2nd August 2021


A couple of weeks ago, amidst all that excessive heat, I lost connection on the computer and also on the TV as BBC IPlayer and You Tube could not be reached. A quick phone call to our IT son and that was soon put right. More upsettingly, that same night, at four in the morning, we lost power as the fans keeping us cool stopped working. This time our kind neighbour came early next morning and discovered the switch for the power circuit had tripped.

Those two events seem to me to offer a picture of the chaotic world in which we live: a world of lost connections – beyond the mundane burdensome concerns of the everyday – to God and eternal truth. Scripture is clear that our Heavenly Father is always there, waiting to hear from us, only needing our ‘Speak, Lord, for you servant is listening.’

And the gift of power is part of the pentecostal promise: Jesus’ final parting words to the disciples – ‘You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you’, but that for no selfish enjoyment, but rather so that we may be his witnesses in the world ‘throughout all Judaea and Samaria, and even in the farthest corners of the earth’ [Acts 1 v8]. And so we have an invitation to prayer and to being Christ’s presence in the world. Here is the change that gives the mundane new significance, as our everyday world becomes the theatre in which faithful discipleship, without thunder and lightning, makes Christ known according to the agenda Jesus sets out in Matthew 25: cladding the naked, providing food and drink to those who need them, housing the stranger, and caring for the sick and the prisoner. In acting thus be sure God’s kingdom comes with power.

John Briggs