Thought for the Day from Anna Bland from All Hallows’:
We are living in a time of expectation and anxiety. We look to the future and do not know what is around the corner. As lockdown eases many of us are making predictions about what the world and our society may look like, some more positive than others.
John the Baptist lived in his own time of expectation as he waited for Jesus. Admittedly a more exciting prospect than the potential economic collapse we are faced with. As he prepared the way through his teaching and baptising, John knew he had a role to play in the salvation of the world and he fulfilled it with enthusiasm. In Luke 3 we see John has gained quite a reputation for this teaching and gathered a number of followers who ask his advice about how to live. He shares excellent advice unique to each individual, advocating that tax collectors collect no more than they are authorised to and soldiers do not extort money from anyone by threats. He advocates a fairer and more humane society; where everyone regardless of status takes into the account the full humanity those they interact with.
As I read these words of advice I am aware how relevant they still are for us today. In a world of Black Lives Matter, Me Too and many other movements encouraging drastic changes towards a more humane and loving society, we still haven’t managed this. Change is slow, as any activist will tell you, so if we believe that, like John, we have a God-given role to play in building the kingdom here on earth, what does this mean for us? What small part can we play in bringing about the more loving society we want to see?