This blog was first written by Mike in 2012. As we approach the most important election in the UK in living history, we’ve done a bit of rewind and edit to publish it again.

It may have a more specific meaning these days – am I right or wrong?
Anyway, in the literal 2-state sense, today I am going to become binary. Why?
1. Because computers use binary and they can multitask – I can’t.
2. Because software uses binary, and it’s efficient – I’m not.
3. Because you either have to be Remain or Brexit, the only thing that matters in the world obviously

So, binary being a 2-state system, I’ll just use my version of emoticons

👍 When I am happy or agree with something,
👎 When I’m unhappy or disagree with something,

So, Boro have gone 2-0 up against Hull last Sunday 👍
Oh, we’ve had a men sent off and conceded 2 goals 👎

I’m listening to Booker T and the MGs 👍
I’m listening to Paul McCartney, who should now be singing in Care homes 👎

Volunteer Weeks were SO fantastic – so much brilliant work done 👍
Erm, we seem to have yet another 100s of Euros water leak, not covered on insurance it would appear…. (actually this is regrettably true)👎

Yep, I’ve got this cracked, my life will be so good now I’ve become Binary. OK, Here we go, now I’m Binary, I can invent catchy day-glo car stickers – hows about
“If your life isn’t prayer-shaped, it’s gonna be pear-shaped” ©MJ 2019.
Buoyed by success, erm, lets try,
“Booking seats for the afterlife sir? would that be Smoking or non-Smoking?”
But now I’ve become binary, I have a problem. I am trying to live my life prayer-shaped”, but in certain areas, the reality is that I would say it’s pretty “pear shaped”

Also, how can I even think about “booking seats for the afterlife” when the story I find myself in today seems to be both heavenly and hellish on occasions. Somehow, I need to broaden my thinking when either my own or others pressure asks me to go on one side or the other.

It isn’t, either/or, it’s both/and.

The problem with yes/no, true/false, good/bad, is that it can divide and separate. And even more dangerous, is that we only see through the ‘lens’ we have at the time, that may well be misted up, clouded, ‘we see through a glass darkly’
So, in the spirit of both/and, binary isn’t ‘bad’, it’s just not enough – it’s just a starting point.

I need to learn to ‘see’ things differently. Often that will be listening ‘deeply’ to others, hearing beyond the words that we are hearing. Sometimes, that will mean stepping back, acknowledging the paradox and contradictions I’m seeing, and asking God to help me see it ‘in a different light’.

In John’s Gospel, we read that the darkness could not overcome the light. But my experience is that darkness is never wholly overcome. CS Lewis called this world ‘the Shadowlands’. It’s part of life that darkness and light seem to exist together in lots of situations. I think I need to accept that and learn to grow through it.

Today, maybe I won’t be totally binary – after all, I’m a human being, not a digital ‘doing‘ device, and I’m quite pleased about that. 👍