Pause for Thought

Dear Friends

Decisions, decisions …

Over the past month we have been caught up in the leadership discussions within the Conservative party and noted the stark realisation that Brexit has really divided the country and in some places it has split families and long term friendships.

For us with the denomination, as we have been consulted on the appointment of a new Synod Moderator for Yorkshire, we have noted the number of vacancies from the General Secretary through to the Principal of Westminster College. We are looking for leaders.

Decisions, decisions … This reminds me of the story of how the decision was made to choose David as a leader (I Samuel 16). Their first king (Saul) was chosen as he stood shoulders above the rest and for his outward appearance. As Samuel searched for David he nearly missed him as the culture and society in which he lived only recognised the primacy of the first born and David was the last of the eight sons of Jesse. On the surface David did not present as what the people wanted or expected from a leader. He was a humble, shepherd boy who grew into a warrior and became a national hero. However, once he became king his life became somewhat ‘unsavoury’ as his faithfulness to God waned.

In our current context, with the Conservative leadership contest, some of the candidates’ history has not placed them in a favourable light. It is valuable to remember God’s words to Samuel as he searched to find the most suitable candidate, ‘The Lord sees not as man sees, man looks at the outward appearance, but God looks at the heart (I Samuel 16:7). So in our turbulent society today, the best leader may be the one which is overlooked. I do hope that this experience of finally deciding on a political leader does not leave us in a situation where we are getting what we want, but not really wanting what we get.

You may be thinking what has all this political discussion to do with us and that the appointments in the denominations will probably happen without any involvement from us as individuals. Well, alongside all of this God is not expecting us to stand still while the world happens around us. God calls us to serve him, to pray and in all we do and don’t forget – God is looking for someone who trusts in him, is faithful in small things, thankful for all things. So, as our interest is stimulated by the eventual outcome of the leadership race, and we are enjoying the summer of sports (especially the Women’s Football World Cup) may we remain alert to the still, small voice of calm of the Holy Spirit speaking into our everyday lives.

God bless

Zaidie Orr