I've been asked to put together a thought for the day ... which in itself is no big deal.
The trick is, I've been asked to put together a thought for the day for a secular group on a staff away day. That's a little less straight forward, because I suddenly need to be aware of all sorts of policies about inclusivity and equality. I can't even poke fun at my faith, in case someone else takes offence at it. And so, here I sit, at 00h30 (after the pc crashed @ 00h10), none the wiser.
I thought perhaps I should say something briefly about the latest attempted bombings in Glasgow and London, addressing the dangers of extremists, using the name of religion to excuse their own violent agendas. But then thought that that was potentially rather meaty and depressing for 09h00 in the morning.
Then, I thought that perhaps I should address the issue of the whole rebalancing that the institution is undergoing, with several staff posts being designated as 'at risk', but that wouldn't be fair to them if they were there, and people would probably want to forget about it anyway.
There is, of course, the growing and desperately important problem of climate change and global warming, but as I have no answer - only tips - that's not that great an idea either.
Then I thought that perhaps those are all a bit dark and sombre first thing in the morning, anyway, and perhaps people need to relax and have a bit of a giggle, but as I mentioned above - it's difficult to know what you can joke about, without risking offending someone. I was going to read the opening chapter from 'The Bible According to Spike Milligan', but am not entirely convinced.
So, I'll mull it over a while longer, or maybe just head to bed, unconvinced and unprepared (I hate that).
What I did find, however, was a really nice blog or article from a reformed homophobe. Take a look at http://anitra.net/activism/glbt/sodom-essay.html . It's so refreshing to find someone that isn't gay, that acknowledges that they were wrong and helps promote the truth. It's a really good, thought-provoking and intelligent read, and I commend her. When it's not the middle of the night, I may write and thank her for her insights.
I give up ... if anyone has any suggestions on a "thought for the day" for a staff away day for people of mixed cultures and faiths in a secular institution, please comment below ... there are bound to be more (unless I make a royal cock-up of tomorrow, in which case I'm off the hook in the future).