Thoughtless advice

Come on dear celebrity community leader, think about your words! Yes, of course what really matters is our relationship with our Lord. Yes, of course we are not defined by qualifications and what we own.

But the generations of dropouts, layabouts and underachievers desperately need their spiritual guides to tell them that their GCSEs, A-Levels, Degrees, Post-Docs and — God Willing — secure employment at the end, can be acts of worship, if they enable the young man or woman to better serve others, whether friend or foe, family or stranger.

Our leaders should help us to aspire to the best in all realms, not just in the narrowly defined realm of spirituality. Perhaps that bright young graduate on obtaining a well paid job will give his wealth to the poor. Perhaps that successful surgeon will save lives. And perhaps the one who spends day and night in prayer, but cannot serve others, will gain nothing from his efforts but the benefits of aerobic exercise.

Our leaders need to do better than this. And they should be challenged when they offer thoughtless advice of this kind, however good their intentions.

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