10th June 2022

Are we ready for change?

A pastoral vacancy brings many blessings! One of these is the variety of preachers who lead our worship Sunday by Sunday, each often ignorant of what has gone on the week before and so, if not carefully guided, quite capable of choosing the same hymns and delivering a very similar message to the expectant congregation. It’s not a bad thing at all, repetition.

So one theme that is emerging from our Sundays together seems to be this: are you ready for change, people of Tyndale? For change will surely come as we step into the future together.

I am reminded of Donald Rumsfeld and his famous speech about the problems of trying to look into the future with too much precision.

as we know, there are known knowns; there are things we know we know. We also know there are known unknowns; that is to say we know there are some things we do not know. But there are also unknown unknowns—the ones we don’t know we don’t know… it is the latter category that tends to [hold] the difficult ones.

So we’ve got our known knowns to prepare for: Sam King will arrive in August.

We’ve got our known unknowns: where will he live? What will be Sam’s priorities?….

But we’ve also got our unknown unknowns, the spirit bringing what it will to our door. Think of that church in Gary’s example from last Sunday; think of those disciples in Acts wondering what on earth was going on.

How should we prepare? Listen carefully and stay flexible, I say. Here’s what Paul has to say as he writes to the Ephesians:

Be prepared. You’re up against far more than you can handle on your own. Take all the help you can get, every weapon God has issued, so that when it’s all over bar the shouting you’ll still be on your feet. Truth, righteousness, peace, faith, and salvation are more than words. Learn how to apply them. You’ll need them throughout your life. God’s Word is an indispensable weapon. In the same way, prayer is essential in this ongoing warfare. Pray hard and long. Pray for your brothers and sisters. Keep your eyes open. Keep each other’s spirits up so that no one falls behind or drops out. Ephesians 6:11-18 MSG

Nick Parsons