Life After Brexit

whitley 2012

 

 

 

 

 

The local church is perfectly positioned and equipped to help bring peace and to defragment our communities after Brexit:

Stop Fear Say Hello

 

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His Full Reward

I have been thinking more specifically about Jesus’ inheritance. The bible speaks about the nations being his inheritance. It also speaks about the joy set before him and the reward he receives for his suffering and death on the cross in our place. At the end of his time on earth, after his resurrection, he announces that he now has all authority in heaven and on earth; he then commissions his disciples to go and make disciples of the nations. To be a disciple of Jesus is to know him and learn his ways so we can live according to his ways; this is a beautiful thing, it’s the restoration of things to the Creators design and according to Jesus commission, whole nations can experience this, not just individuals. And when they and we do, Jesus is receiving his inheritance.

When we experience as individuals, as communities and even nations, all that Jesus’ death and suffering made available for us….. that experience is Jesus’ reward. When you receive forgiveness, when your friend receives healing, when your sister finds that deep rest in God; when any part of our lives becomes actively redeemed by Jesus… this is his reward. He delights in our salvation, in our peace, in our wholeness, in our restoration to relationship with the Father; it makes his suffering worthwhile, it’s why he died, it is the joy that was set before him.

Jesus inheritance and the reward for his suffering and death is the salvation and shalom, body, soul and spirit of every individual and nation. We get to participate in making sure that he receives his full reward, by pressing in to all that he has made available to us AND by leading our friends, communities and society back to him. Amazing!

His Chosen Inheritance

I have recently been blown away by the fact that you and I are God’s inheritance and he is ours.

He chose us before he even created the world, to be his inheritance. We are his chosen inheritance, he wants you and me! I just find that amazing. And so the story since then is about the lengths to which he goes to make sure he receives his inheritance. He knew that sin would mess things up and destroy us, his inheritance, so he dealt with sin himself so that he could still be with us. But it’s never been a given, he gave us free will so that we could choose not to be with him, so we could choose not to be his inheritance, but his intention is quite clear.

And that’s not all, as his inheritance, he chose to give us an inheritance… he chose to make us heirs of all that he is. In order for this to work and be a permanent thing, he made sure that we could become his actual sons and daughters, part of the family, not just servants or even friends. Only then would the inheritance he has for us be ours, forever. What is that inheritance? Again, it’s him, himself and all that he has. His presence and indwelling with us by Holy Spirit is just a deposit – o my goodness – there’s so much more to come and I know that I certainly haven’t learnt to walk in the fullness of life with Holy Spirit now. Amazing!

So yes, we are the Father’s inheritance and he is ours.

‘Lord You alone are my inheritance, my cup of blessing…. the land you have given me is a pleasant land, what a wonderful inheritance!’ PS16:5&6

Transforming Neighbourhoods: Discipling Communities.

Last Saturday we had the 11th annual South Reading Churches Fun Day with an estimated 5000 community members in attendance. It was just fabulous watching people move from being spectators to participators and having a whale of a time! It had me reminiscing about the different communities where I have helped facilitate community building festivals; across South Africa, northern Ghana, Kaduna in Nigeria, Trench Town in Jamaica… to mention just a few.

In each of these communities there are local people plugging away using various programs as ways to mentor others. On Sunday night I caught up with Derrick Trout who leads the work in South Africa, he had had a roller coaster week. When you are working to see your community transformed there are times of incredible breakthrough and encouragement, and there are times when you wonder if it’s all worthwhile. Communities are transformed when paradigms shift and people make different life choices, lives are changed and the very systems and structures of the community are renewed: that’s no small feat!

Jesus called us to make disciples of all people teaching them to live the way he taught; this is what he was talking about – it’s not just about working to see individuals find freedom, it’s about seeing whole communities and societies transformed.

Jesus came declaring that there was a new king on the throne whose rule was now paramount; God himself was now king. This meant that there was a different way of doing life that was all about harmonising with the will of the new King. The implications were for individuals, families, politicians, leaders, and society as a whole. To prove the reality of this new Kingdom, Jesus embarked in a systematic demolition of the kingdom of darkness. Everywhere he went God’s rule overturned and reversed every form of death, darkness and destruction. And once his part of the mission was completed, he sent us out to continue the same.

In fellowship with local believers, every Fusion team in each community they operate asks ‘What does the will of the King look like here? What works of death and darkness are to be overturned here?’. The answers to these questions are then born out in a long haul journey punctuated by events and programs, seasons of fruitfulness and of dearth. There are moments of celebration and moments when, like Jesus, we cry out in exasperation ‘How long must I bear with you?!’. But all the while individuals, families, politicians and leaders, and even society as a whole are being challenged and mentored in a different way of doing life. This is community transformation!

A Fusion Community building Festival is just one small microcosm of this transformation taking place…

So let us not grow weary in doing good, but keep going, because in due time we will see the harvest! This Saturday morning Fusion Y&C UK is running a training event to equip leaders and laity alike for the long haul journey of discipling communities and seeing our neighbourhoods transformed. Each of the 5 workshops is about declaring the rule of the King and demolishing the kingdom of darkness in a particular sphere. Why not join us if you can? Click here to find out more.