Generally, I’m a very destination focused person: I like outcomes and measurable results. I like to know why I’m doing something and what it’s going to achieve. God, however, seems to be more interested in the process; in the path that I take, as much as where it leads. He cares about my motives, about what is in my heart. I remember once hearing a Christian speaker sharing how he thought that many people in the room felt like their lives were always ‘two steps forwards, then one step back’, like they weren’t really getting anywhere. He paused and said: ‘Life is a dance, enjoy the dance.’ I like to think of my life with God as a dance. He takes the lead; he sets the music. My job is to follow his every step, whether they make sense to me or not (and often they don’t!)
Life is a dance, enjoy the dance
In John 15 Jesus describes himself as the true vine and us as the branches. We are in him; and apart from Him, we can do nothing. Is this passage comforting or challenging? For me it’s both. I can’t do anything meaningful in my own strength; I can only bear fruit if I remain in him, rooted and established. The comfort is that my strength comes from him; the challenge is that I need to cling to him to know that strength.
‘If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.’ Jn 15v7,8
This month marks the start of a new season for me as I step into the role of CAP Debt Centre Manager
Life Church are partnering with Christians Against Poverty to open a new debt centre covering Southampton West. Debt is a huge issue in our city and our nation, blighting the lives of countless people. There are people drowning in debt, and we have the opportunity to show that we care, to offer a way out, and to show them Jesus. This came out of Life Church’s vision to rescue those who are drowning: drowning in sin, drowning in debt, and drowning in sickness. We are to be a lifeboat providing rescue.
I know that I am called to do this. God gave me a picture back in 2017 of a debt centre operating in the Lordshill area, with me running it. I personally can’t rescue anyone, but Jesus can. I can’t save someone from sin, but Jesus can. I can’t rescue someone from debt, but I can work with CAP, show someone Jesus’ love and help them on their way to being debt free. I can’t heal someone, but I can pray that Jesus will because I know he can.
My plan for this new season is to fix my eyes firmly on Jesus and to follow his every move. To let him show me the steps, to let him pick the music and the tempo. To remain in him, so that together we might bear fruit to the Father’s Glory. The debt centre was originally going to open in April, but like everything else, has had to be paused due to Covid-19. We will not be able to do face to face appointments when we open, all client meetings will be done virtually. It’s different to what we imagined, but God always knew that we would begin in August, God always knew that there would be 4 months of waiting before we could open, God always knew that we would start virtually. God knows.
If you want to know more about Christians Against Poverty, take a look at their website https://capuk.org/. Their latest client report, ‘is anyone listening’, paints a clear picture of the need in our nation and the impact of CAP’s work.
If you’re considering getting involved, please get in contact, and please pray that many people will find Jesus and be freed from debt. Pray also for wisdom for the Southampton churches as they work together to meet the needs of the most vulnerable in our city, and pray that I will be rooted and established in Jesus’s love as I start this work.