I have a confession to make. As someone who always advocates the need for 7–8 hours’ sleep each night – in order to be healthy both mentally and physically – I didn’t follow my own advice on one Sunday evening in August.
I stayed up until 1.30am because I was glued to the television watching Andy Murray fighting for a gold medal in the Olympics. When he won, I clapped and whooped so loudly that I think he may have even heard me in Rio!
After the joy came tears as I watched him receive his medal as the Union Jack was hoisted up on high. We saw this similarly happen for all the Olympic events. Every time a gold, silver or bronze medal was awarded, the country’s flag of the winning medalist was raised amidst much applause.
Flags were also waved, jigged around, flapped, by enthusiastic supporters at each event. Often they were given to successful athletes so that they might wear them to show everyone the country to whom they belonged. All those who supported them wanted to show off their hero and to identify with their success. They were proud of them.
Yesterday, some of our friends visited a number of households in our parish. They carried with them invitations to our Harvest Festival, information about what goes on at Christ Church plus a small gift. It was a way of waving the kingdom flag and showing our community that we love and belong to King Jesus.
All this got me thinking. Firstly, I wonder how much flag-waving each one of us does for the kingdom of God by what we say and by what we do. Secondly, just how proud are we of our King? Which really means, do I seek to express my Christian faith to my neighbours, friends, colleagues – and do I tell them about my hero, King Jesus?
Let’s pray for those who will be going out to visit again in the future as we seek to reach out to our community and let’s pray for ourselves: for opportunities to witness to others.
With love, Anne Lovegrove