This coming week will see a big change in life for Lisa and I, with a major honour being bestowed upon us both. It’s safe to say that it was never really in our life plan and something we’d never really considered until I was approached 18 months or so ago and asked to “go home and talk to your good lady and let us know what you think.” Many of you will know what I’m talking about, for those that don’t, read on and all will be revealed.
I’m sure that the life plan of Jesus may not have been what he all together had in mind either. I’m sure he didn’t plan to leave the comfortable realms of heaven to come to earth, be born in a lowly stable and to save a lost mankind. I’m sure he didn’t always plan the meetings and confrontations that he encountered with the Scribes and the Pharisees, but unlike many of today’s political leaders he always had the right answer and the ability to put them right back in their place. I’m sure he didn’t plan every miracle, every healing that he performed, but he did so because he cared and out of compassion for those that he came to live and work amongst. And we know that when he pleaded with his father to “take this cup of suffering from me if it’s possible, yet no my will but yours be done,” that he certainly didn’t plan to suffer a painful, criminals death, to save mankind. But through all of this he obeyed the will of his father with the words “not my will, but yours be done.”
The life of Jesus was a life of service, a life that put others first even though many of them were His subjects and those who faithfully followed and worshiped and ministered with Him. And as those who follow Christ it is to a life of service that all of us are called as well. This week, as Lisa and I are so truly honoured to become the mayor and mayoress of Milton Keynes, an honour that we are so privileged to receive and one that was certainly never in our life plans or ambitions. We are called not be served by, but to serve the community that we will become the first citizens of. We do hope that many of you will be able to join, virtually, with us on Wednesday evening for what will be, albeit in very different circumstances to what would be considered normal, a very special and memorable evening for us both. The link is on both the church website and the Facebook page. And as we accept this great honour, so we too seek to emulate the life of Jesus, to serve the community to which we have been called and in which we have been placed, just as Jesus did 2000 years ago. Please, pray for us this week and throughout the year that we may be servants of our community and that, by so being, we may be truly and wonderfully blessed.
Later in the year we hope to be able to hold a civic service. One of the hymns that we shall sing if it is possible perhaps sums up in one verse what we hope and pray our year will be;
Brother, let me be your servant
Let me be as Christ to you
Pray that I may have the grace
To let you be my servant too.
“For the Son of man came not to be served, but to serve.”