As we watched the events unfold on our tv screens this time last year, the low grade discomfort I sometimes feel when I see something out of line or unjust turned into a strong ache in my body for the peace, shalom of heaven, for a world with no more pain, or sickness or hunger, for the stability and security of home, not my home in Lincoln, but the place I really belong, which is the kingdom of heaven, here in part but promised to us in all its fullness - one day.
Lockdown has felt uncomfortable and disorientating, a bit like a sort of exile. Exiled into our houses yet feeling not quite at home in this socially distanced world. We were just not created for this restricted way of life. It feels foreign and uncomfortable.
As the government announced the new road map to unlock the nation, it feels like we are beginning a transition into a new season - like the start of spring and new beginnings
We are at a hinge point of history and the history books will record how our generation rebuilt after this covid season.
Looking back at the story of the biblical exile and the subsequent return of God’s people to the ruined, broken down city of Jerusalem, it strikes me that there are one or two things we can learn from this great rebuilding project in the Old Testament.
In order to get the job done, God raised up Nehemiah, a marketplace leader. He was a Hebrew but also a high official in the Persian empire, serving the Persian king, he had a huge amount of influence.
Nehemiah had some prophetic imagination and was inspired to leave his status and safety to go back to the rubble of his people’s land and begin a rebuilding effort to restore the walls around the city.
Nehemiah inspired and mobilised an army of fix-it people, to begin to work on plugging the holes in the walls in front of their houses, to create the kind of home their hearts were longing for, a home with a culture of worship and where righteousness and justice was the plumbline.
As we transition into this post covid season, we need to live and pray the kingdom of our heavenly home to earth, to administer peace and justice to the streets and cities that we live in.
It’s my belief that God has been preparing an army of sacrificial and compassionate people for this moment and He will be speaking to each one of us, showing us what it could look like for us to begin to repair the gaps in the walls of communities, our society and our nation.
I want to invite you to ask God to show you the holes in the walls in your community and what partnering with Him to rebuild might look like.
Maybe it's a friend whose marriage broke down over lockdown or a neighbour who lost a loved one, rebuilding the walls could just look like kindness, empathy and friendship.
Maybe it’s the sense of groundhog day in your work team, repairing the walls might look like arranging something different or fun to build a bit of relationships and connection.
Perhaps its other wider issues like unemployment or mental health problems in your community. As God highlights the gaps that need repairing, we can be certain that He will equip us and guide us in the rebuilding.
As a means of sparking our imagination for what our contribution could be to the rebuilding, we are running a series called “Reset” on the GLX social media platforms.
We are excited about this opportunity to dig into ideas from practitioners and servant leaders in their workplaces on what the nation will need to do to reset and rebuild and how as Christians with a contribution to make, we can get ourselves ready to rebuild.
Join us on the journey as we share the stories of people preparing to reset and rebuild, to advance the kingdom everywhere.