Revgals preacher party today about the early church as described in Acts - that it wasn't a community where everything was great but rather a Christian response to difficult times. That idea of the church pulling together in response to hardship is one that is particularly haunting me. Locally we seem content to immerse ourselves in what is negative and dispiriting, often overlooking all that is positive and affirming. And, nationally, rather than allow the love of Christ to triumph and to have the final say, we worry away at threads until we've got an unravelled mess to contend with.
The example of the Christian church in Acts, a church under persecution is a picture of folk, in love, doing what they could, occupying themselves with what was, and is, important - clothing the poor, feeding the hungry, loving one another. Creating God's kingdom on earth. Living the gospel instead of merely alluding to it now and again.