God's Geek

Reflections and random thoughts of a geeky youth worker in North London...

Saturday, September 17, 2005

Arthur and Betty

Since Merseyfest, I have been meaning to write about a couple that we worked with while we were there. Their names were Arthur and Betty and they led the project that we were working on. Getting to know them was one of the best parts of the week and maybe the greatest challenge as well. They are probably in their late fifties/early sixties and seem to have both spent their entire lives loving and serving Jesus. As I talked with them both, i found out that they had spent years working with young people, done loads of summer camps, been actively involved in the leadership of the local church, raised 2 children and loads more stuff. Arthur was retired but had been a deoputy head. Betty still works in social services. However, it wasn't all this activity that left such an impression on me, but their humility and obvious love for others. The incredible things that they had done was only revealed by catching glimpses of these things as we chatted together. They showered us (literally!) with love and hospitality and me and the young people were all blown away by their attitudes and lifestyle. They are still involved in church leadership and they told me that they haven't been to church on a Sunday morning for weeks as they have been going to the local car boot sale. The sale runs every Sunday morning throughout the summer and attracts 1000 people every week. They felt really challenged to go and meet these people and started something called church without walls, where they set up a stall at the car boot sale and served passer bys in various ways, culminating in inviting some of them round for a cup of tea and a chat at the end of the summer. So... they are involved in emerging church as well! They truly are incredible people and so full of the love of God and i want to be like them.

Also, last night, I was at a beautiful thanksgiving service for a woman from the church who recently died. As people spoke about her, their words held such genuine warmth and love and came away wishing that I had known her better and hoping to have a laugh with her in heaven (depending on your theology of heaven!) Like Arthur and Betty, I felt that she had so obviously lived her life loving God and loving others and that showed through everything that was being said about her. Incredible.

I feel really challenged at the minute as I believe that so many of us are called to live in ordinary places doing ordinary jobs and having ordinary lives but living these lives out in extraordianry ways. We are called to faithfully serve God in whatever situtation we find ourselves in and show his love in all that we do. I find it tempting sometimes to get noticed for any 'good' stuff that I do but I know that Arthur and Betty are challenging me to live my life honestly and openly and in service to Jesus. They also reminded me of the importance of getting older people involved in youth work as they have so much to offer. My prayer is that I will live my life today in an extraordinary way in the name of Jesus.


Blogger Squamous Amoeba said...

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12:49 PM  
Anonymous Wais said...

I find this fight against recognition really difficult as well - the amount of times that I've done things for other people, then after having done them felt I deserve something because of it, are numerous. However, I find that God tends to keep me well in check! He reminds me that forcing recognition for the things that you have done, taints the purity of the motive you had to do them in the first place.

Other days, He does it in a less subtle way, i.e. by literally giving me a light smack to my head. I'm not kidding :) it's not painful, but is definitely enough to remind me to at least try and be humble!!

People like Arthur and Betty are amazing. I'm really glad we met them.


12:51 PM  

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