There are so many books out there about finding Christ in stillness, and in silence. I reckon there ought to be a few more about finding Christ in the busyness. Because sometimes our lives are busy, and sometimes it’s hard to find the space that we feel need, and it’s no use adding guilt to the stresses and burdens of the working week. As I look back over the past few days it has been a very busy time, but I have sensed that in each activity Christ has been present in all kinds of ways.
It started on Monday with one church council meeting. We had a really useful discussion about the situation in the wider Anglican church. One day soon I will blog about the organisations to which I belong which are seeking to uphold an evangelical witness in the Church of England. We all agreed that the main thing was to be faithful and to keep on with our work preaching the gospel.
Tuesday I was involved in many different events from deanery synod, to a governors’ meeting, to Songs of Praise, to a wedding rehearsal. It was good in the middle of it all to stop and pray at St Barnabas, finding that still centre in the midst of a crowded diary. I have realised this week more than ever how much I am borne on the prayers of others, and for this I am so immensely grateful.
Wednesday morning I finished my sermon for the following Sunday, which always take a great weight off my mind. I am constantly amazed how the Lord helps me find the right words even and especially when the pressure’s on! Then to the coffee morning, not so many as we sometimes get, but some useful conversations. Next, a lunch with the other Devonport church leaders and it feels like we are really gelling in prayer and planning for events together. In the evening, another PCC meeting. This time we were looking at issues to do with growth, and we are starting to get structures in place which will help to release people’s gifts and ministries.
Thursday was meant to be a quieter day, a visitor in the morning, and Holy Communion in the afternoon. That was before the e-mail which asked us to host our friends from Kenya! Somehow all the last minute arrangements came together (why should I be so surprised at the way the Lord works!?) and many more people came on a Thursday afternoon than I imagined. And above all we were refreshed by our visitors and a fresh realisation that we are part of a growing, vibrant worldwide church. Bishop Gideon reminded us of the need for revival and his message for us was, “Keep it up!”
Friday should have been my day off, but there was a wedding at St Michael’s in the afternoon. I always enjoy taking weddings, and the fact so many people helped to set up the day before helped immensely. But when I got home I had to arrange a funeral visit for a sad and totally unexpected death – a reminder again of the immense privilege of being called to share in situations of both great sadness and joy.
So today at the end of this week a funeral visit to a family of a lady I knew well. Maybe not the way you’d chose to end the week, you might say, but to me, it serves as a reminder of the reason why we do all the stuff we do in Christ’s name. We have a real hope in Jesus, and whether it’s a funeral visit, or a church council meeting, or a coffee morning, or any of the other myriad activities that go on in church, it all stems from the one historical fact of the empty tomb years ago which guarantees that one day we too shall share in Christ’s resurrection.
Maybe that’s how you find Christ in the busyness then, by reminding yourself in each and every event of the hope that you have, and that you have been called to share in His eternal life. Realising that puts everything into a new dimension, and I believe you start to see what really matters.