The word disruptive conjures up images of hooligan sports fans, or drunken revellers spilling out onto the street in the early hours of the morning displaying behaviour without consideration for the harm they may inflict upon persons or property.
Disruptive technology maybe another thought, and the disruption it brings to accepted business practices such as Uber and the taxi industry. Years ago the advent of the quartz movement and digital technology brought seismic upheaval to the Swiss watchmaking industry.
There are many examples of disruption where the pattern of the past has been cast aside.However, take a few moments to ponder the disruption brought by the amazing grace of God.
God’s grace is disruptive. It brings change of seismic proportions to the patterns of behaviour of individuals, communities and nations.
In biblical times Zaccheaus the grasper became the giver, Paul the persecutor became the preacher, the nation of Israel under the young King Josiah turned from its wicked ways, and the people of the city of Nineveh on hearing the word of warning from Jonah, repented and received God’s mercy.
The disruptive grace of God has not been and is not confined to biblical times. The Spirit of God continues to bring disruptive grace today. People’s lives are dramatically changed, individual people, communities and nations around the world are radically and fundamentally changed.
God hasn’t stopped. He is very much alive and active in today’s world, and his grace remains disruptive and amazing!
Let’s keep it simple. If God has extended his grace to you then extend that grace to someone else. It maybe in the form of a smile, an invitation, an offer of help, a gift of food, or simply the gift of your time to listen. What a privilege.
Neil told me, when I asked, that I smiled first. I wasn’t quite sure. Our paths converged recently on one side of a pedestrian crossing. I smiled, he smiled and I asked if I could walk across with him. By the time we walked to the other side the seeds of friendship were sown.
My friends waiting in the nearby cafe were beckoning through the window for me to hurry up. We exchanged cards, Neil left and I entered the cafe to meet my friends. They had been debating whether I already knew Neil or whether it was the first time I had met him. I played along and allowed them to debate a little longer before declaring it was the first time.
It was a few days later while I was visiting Neil and his family in their home he confirmed I smiled first.
God’s disruptive grace changed both our lives that day, and the invitation, extended during my visit, for Neil to join me and my friends for Discovery Bible Study next week went straight into the calendar of his smartphone – that’s disruptive technology.
I’m looking forward to introducing Neil to my friends. They are wonderfully inclusive. Together our lives change.
God’s disruptive grace demands a new pattern…Place Your Life Before God…become a disrupter.
So here’s what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him. Don’t become so well-adjusted to your culture that you fit into it without even thinking. Instead, fix your attention on God. You’ll be changed from the inside out. Readily recognize what he wants from you, and quickly respond to it. Unlike the culture around you, always dragging you down to its level of immaturity, God brings the best out of you, develops well-formed maturity in you.
Romans 12:1-2 MSG
Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others. In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:
Philippians 2:3-5 NIV
That’s disruptive behaviour that brings with it God’s disruptive grace.