This week our theme in school is “responsibility” – the Gospel reading talks about how Jesus called the disciples together and sent them out in pairs taking nothing with them in the challenge to live their lives of faith and spread the Good News.
What does this tell us as we come to the end of the school year and for the summer ahead?
- Let us travel light – perhaps we are weighed down by all that we want and own. The challenge is to cherish the moments, memories and people we are with not the gifts or possessions we bring back from our travels. We can sometimes live a “virtual reality” taking pictures and videos from our phones rather than seeing life in full technicolour. I remember being lucky enough to be in the Olympic Stadium the night Mo Farah won the 5000m Gold Medal at London 2012. How many people really saw it rather than through the screen they held in front of them?? Having watched the clip the memories flooded back – I saw it with my own eyes, I was there… I am glad it was not a memory I tried to capture on my phone but it remains deep within…
- We need one another – in the very essence of being human we are better when we are together. Jesus sent the disciples out in pairs – we shouldn’t forget the value of walking with someone beside us, we feel stronger and better… as we grew up my Mum used to say that she knew when we were with the right person in life as they made us better and more complete. I am blessed to be married to someone who definitely meets this challenge for me, we are better together. I know when I turn up to a dinner party alone I am not quite the guest I could be without my wonderful wife beside me. We can all walk in faith together and support each other with every step.
- We need to stick to our faith even when things get tough – in recent months we have been challenged by the depths of suffering around the world whether it is the tragic shootings in the Baptist Church in America or on the beach in Tunisia. We also recently marked the 10th anniversary of the 7/7 bombings. We have to trust in our faith and ask God to help us to lead and sometimes in the most tragic times we see the best of humanity. I was inspired to see Barack Obama show this in leading the eulogy and tributes in America. It was also striking how the families of those effected offered love and forgiveness even in the depths of their despair and grieving. I pray that God helps us all to show this mercy in our lives.
- So this summer I hope we can travel light but also cherish the value of living life to the full.
- Cherish those around us and find opportunities to show them the value of their love and support.
- Trust that faith will support us in good times and bad – by listening to the Gospel message of love and forgiveness we can live life without carrying our “baggage” we have picked up along the way.
Let us all give thanks for every experience we’ve had this year. I ask that the summer is a time of rest that helps us recharge and ground us in some way. As we set off on whatever direction the journey takes us let’s remember we are better together and that God walks with us every step of the way.