some the most incredible thing must have been discovering that they had these talents in the first place. How do you discover that you may be the person who could jump the furthest on a pogo stick? Or that you can sit in a bathtub with 87 rattlesnakes for 45 minutes?!

As impressed as I am with these world record holders – if not for the achievements then for the inventiveness at least – I can’t put any stock in them. Their feats are worthy of note in the book of world records, but don’t make them extraordinary people. If one of them said “stop, drop all that you are doing, and follow me” I’m not sure I’d take any notice. They do not have the backing of any real authority. Yet Jesus, so the Bible accounts tell us, said to Simon, Andrew, James and John these words and they went with him, leaving jobs and families behind. If all that Jesus did was to do things that impressed people, surely these men would have equally taken no notice. So what made Jesus different? I’m pretty sure the first miracle Jesus did (turning water into wine at a wedding in Cana) would have got him through to the second round of Britain’s Got Talent. If all he did was to perform these miracles, he would have gone down in history as a great entertainer, but nothing more. If all he did was to teach morality and preach sermons, he would be acknowledged as one of the great classical thinkers, but not anything greater. If all he did was to die on a cross at Easter he would be condemned to the history books as a heretic, an insurrectionist, a common criminal. The fact is that all of the people who followed Jesus were willing to be tortured, and even killed for their belief that Jesus was something far greater than this. A belief held so strongly that nothing, not even their own lives, mattered as much.

So what made Jesus different? I’m not going to tell you the answer; you need to work that one out for yourself…

two5two

Written by two5two

December 2, 2010 at 4:33 pm

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