How to Dis Discontent – “There’s Your Model”
Richard is rector of All Souls Church, Langham Place, London. He grew up as a missionary kid in Kenya.
His love of tennis began there and continued during secondary school in England, where he represented the combined Public Schools of Britain against the All-England Club at Wimbledon.
Richard says his family’s gospel tradition began in 1882, when his grandfather, then 14 years old, responded to a sermon by American evangelist D.L. Moody.
What He Said…”There’s Your Model”
Missionary Ken Ogden used his skills as a carpenter to good effect in one of the developing countries.
At one point he’d shown his local pupils how to build a church. They did it together. They were just about to embark on the final lesson of making the seating when the blow fell. The totalitarian government of the day found fault with Ken and ordered him out of the country with 24 hours notice.
What would you have done? Run ’round to the bank and try to extricate what funds you could? Frantically gather your most precious belongings for a hasty exit?
Ken did none of that. Those last hours he spent with his pupils, and made one seat for the new church. “There!” he said when it was done. “There’s your model. Now I’m going, but you finish the rest.”
He left them, not only with the prototype for a church seat, but also with a standard of how an integrated Christian behaves under pressure. It was the lesson of contentment.
Adapted from Words that Circled the World (Christian Focus, 2002)