Wednesday, 7 April 2010

Uncharted Territory

How often do we hear phrases like “follow me” or “trust me” or “I know what I am doing”? Familiar ways that are used to encourage us to overcome our concerns or issues and put our faith in someone or something, perhaps leaving our comfort zone and stepping out.

How good are we anyway at moving out of our comfort zones, the places where we feel safe and secure, inside our own little bubbles where we are in control and things work the way we want them too?

For many of us any change is difficult but to move to a place where we are well outside of our comfort and well into the red danger zone is pretty well impossible. But so often the real progress in life, the really big answers to the tough problems, the huge breakthroughs happen in just such times, when we are in those uncomfortable, challenging places. It is to these challenging places that Christians are called, the untidy, unpredictable world where things are not as we want them but in which we can, if we choose, make a huge difference. We are called to follow him as the Iona Hymn reminds us:

Will you come and follow me
if I but call your name?
Will you go where you don’t know
and never be the same?
Will you let my love be shown,
will you let my name be known,
will you let my life be grown
in you and you in me

Salt and light Jesus says of those that follow him, something that we already are so that we can light up, point the way, be noticed for being his people in a scary, unpredictable, untidy and yet God created world that he loves dearly. So dearly that the first Easter happened for us and each year is a reminder that God loves humanity and calls his people to love and engage with all, changing them not by being the biggest voice or project or whatever, but by being people who make a difference where they can.

Too often we Christians remain in our safe huddles, spending our energy seeking new forms of worship, preaching, songs and the latest ways of presenting our arguments. Yet we fear moving out of this into the uncharted territory of our communities where the salt needs to be tasted and the light needs to be seen. We can make Easter a present reality by following Christ into those uncharted lands.

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