Thoughts from a busy couple of days…
First up would have to be God’s provision…you see, two days ago I got a phone call from the school where we were hoping to hold our summer camp for 13-21yr olds saying they couldn’t take us anymore…talk about a jaw dropping moment! First reaction – panic. Second reaction – more panic – third…pick up the phone and do something. And of course, pray! So we prayed…and God did the business – another school (different date tho) same town, cheaper…not much more I could ask. God is good!
I have the privilege of meeting up with a guy who’s my ‘support officer’ on a monthly basis…thing is, he’s not a Salvation Army officer, but an expert in youthwork. We have some really interesting discussions about everything and anything. Today, we ranged from theology (liberalism vs fundamentalism) and understanding how we ‘tame’ performance to be something useful in youth ministry. Helped me think through what I want to do with our regional youth gathering in March. Basically, it should unapologetically be about people getting together to hang out, worship, and maybe even get something from the preach…if we’re lucky! We need our youth to connect with each other. From there, the relationships will develop that will sustain spiritual growth and so on….or that’s how I think it might work.
Finally, been challenged by Carl Baker’s writings on The Salvation Army’s heart for social justice. Have a read (http://carlonline.blogspot.com). He’s been reading the same stuff from the Old Testament as me! I’m convinced that this is our purpose, that which God created us for. Not so we could get all proud and claim to be ‘God’s commandos’ or anything, but so that we could devote ourselves to the people in the world who suffer incredible injustice. Not just cos we want our church to grow…which would be great, of course….but because it’s God’s heart – and when we show people the unconditional love of the father some will spit in our face, but others will want to know why we do it. Sounds so simple doesn’t it…yet so costly. Bonhoeffer and his ‘The Cost of Discipleship’ is still making me think. Costly grace – something free from God which requires wholesale surrender of our will and means becoming fools to the rest of the world. Lots indeed to think about.