Mine. Faded from life but not eternity.

Colourful. Independent. International.

Interesting. Loving. Close. Joyful. Laughing.

More than. Caring. Friendly. Kind. Silly.

Missed. Honoured. Loved.

Joyfully remembered.


Hospital Reflection

A noisy room divided by quiet curtains.

Silence, permeated by occasional words that interrupt turning pages.

Retreat into shared but unexplored history from the violent invasion of the unexpected present.

A large mass resting on wide support generously offered in love but unable to change the flow towards finality.

How finality looms, rising like a blow from Ahab’s bane.

Then, drawn down to deathly depths.

Yet Life, eternal, comes forth…

Understanding government

What is government? And how do we govern? These are serious questions to ponder as we go forward if we believe we are called to spiritual government.

Christendom may not have worked too well and been rejected by the world in favour of democracy. And the ideas that debunked it brought intellectual ‘freedom’ but not real freedom. Theocracy is unacceptable to those who don’t know God (and many who do) because of its autocratic nature. Democracy (partly a result of the ideological rejection of Christendom) works to a point, but hardly honours God in its essence, which raises Man to a God-less governing position. (Its blessing to us that we are free to honour God in a democracy whereas under certain types of theocracy, we are not.) Democracy also feeds Mankind’s idea that he is in charge, satisfying and stroking our collective ego.

We cannot imagine having a format like the ancient Israelites where one man, prophetically connected to God, leads us. We actually cannot imagine being ‘led’ at all! (Democracy allows us to imagine we have a say.)  Anything we put in place is corrupted and flawed before we start if we use our own ideas, plans or thoughts. I don’t believe we can govern from here. Where from then?

Like some others, I recognise we have to govern from a different place. We all know the CS Lewis phrase about yearning for another place. That other place is not only what’s been described as our Heart’s Home, but when we are there, it opens out into a reality that is beyond understanding, except by faith; beyond seeing, except by faith; beyond imagination, except by faith.

We believe, as Christians, that faith is the substance of things unseen. And faith remains a real commodity in that other place. There, it is solid yet immaterial, concrete yet intangible. Its nature also demonstrates how little we understand about that other place and provides a bridge to help us engage that reality because that other place is real and when we go there, it becomes our reality and we want to keep going back. Ian Clayton says this “Faith is a spiritual substance that becomes the building block for materialising what you hope for. Faith is the substance of heaven’s provision. It is not seen with the naked human eye. It is seen in the world of YHVH…” (p60, The Order of Melchizedek).

Love is also a main commodity of that world of YHVH. We cannot see it, touch it, hear it, smell it – yet it is a reality. When we love, a bridge is formed with the other place. Love pushes open a door and props it open, like a doorstop, creating an entry point for us into God’s realm – where he dwells as Love. There is a golden thread of Love from his heart to ours that constantly pulls us back into our Heart’s Home. That thread is manifest in Jesus.

When Love and Faith happen, we begin to realise that true government comes from that realm. Faith and Love are the means by which we engage it and any government from there is a byproduct of that happening. We don’t seek government for its own sake but it can surround us when we are In Him. The very nature of that government is manifest Love and Faith. That’s why it cannot come from us on earth. It has to come from us in Him in heaven.

This is where we’ve gone so wrong on earth throughout the generations. Let’s move on.

Whether heavenly or earthly, we all live under some form of government. How much better if it’s rooted in and shot through with Faith and Love. The centurion Jesus spoke to recognised this. He also knew how heavenly authority creates and implements government. The two go together really.  As a centurion, this man would have both experienced and administered direct and indirect government. He also saw that “government was upon Jesus’ shoulder”. He knew something greater than what he’d experienced on earth was in front of him and that the government Jesus carried could change his (and his servant’s) present reality.

This is where we are going. I’m not seeing it manifest yet but I see it in our future. And we are to accomplish greater things than that! I do believe that. We must learn not just about the manifestations of heaven but how to create and administer it on earth. This was always the job of the wise men, of those who did walk that uncomfortable imaginative journey. Jeremiah saw it in Israel’s future. Isaiah prophesied it. John the Baptist changed the atmosphere for Jesus’ arrival. Jesus manifested an example of it for us. Paul laid out some boundaries. But the ekklesia dropped the ball. We need to pick it up again and carry it over the line.

There are always consequences to government. Think of the reaction you get when you say No – to children, family, employees, church members… You draw a line in the sand. Mmm. I wonder if that was the line Jesus was drawing? He dared them to cross his authority.

So Government often has to say no. Good government may say no and redirect. It may refuse to accept ‘the premise’. We often accuse those in government of ‘not answering the question’ but if a direction has been set and a decision made, hopefully all factors have already been considered. Maybe. Maybe not. And it could also be a worldview issue. But I digress.

What exactly is government? Is it the creation of order? When it’s done well, it creates freedom. The woman caught was set free. Heavenly government sets us and others free. Let’s learn how together…

Practical suggestions for an outworking of kingdom government…

Roger Haydon Mitchell's Blog

It’s been a long time – 6 months – since I last posted. So a big thank you to all that have continued to visit and make use of the mass of material that can be found here! The reason for the long break has been my engagement as guest editor of the Taylor and Francis (Routledge) published academic Global DiscourseJournal. The special edition that I have edited is on “Cultivating New Post-secular Political Space” and should be available online over the next month or so. It consists of 6 great articles and responses and I will include a link on the blog as soon as it’s available.

In the meantime I’m back blogging, with this post for the forthcoming conference on Parenting for a Sustainable Future that my friends at Liberty Church, Tottenham are hosting from September 21st -23rd. I can’t be there myself due to prior…

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Hospital reflection

A noisy room divided by quiet curtains.

Gentle silence permeated by occasional words that interrupt turning pages.

Retreat into shared but unexplored history from the violent invasion of the unexpected present.

A large mass resting on wide support generously offered in love but unable to change the flow towards finality.

How it looms, that finality, rising like a blow from Ahab’s bane.

Then, drawn down to deathly depths.

Yet Life, eternal, comes forth…

Images on my retina

What a while.

Images remain on my retina.

A rush round (the M25) and up (the M1). A dark rainy drive with no lights and lots of glare – four times in one evening.  Meals reduced to ten minutes.  Texts, calls, messages, emails, pictures, a maze-like walk (10,000 paces in four hours), parking and paying, parking and paying…

All for love.


A song sent…

“You and I’ve got history,

We go way way back…”  

And His Peace, that we don’t understand, flows through my body and soul from the gateway of my spirit.

And so, together, we make more history…

In the middle

Roger Haydon Mitchell's Blog

We all have a context and a background, a worldview, social construct, call it what you will. The important thing is to recognise it but not be bound by it, let alone be dogmatic about it. I rather like theologian Graham Ward’s standpoint theology approach where we recognise where we started and where we are now but keep open to the impact of others and their standpoints. Exercising prophetic sight from the context of this kind of open standpoint is costly but crucial. So I am everlastingly grateful to my partner Sue Mitchell for continuing to pursue such sight. I for one need it, and in its light will be ready to start once again blogging more resources for kenarchy practitioners and love-activists generally. Thanks to those who continue to visit this site and peruse the material whether I’m blogging regularly or not. It’s certainly encouraging to me. So here’s…

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