I look at news coverage coming out of Syria today and am filled with despair at the destruction and waste. I wonder how these cities of grey concrete shells could ever become prosperous, thriving cities again. What is the point of it all? And yet, here in the Bible just the same sort of thing is described – the mass destruction of property and killing of people with no-one spared. If this is the lesson to be learned, how can we blame people from following the same path now? And yet it all feels so wrong to me. Are we not meant to be a compassionate society caring and helping others, not destroying them? Christmas having just past, a time for giving and sharing, a time for goodwill, should surely remind us all of this whether we ‘believe’ or not – belief certainly does not prevent people from celebrating Christmas (a subject I’m sure to return to later) so why should the pick and mix attitude to religion not apply to life in general.