What lessons can we learn about God from a satnav? This is how is happened: I programmed my device to guide me to the Baptist Assembly at the Norbreck Castle Hotel in Blackpool. It correctly navigated to almost within sight of the hotel and then, I decided that I knew better and made off in the other direction (many men will know this routine). After about ½ an hour of faffing about, we finally found the hotel. After all, you cant miss it, its probably one of the largest buildings in Blackpool.
One of the overall themes for the Assembly was to challenge Baptists to “Shine like stars” (Philippians 2:15) but how can we do this? Is it not arrogant for us to believe we are somehow better than other people? Of course we can’t and it would be a huge mistake to take the challenge this way. Jonathan Edwards (outgoing General Secretary) in his address to the Assembly re-iterated his belief in the fundamental importance of Prayer, he put it this way “If the Holy Spirit doesn’t show up, then there’s no point in doing it”. Why do we think we can do things solely based on our own flawed expertise in life, better than we can with the help of the Creator of this world? (In the same way, why do I think I am a better navigator than my in-car satnav?)
In the world of the Christian Church or associated organisations, Prayer is a natural pre-requisite of any undertaking and is part of the everyday routine (according to Jonathan we ought to do it more), but in the secular occupations of many of us this just isn’t so and prayer is absent completely. Maybe Churches ought to find out about the needs and challenges of the occupations of members and attenders, and pray systematically for them. After all, these are things that affect people’s lives every day. In this way, we really can shine like stars. It’s kind of like making sure the satnav has up-to-date programming, the latest routes and updates and is able to lock on to those satellites in the sky, like stars.