Anyway, this is my pattern for now, and it may very well change again.
What I've noticed in Luke 12, or rather what I've be mulling over, is the connection between the stories. What do they tell me individually and together as a narrative? What lessons can I learn, what might God be saying to me through this collection of stories as a whole?
There's a sort of work pattern, kingdom thing, priority theme going in it seems. The rich fool fails to take any counsel from anyone other than himself. Even if he ultimately rejects it, he never looks at the bigger picture or his wider opportunity to act less selfishly. Selfish too seems to be a concern of the second story where we are challenged to prioritise the kingdom over self-interest.
The third challenge comes in the call to be ready. Ready for what? Well in this case it's the return of the master, but it struck me that there was also the possibility of simply being prepared, being abut the daily business of the kingdom as preparation.
I don't want to push these things too far, after all these are my thoughts form my devotional reflections not a commentary on the text or an exegesis of the text for that matter. In fact, as I went to the text, my main question at that moment was about what we were doing and what we should do. I'd been for a walk, and as i looked at all the new build and recent build I wondered about the process of connecting with the people that would be living in those properties. wondering if any of them would share our vision for a missional community and how we would find them or they find us.
It was then that I read Jesus' words: “Be dressed for service and keep your lamps burning, 36 as though you were waiting for your master to return from the wedding feast. Then you will be ready to open the door and let him in the moment he arrives and knocks.
Rather than a challenge, these words came as a comfort. It was almost as if there were to simple questions to answer:
1. Are you being selfish?
2. Are you putting the kingdom first?
If the answer was yes to both, then you are "dressed and ready for service" for when the master arrives. There is no need to panic about what is not happening.
Time to remember that it's not about what I can do for the kingdom, but about Jesus is already doing and how I can become more involved in that. I've always had great plans about how useful I could be to God if only I was in the right setting with the right people, sharing the right vision. But my plans are not the point.
My dreams are not the issue here, for they the hammer holds