We live in an increasingly self-centred world. IPhone, IPad, IPlayer, IChurch? Our world increasingly focuses on the small picture of the individual. Life is made up of personal choice and self-defined truth. Something can apparently be true for me and not be true for you, but neither of us are accountable to a bigger picture truth. Judicial decisions are made to protect the rights of the individual and marketing firms make their money persuading the individual to choose their clients product because it best serves an individual’s personal needs. Box sets and digital communications allow me to tailor my viewing to cater for my specific tastes and personal preferences.
Now of course scripture never devalues the individual. At the heart of the gospel is the fact that Christ died for individual people. God knows the specific hairs on specific heads and each person was uniquely created by God as they were knit together in their mother’s womb.
However, God is a God of community and a bigger picture. When Jesus reaches out to individuals like Zacchaeus, Bartimaeus and Mary, he draws them not just to himself, but also to be a part of community. To be part of something bigger, something beyond themselves. God is community and he calls us to be community. That community is not a passive, visionless family. Rather God creates and calls us to be part of a community on a mission. He calls and creates us to be part of his Big Picture. He calls, creates and equips us to be part of his Kingdom mission. A Kingdom mission which operates personally on the hearts of individuals, but also powerfully as the Kingdom breaks out in our communities and politically as Kingdom justice is brought into every social structure in our neighbourhood, our nation and the nations.
This year at Jubilee we want to connect more fully with God’s Big Picture. We want to unpack the story of Israel through the Old Testament and see how God chose a people to declare his Kingdom to the nations. We want to see how that story points beyond one nation to all the nations through the work of Christ on the cross. We want to connect with the big picture in the lives of those around us and be increasingly concerned with those who live in our neighbourhood, our nation and the nations. We want to connect with fresh passion with the work of the wider church and engage in the specific big picture initiatives through Newground and Newfrontiers. We want to connect with God’s big picture for bringing social justice and care for the disadvantaged.
Why not come and join us at Jubilee and discover how you play your part in God’s Big Picture.