So, looking at Revelation (for more on what Revelation is about, see yesterday’s blog here), and right near the start are these 7 letters, dictated if you like, from Jesus to 7 different churches in Greece and Asia Minor (Turkey to us).
And they each contain, to varying degrees, some encouragement, some warning, some challenge, and a promise. And these two ideas, that each church has an angel, and that God might want each church to hear something uniquely personal, have struck me every time I read Revelation chapters 2 & 3.
So today, as I read the two letters to the churches in Ephesus and Smyrna I was partly thinking, what would God want to say to the angel of my church… what would be the areas where we’d be given encouragement, and where would we be called to account. And its not always a comfortable thought.
The other thought I had (I know, 2 thoughts in one day- easy tiger!) was from one particular verse- ‘return to your first love’… It reminded me of the love we have for things we’ve just started, like keen surfers who just want to talk about their last wave, or our new car, or our new partner. And I wondered why we let our faith slide from that sort of enthusiasm into a place of mediocre acceptance… or theoretical and occasional adoration that rarely develops into consistent life patterns.
Just as I don’t want the love I have for my wife and children to wither and dry up, so I don’t want the love I have for God to wither and dry up… and in both cases that requires me to take some responsibility for ensuring that love grows.
I hope that today I will be growing in that love, revelling in that first love.
But what’s God saying through your angel to you? Or to your church?