I have deliberately not posted on my blog in the last few weeks so that the previous post which pointed you towards a very important discussion that is happening within the Baptist Union at the moment: Beyond 400 – 40 Voices.

We are now at the mid point – 20 voices have spoken and 20 to go…

I hope you have taken the time to read them all and if you haven’t then I plead with you to go read AND comment – this is meant to be a discussion where maybe we can begin ,along with The Futures group who are looking at the more financial and structural issues, to begin to discern where God  might be leading us all. I have heard too many people moan they have not been consulted and yet refuse to engage in this, yes unofficial’, discussion which is being viewed and considered by The Futures groups and, much more importantly, Council members who need our prayers as they have to take important and difficult decisions about the future – please help them discern God rather than snipe from the sidelines

This is more far reaching in than just structural questions – it is about how we relate to one another, what is the nature of the Union – do we even need it in any form, what should ‘church’ look like in the future. In my sermon this week I am asking how much of what we do is ‘tradition’ and/or ‘cultural’ that we treat as  Christian ‘law’? That question extends to everything we do as Baptist communities at all levels.

The 20th voice, Jane Day, asks: do we have courage?…..’Courage to say no to always meeting in a church building because that’s what we have always done, courage to say no to keeping things going, courage to say no to injustice and courage to stop putting off the dreams.  Courage is not something that you can buy from a packet of course but I think we can develop it as we spend time with God and allow space for the dreams to be birthed in our hearts.’

I wonder do you and I have the courage to read the voices and the comments, engage and dare to dream – it will be difficult to examine all we hold dear and wonder whether any, or all, of it needs to change and adapt to new situations. Do we have the courage to name the elephants in the room as at least one person has today?

Do we have have the courage to follow God wherever that leads us?

Be Bold……for God is with us


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