Tonight I got treble booked.
I could either go and give a presentation to give to a bunch of lay ministers.
Or the Church would have liked me to have gone to their District Council meeting.
Or we are also trying to create a regular presence in Weatherspoons (a local Pub) every Wednesday night.
Which one to do?
All of them have good reasons to go and all of them also have the potential not to be that fruitful either, which to go for?
Also, I think we have all done something we think is really important and have been let down by someone with an excuse we think is pretty poor, which can be annoying too.
How do we make those good choices?
What are our priorities?
What are our motives?
Do we choose things from a Kingdom perspective or one of personal preference?
At yesterdays book club we spoke about Jesus “only doing what he saw the Father doing” and the passage about our works being tested by fire (either being burned up or being purified in the fire).
As I thought about this I was reminded of a story of two people at Church, one was very into green issues and would talk about stewardship of the planet, another lady was very much into the local community, preserving jobs and very into buying local from local traders. They had a robust discussion (these kind of ladies are too posh to have barnies!) about getting their milk. The one who was into the local community economy had it delivered each day as it provided jobs and wasn’t being bought in Tesco, the other lady was horrified at the carbon footprint the milkman made delivering milk each day.
Both were lovely Christian people, and both wanted their faith to impact their choices, yet their world view was very different and so their priorities were different, I don’t think either was wrong, I think both was honoring to Jesus because ultimately their heart was to bless and make a positive difference.
Tonight I went to the lay readers training, as a couple of guys were going to JD Weatherspoons (a pub) tonight and the Church meeting had a good number of people who could be trusted to ensure that things are done to advance the Kingdom and treat people with love…
Did I make the right choice? I think so, and even if I got it wrong, I believe God sees the heart and knows I wanted to be in the most fruitful place, and I believe that that in itself blesses God.
Thomas Merton said:
“But I believe that the desire to please you does in fact please you.
And I hope I have that desire in all that I am doing.
I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire”.
I’ll close with Paul’s Prayer in Philippians.
“And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight, 10 so that you may be able to discern what is best and may be pure and blameless for the day of Christ, 11 filled with the fruit of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ – to the glory and praise of God. Amen”.