Thursday, March 11, 2021


I am not looking for a pew to sit down and settle into. The Kingdom of God does not have retirement presentations. I just did not expect the leadership opportunities that have come my way to have come my way. Once upon a time I might have craved a lectern and a sermon to preach, but it’s not so urgent now. I want to be useful, to keep spending myself, but I let other make the decision of how I do that.

Being invited into a leadership role meant that I was also invited to the training sessions. If I am to be entrusted with leading people into a deeper relationship with God, then I need to show that I am heading there myself. I can’t lead anyone if I am not going anywhere myself. I am entrusted with a group of people, to not spend an hour with them inn a Bible study, but to engage with them on a journey that is an everyday journey. It encompasses not just what we read in the Bible and the quality of our prayer lives, but other stuff too, like the struggles of adapting to laser eye surgery and the challenge of new glasses. It is daily life and how it is lived.

This morning I was reading about strong towers and refuges and ho, when the days of disaster come, we have somewhere to run to, a place of escape for a while. We don’t build our house there and live there for the rest of our lives, but we take time out to right ourselves and recover before heading back out to the battle.

I wrote this in my morning notes – ‘I am wondering if, in my troubles, I am actually doing anything to run anywhere safe. Am I not often standing still like a rabbit caught in the headlights?

It occurred to me that I am setting an example for others to follow, especially if I am in a leadership role. People look at what others are doing or not doing and take their cue from them. If the day of trouble catches up with me, God is expecting me to use the refuge He has given me. He is not looking for a hero to be out there, inn a battle they have no business fighting anyway, when what is required is retreat to safety. God is expecting me to use His refuge so that others will use it too.  St Paul told people in his letters to imitate him. Imitation is how people learn. It doesn’t matter whether I can confidently tall people to imitate me – they will anyway. I just need to make sure that I am worth imitating.


I am waiting for
The bugle that sounds a retreat
Permission to take refuge
And wait out the enemy’s attack

But I am too proud to admit
That the enemy has me on the run
The call has been sounded

What does this say
About my refuge?
That it cannot take a battering ram?
Or survive a siege?

Mine is a strong tower
Set on a mighty rock
Secure from every foe

The problem lies not
with the tower and its defences
But with my flawed definition of
A day of disaster