Take some time…
Normally things kick off again in January with fresh energy and excitement, perhaps as people come back from the Christmas break ready to get going again, ready to make a fresh start, ready to get going with all those ideas they’ve been brewing.
You may have noticed that we haven’t done that here on the MC Blog yet. Partly that is down to my disorganization in preparing a new rota for our wonderful writers. Part of me wonders whether God is trying to say something, to catch my attention; to cause me just to stop and wait, and to reflect and take note of a few things before we launch headlong into a new year of blogging.
Maybe sometimes we need to do that with our lives and our Missional Communities. To take stock a little longer than we usually might, to reflect on what has gone before and properly give thanks to God for all that has been. When the Israelites heard the Book of the Law read to them for the first time since the rebuilding of the Temple and the walls of Jerusalem, they worshipped, wept and celebrated:
“the people went away to eat and drink at a festive meal, to share gifts of food, and to celebrate with great joy because they had heard God’s words and understood them.” (Nehemiah 8:12)
They then celebrated the Festival of Shelters for 7 days and a short time later they stood for 3 hours listening again to the Book of the Law and then a further 3 hours repenting and worshipping the Lord. They then committed together to carefully follow all the commands, regulations and decrees of the Lord.
Only after all this did they then go and occupy the rebuilt city of Jerusalem. I wonder if this situation happened in our time, in our ‘now’ culture, whether many of us would have just rushed into occupying the city, into the doing of life, before fully taking time to reflect, to remember God’s goodness and allow time for that to happen before recommitting ourselves to wholeheartedly following what God says? I know I probably would.
Perhaps it’s ok to take a little longer, to not rush in…maybe to linger in the presence of the new-born King and the wonder of Incarnation, and everything God has done in the previous 12 months before rushing into the occupying of 2013.
Normal service will resume on this blog next week but for now perhaps carve out a bit of extra time to reflect on the last season, then to listen for the words God wants to speak into this new one.
- Are there prophetic words you need to come back to again and further reflect on and dig into before carrying on?
- Instead of pressing on with new plans for your MC do you / your community need just a little longer to pause and to listen carefully to God and his voice, and to what He wants to say to you about the next year?
- Can we be counter-cultural and wait just a little longer than is perhaps comfortable for us in order to ‘hear God’s words and understand them?”
For me right now God seems to be giving me some gifts of time to use to wait before Him before I really get going with this year, a year which I know will have many challenges ahead. What about you?
Helen Askew lives in Deal, Kent along with her two young children and husband Ben who is training for ordination. She works for St George’s Church with responsibility for everyone under 30 & also helps to coordinate Missional Communities. They lead an MC for young adults, are working to establish youth MCs and also work with 3DM UK from time to time!