Friday, 21 December 2007

A quote for Christmas

Here's a great quote that has made me think today....

But for the rest of us, forced to ponder the complexity of our existence and the competing implausibilities of faith and unbelief, that was surely the point of the manger, the stable, the ox and the ass. That God would choose to come among us in such a way so strange, so inexplicable, so unbelieveable, it compels us to believe.
Gerard Baker
(The Times 23.12.07)


Thursday, 20 December 2007


Vision is a funny thing. I think I can often overcomplicate this vision thing. Maybe this is why I have been hearing the Lord saying time and again 'keep it simple... stupid.' My vision is supposed to be his vision but too often it is merely my vision. My vision often can be presented and couched in such ways that it sounds really great and convincing but when it comes down to it lacks authenticity and therefore after varying amounts of time (during which there may be some signs of success) dies away to nothing. My vision needs to be allowed to fall to the ground and die - because from the death of my vision comes life.

I have found myself drawn to isolating the simple basics of vision the Lord has given me here:
Cultivate a tent mentality
Simply live, love and lead like Jesus
Build a community of communities

That's a fair amount to go on!

Thursday, 6 December 2007

Jesus' teachings are not complex & easy but simple and hard

So, it all feels a bit complex. I'm looking for easy solutions thinking 'how can I solve the problems I face'?
I've got a church with no building, a people who want to go but don't quite know where to go (hey, but wanting to go is half the battle). A vision and strategy that runs out in 2008 so a new vision needed! Many of the trappings of English church life and a mixture of forced change (building not suitable for worship) and chosen change (a decision to worship in HGS).
Oh, and there are people wondering if God is calling them to join us and others hearing God's call to 'go' and getting a vision and pursuing it. Then there is the issue of managing the change, supporting great things already happening... Oh and did I mention the other small matter of another church I have responsibility for and the need to lead them to a decision regarding their building and where and how they are to live and worship as a community in the meantime and into the future?
No wonder 2 months in I feel like collapsing in a corner and becoming an introvert for a while!
Well, lets resist the temptation of that corner for a moment. Things seem incredibly complex and our instinct is to hunt for the magic wand that will solve it all - that's the easy and frankly impossible way (mind you, I reach for that magic wand all the time!) The way of Jesus lets us off from seeking a magic wand to flourish at our complex problems. Instead we are called to the radical simplicity of the kingdom way which contains hard things (what could be more counter-cultural than simply living like Jesus?) and a simple approach - love like Jesus, live like Jesus and lead like Jesus.
There are many things that are complex, that present me with problems that come over as intractable. But I am actually called to a change of mind - to see the simple and knuckle down to the hard way but actually what amounts to the best way.