Mark Sayers – A Non-Anxious Presence: How a Changing and Complex World Will Create a Remnant of Renewed Christian Leaders
ISBN 1 3978 08024 2 8578
From time to time a book will come along that hits the spot by speaking with prophetic precision to the present moment. A Non-Anxious Presence is one of those books. My fried Mike Betts of Relational Mission says that he would like to give a copy of this book to every Christian leader in the UK.
The book speaks to the climate of anxiety that has been evident during and in the aftermath of the Covid pandemic and its aftermath.
The author suggests that this state of anxiety has not only a result of the impact of the virus but is a culmination of a web of mini-anxieties, that have been brought to the surface during the pandemic. These anxieties have arisen because of a dramatic shift in the constants of human life, including church life. The author helpfully explores how the move from in-person to online church has challenged the strategic importance of the gathered church, and that this has led in turn to an anxiety among Christian leaders concerning their identity and purpose. The author describes this time as “in-between moments”, “grey zones, that create anxiety”.
Using the story of the earthquake at Krakatoa and the biblical life of David, the author suggests that crisis moments that threaten our peace and disturb our order can in fact be a prelude to fresh developments and remarkable fruitfulness.
What is required for this to happen is that leaders must develop the role of being a non-anxious presence in the communities in which they serve. This is a very stimulating book that repays careful reading. Peace be with you.
John Woods is a writer and Bible teacher based in West Sussex, and regularly travels out to Latvia, where he is Director of Training at the School of Preachers in Riga. John's blog is at www.schoolofpreachers.org