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An adventure in community

Some of you will know, and maybe others will have wondered why I have been quiet on my blog over the last few months – the reason is that I am in transition. 15 years after moving to yorkshire, I am now living in Dundee, Scotland. The plan is that over the next few months my family will move up to join me.

So why? when we are now well connected into the area, when people like us and will miss us, and when we should be settled, would we move? The simple reason is that we have heard God’s “call” to step into something new and be part of a new christian community in Dundee. There are hundreds of reasons to stay, and very few to go – but dispite that it is simply the right thing to do.

At a very deep level Christians are called to travel, to re-locate, to follow into new and unknownplacesmore often than we know. The bible is packed fuller than a tin of sardines with stories of people who “go”, from Abraham setting out for an unknown country, through Ruth, travelling back to Israel with her mother in law, stories of a whole nation leaving Egypt, leaving Isreal, leavingExile in Babylon, there is a theme of packing up and moving out! For the early church too it is a story of moving on from town to town, preaching the good news and feeling the tug of cities still to be reached!

So, over the last few years I have sensed a call to step outside of what I know, and discover again what it means to go to a new place, and live out what it means to be a stranger with a contagious faith.

At the heart of the “problem” is that what we are to do is not yet clear, it would be a whole lot more comfortable to know what this community we¬† are called to will look like, where we will live, what we will do, who our lives will connect with. At the moment (even after sixmonths in Dundee) there are more unknowns thanknowns! We are waiting, watching, trying to see what “God is doing in this generation, so that we can as quickly as possible get into line”. For now the important thing is to go, rather than to know.

Jesus tells a story about people who are invited to a feast, when the time comes to dress up and turn up they all find they are “busy that night”, their reasons all see very reasonable, just married, need to be at work, just not got my finances sorted yet… but the host isn’t symphatic or patient, if you can’t be bothered to turn up I’ll get the poor and the cripples to to party instead.

How often do we as christians find our excuses more reasonable, than just turning up – unsure of what the next step is, but willing to go anyway… Jesus calls us to a life of risk, of adventure, of stepping out and seeing what He will do, rather than staying safe with what we know.

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