Thursday, 16 July 2009


The ancient greek word kairos means the right or opportune moment - kairos is special time or an appointed time in the purpose of God. We need to be ready to respond to kairos moments - seeking to learn what the Lord is teaching us, what he is doing and revealing.

Last night I met with members of Harrogate Deanery (the CofE way of organising groups of local churches and their parishes). This was a kairos. I presented the 'What was, what is and what is to come' of St Mary's Harrogate for consultation. The meeting was very good natured and open. Inevitably there are a range of understandings and comprehension of something that is so different from the normal way of doing church. I was really encouraged to hear those that would often be imagined to be a million miles away from the kind of thing we are doing saying a resounding and enthusiastic 'yes' and offering support. I was struck by the oddness of watching others discussing the parts of St Mary's parish that their parish might take over - there is so much security in the CofE in regards to having a distinctive parish - 'my patch' - and having recognised authority over it and here we were in the act of laying it down, giving away security in exchange for an uncertain future, a new way. A kairos moment. I have found myself looking at the sending out of the 12 in Mark 6 again -
"These were his instructions: 'Take nothing for the journey except a staff - no bread, no bag, no money in your belts. Wear sandals but not an extra tunic'"
They were sent with so little security - just each other, his teaching & authority, a staff, tunic and sandals. How they must have felt... so vulnerable.

There is so much we could take for the journey we are on - but the work of the Lord in the life of this church seems to be so much more about us taking nothing for the journey.

Are we ready to meet the challenge of this? Or are we going to continually insist on taking stuff with us that will hold us back, slow us down? Part of the stripping away of securities that is happening for us is the continued adjustment to laying down larger gatherings in favour of smaller groupings/communities. We can lean on Sunday services or the way we have always done things and find that we go nowhere fast. No. We are needing to learn what it is to be people who take nothing for the journey except that which we find the Lord telling us to take.

I shared my feelings and reflections regarding all this with a friend in the Order of Mission. She sent me the encouragement of Galatians 3:26-4:7 just what I/we need in these times to be reminded of:

"You are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus, for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ. There is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for you are all one in Christ Jesus. If you belong to Christ, then you are Abraham's seed, and heirs according to the promise.
What I am saying is that as long as the heir is a child, he is no different from a slave, although he owns the whole estate. He is subject to guardians and trustees until the time set by his father. So also, when we were children, we were in slavery under the basic principles of the world. But when the time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under law, to redeem those under law, that we might receive the full rights of sons. Because you are sons, God sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out, "Abba, Father." So you are no longer a slave, but a son; and since you are a son, God has made you also an heir."
At times like this I/we need to return to an understanding of who we are in Him. I am a Son and Heir - clothed with Christ. I have the full rights of a son of our Father in heaven. Be encouraged!

1 comment:

James S said...

I'm very challenged and encouraged by all this . . . unsure what to do with the challenge though (if that makes sense).