Tag Archives: free

No Place Like Home

All who follow Jesus will be accompanying him in this restless, homeless wandering (p70)

Jesus answer in Matthew 8:20 is in reply to someone telling Jesus they will follow him wherever he goes.  Jesus implies that he has no home on earth – that is what we are joining when we follow him.

Perhaps that makes some sense for me of why my favourite journeys are not in any sense to places one would consider homeward bound – for to me, wherever I live, where I live now is home, but it has no greater pull in me than that.  I guess those favourite journeys have a more permanent pull on my heart and life.

A Wandering Jew

The pull in following Jesus is to be where he is.  To not have too deep roots.  To be ready to go.  We can invest a lot of time and energy in our homes and keeping them looking lovely, the rash of home improvement programmes and programmes to find the “perfect” home show us that.  Perhaps as God’s people, as Jesus’ followers, we are called to hold our homes much more loosely than that?

This passage reminds me of the word of a hymn (which has copyright, so I’ll just give you one verse):

‘Foxes have places to go’,
The Lord said,
‘But I’ve no home here below,’
The Lord said
‘So if you want to be with me all your days,
Keep up the moving and travelling on,
You’re the people of God,
So every day,
We’re on our way,
For we’re a travelling, wandering race,
We’re the people of God.
                                           Estelle White

As God’s people we are called to be free to go, ready to follow him.  Are we ready to follow him wherever he goes?

These thoughts are reflecting on Stanley Spencer’s painting The Foxes Have Holes (seen here).

This year for Lent, I am reading Christ in the Wilderness by Bishop Stephen Cottrell, published by SPCK, reflecting on Stanley Spencer’s paintings of that title.

I’m not necessarily going to blog every day on it, just when something leaps out at me – and they will be thoughts rather than full blog posts

Paid in Full

There is nothing more relieving than seeing “paid in full” stamped across an invoice.  Knowing that nothing more is owed, the product or service is paid for, there is no debt hanging over you, nothing further that you need to do.

We saw in the Genesis reading, that God doesn’t have to flood the world again. Now, in this reading from 1 Peter, we see why God made that promise – he has another plan, and that plan is Jesus.

For Christ died for sins once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God

When we go out for a meal with friends, we often split the bill straight down the middle, regardless of who has had what.  But this is like Jesus reaching over and taking the whole bill and paying it for us all.  We need to pay nothing – we probably couldn’t afford it anyway.  Jesus saw the cost of what we have done to the world, and he reaches over and pays the cost himself.  He pays not with a credit card or a wad of cash from his back pocket – he pays with everything he has – his very life, and he does it willingly for each one of us, because he knows we can never pay ourselves.

Jesus had done nothing wrong.  He was the only truly perfect person ever to have lived, because he was living out God’s ways in a way we could see and understand.  But he was willing to give his spotless life to clear the mess and debt that the rest of humanity had made and carries on making.  If you need to clean something, a cloth that is already dirty just makes the mess worse – you need a clean cloth to make a proper job.  That is what Jesus offers to the world.

His death gives the promise of a clean world, and clean lives for everyone.  Eight people were saved in the ark, Jesus offers to save each and every one of us – you and me – not by water, but by rising from the dead, subduing the wrong in the world, and returning to heaven.

Jesus offers all that today.  The only question for us is are we going to receive it?  Or are we going to stand with him arguing that we’ll pay our own share of our bill?  Or insist we can clean up the mess with the dirty cloth we have?

For Christ died for sins once for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring you to God

Will you let him?

Thank you Lord

that Jesus came into our world.

That he didn’t just show us what is right,

but made it so that we could start again.

Thank you that he paid the price that we could never pay,

gives the opportunity to truly be clean,

and offers us life.

Lord

may I not stand proud,

but accept the offer

that I may be brought to you