So, it’s finally happened… lockdown has become more restrictive and I think the country is now collectively holding its breath… waiting and hoping that these tougher actions will help slow the infection rate enough to help the wonderful NHS staff cope with what is undoubtedly going to be a very tough season.  There is an air of surreal disbelief that this could happen in our country, this pleasant and green land… yet here we are.

And as I have spoken to people over the past couple of days there is an underlying sense of worry, and understandably so, I can resonate with that… so when I rose at 6:30 this morning for the first virtual, over the internet, prayer meeting I have ever been part of, I did so with a sense of trepidation – what would today bring…? and God answered in the best way possible.  To open the curtains in my office and be greeted with an amazing and beautiful morning, crisp and fresh, fabulous blue skies, was a true gift.

 

I was reminded in that moment that whilst this moment may well be hard, feel dark, just like winter it will pass, and we will be taken to a time of spring.  A time of anticipating what will come, a time heavy with the promise of new life in all its glory and wonder.  And as I prepared for the prayer meeting I found myself at Psalm 40 which starts with these powerful and uplifting words..

“I waited patiently for the Lord;  he turned to me and heard my cry.  He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; he set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand. He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God.  Many will see and fear the Lord and put their trust in him.

Blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, who does not look to the proud, to those who turn aside to false gods.  Many, Lord my God, are the wonders you have done, the things you planned for us. None can compare with you; were I to speak and tell of your deeds, they would be too many to declare.”

As followers of the risen Son of God we are not promised a perfect now, but we live in the knowledge and hope of a perfect later.  So, as the days and weeks go by can I encourage us all to ‘wait patiently for the Lord’ because he does and always will hear our cries.  Lift our voices to him and he will answer… but we may just have to wait awhile like the Jewish people in exile.  It is God who rescues us, lifts us up out of our troubled places.  He is the firm rock on who we stand, so ‘sing a new song’ each day… remember where our help comes from…

For when we trust in God we are blessed because we have something no one, no event, no pandemic can take away.. we have hope.  God is a God of the miracle, the wonderous, the majestic, the powerful… and we have the privilege of being his children… so rejoice for tomorrow because it is another day to remember His love for us.

Blessings to you all, stay safe, be safe
James