Saturday, 18 September 2010

Getting firmly established

Those who regularly read this blog (sorry for the lack of updating recently), or are connected with Kairos in any way will know that we are in a significant transition. 3 years on and we are moving an established Church of England church into a network of missional communities - a community of communities. At time of writing we have 6 mission shaped communities - MSCs - all functioning in different ways developing at different paces. What an adventure!
Recently I have been thinking about what it takes to become firmly established.... that is not just being in existence but living life to the full. King Solomon's life is worth looking at. In 1 Kings 2 we find him taking on the kingship from his father David. David gives Solomon some instruction and in effect the kingdom to rule. At the end of this passage it says "So Solomon sat on the throne of his father David, and his rule was firmly established" (2:12). Solomon then goes and does what David has told him and right at the end of the chapter we hear these words; "The kingdom was now firmly established in Solomon's hands" (2:46b) - it seems to me that if we are to become 'firmly established' we need to understand the dynamic of being established in 2 ways as Solomon was. First he received the crown, from his Father he gained the right to rule. We get a 'crown', a right to rule, as we come to Christ and pledge ourselves to follow him. We gain our identity as children of God, people he is pleased to give the kingdom to. This right to rule, however, has to turn into the action of reigning. Just as Solomon had to follow his father's instructions, so do we. We have to do everything Jesus commanded (Matt 28) - that is the action that will enable us to become established. 
What we are looking for in those leading MSCs, well basically in all disciples, is a clear sense of their 'right to rule' and a willingness to take the appropriate action even if it is challenging and costly. 
What it seems that Solomon learned is that a combination of wisdom from above (what do you want asks God.... wisdom please says Solomon 3:5-6) and humility from below (I am only a little child 3:7) was the way to function and not only was his rule and reign established but it was also fruitful. Two qualities I look for in followers of Jesus are humility and the ability to go to God for wisdom. Humility and wisdom are clearly interlinked throughout scripture - let's take them seriously.

No comments: