Tuesday, 6 December 2016

Navigating Change

One of the challenges facing today's church is the need to change. We recognise the need. We say we are ready to do it. BUT .... Well, it is easier said than done. It is a point well recognised by Steven Croft in his book Jesus' People: What the Church should do next.

He comments on the need to challenge the negativity in which we, too often, get caught. We think and say that we can't. We see what needs to be done, but claim it is beyond us. As Croft puts it: "Eeyore is alive and well in many congregations, synods and pressure groups. In the last of the Narnia stories C. S. Lewis paints a compelling picture of a group of dwarves who are admitted to the great banquet at the end of time but they can neither see nor taste the good things because of their own cynicism and despair. It's not hard to find similar groups in the councils of the Church. But they need to be challenged." (p. 6)

Croft emphasises the need to look to Jesus, commenting on how that will keep us on course - "It is Jesus who gives the Church its DNA, its genetic code. While the Church may need to take a variety of shapes as our culture changes, it will be on course providing we discern that the risen Christ is at the centre." (p. 8)

He suggests that we are inclined to be too like the disciples caught in a storm on the lake, failing to look to Jesus. We get on with stuff, but we don't allow ourselves to be resourced as we can and should be. We try, but not in the right way. Croft suggests that we are like "the disciples, in danger of drowning in Lake Galilee - they don't waste time and energy blaming one another; they do what they can from their own resources, but in the end that isn't enough. At that point and only at that point they turn their attention to Jesus. Isn't it time for us to do the same?" (p. 10/1)

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