Home / Blog Posts / Ministry of Presence / When God calls

Preaching at Wesley Uniting Church, Canberra

Jer 1:4 – 10; Luke 4:21 – 30

Today’s reflection is poetic, a meditation on the call of God to people, individuals and together, as we continue our discernment process of where and how God is calling us, individuals and community together.

Only – Jer 1:4-10 (Sarah Agnew)

I am only, I do not know
how or what or where;

I am only, I cannot go,
I am too afraid.

I am only, I have not
height or voice or strength;

I am only, I am little,
broken, old, young.

I am only, I will not
be welcomed, heard or heeded;

I am only, they are more,
so much more than me.

I am only, but I am listening,
I will trust you when you call;

for I am only who I am,
and with you I am not alone.

I can’t, because I’m not – this; or don’t have – that; or only know – little.

How often are we the stumbling block to our own self and the answer to God’s call?

Only – Jer 1:4-10 (Sarah Agnew)

I am only, I do not know
how or what or where;

I am only, I cannot go,
I am too afraid.

I am only, I have not
height or voice or strength;

I am only, I am little,
broken, old, young.

I am only, I will not
be welcomed, heard or heeded;

I am only, they are more,
so much more than me.

I am only, but I am listening,
I will trust you when you call;

for I am only who I am,
and with you I am not alone.

When have you heard God calling you?

How did you respond?

I can’t do that, I don’t have what I need.

or

I can do that, I will draw on God’s presence and my community for what we need to answer God’s call.

Are we listening for God’s call to us in this time, this place?

How will we respond, Wesley Uniting Church, Forrest?

Bruce Sanguin: ‘Save us from the TRUTH’ (If Darwin Prayed, p 69)

Jer 1:4-10; John 18:33-38

O Holy One,

this search for truth

and its infinitely receding horizon

frustrates our need to nail it down.

Humour us, will you?

Freeze the horizon,

and fix a point that assures us

of truth’s location.

Or convince us, once and for all,

that we wouldn’t know what to do with truth

if we held it in our hands,

and remind us that whenever we try to nail you down,

you always rise up

and go ahead of us –

luring us toward the Mystery

beyond our intellect.

Grant us the grace of Jeremiah and Jesus,

who spoke not a word

until you had reached out and touched their mouths

with heart wisdom

capable of toppling empires

and raising up a kin-dom of ‘nuisances and nobodies’

who concern themselves not with the truth

but with walking in the way:

lightly upon Earth,

humbly with all God’s creatures,

and grateful for your holy company.

Amen.

We hear God calling, but we can’t say yes.

We can’t, because we haven’t found the Truth yet; because things are not how they used to be; because it is far too difficult.

We would rather throw Jesus off a cliff with his confronting, challenging call to change and generosity and getting ourselves out of God’s way …

But then, as Phil Ruge-Jones reminded us this week: ‘if you have never wanted to throw Jesus off a cliff, you may not have been paying attention.’

It’s not an easy Way. It’s not an easy call to hear and to accept. It requires change, movement, discomfort.

And it is natural, very tempting, to push God, Jesus, away, don’t ask me, don’t ask us, we are comfy where we are.

And yet. God does ask us. Each of us, to do what good we can where we can. That was something the late Archbishop Desmond Tutu was known to say. And God does ask us, all of us together, to work together and do and be more than we are on our own.

Bruce Sanguin: ‘Save us from the TRUTH’ (If Darwin Prayed, p 69)

Jer 1:4-10; John 18:33-38

O Holy One,

this search for truth

and its infinitely receding horizon

frustrates our need to nail it down.

Humour us, will you?

Freeze the horizon,

and fix a point that assures us

of truth’s location.

Or convince us, once and for all,

that we wouldn’t know what to do with truth

if we held it in our hands,

and remind us that whenever we try to nail you down,

you always rise up

and go ahead of us –

luring us toward the Mystery

beyond our intellect.

Grant us the grace of Jeremiah and Jesus,

who spoke not a word

until you had reached out and touched their mouths

with heart wisdom

capable of toppling empires

and raising up a kin-dom of ‘nuisances and nobodies’

who concern themselves not with the truth

but with walking in the way:

lightly upon Earth,

humbly with all God’s creatures,

and grateful for your holy company.

Amen.

We want very much to say – oh, don’t ask me, I am comfortable here.

And yet. We could say – yes. Ask us. We know you are here with us, your holy company; we see the breadth and depth of us as a community together.

Ask us.

Call us.

Equip us.

Send us.

Into the difficult places, the dark spaces, the wilderness, the rejection and resistance.

Send us. We have your light, we will take it into the world with you.

Yes. Ask us – we will go.

May it be so.

Your Content Goes Here