Pause for Thought April 2011

I have just been watching ‘Comic Relief’ and am glad that so many people have responded, but have been horrified by the dreadful stories and conditions that have emerged from Africa and our own country. All this interspersed with the dreadful news bulletins telling of the plight of the Japanese and the fighting in the Middle East. In the meantime my Bible sits beside me and I wonder where to start and how to write a message of Easter hope.

I read psalm 102, it says: ‘The children of those who serve you shall dwell secure.’  I feel cynical – I want to take the scriptures seriously, but, I say to God, I know this is not true!  So many people do not dwell secure and how can anyone excuse a situation where a doctor has to choose which child will live and which will die, just because where they have been born there are not enough machines to keep them breathing? In today’s paper I see wars, poverty and the immense helplessness that many people experience in the face of unjust systems and as I turn to the sport pages I realise that one football team’s wages could rescue a whole nation from poverty!   And I ache because of all the doors that are shut in people’s faces every day. And I ask God,’ What is happening to these people’s prayers? Are you using them for a carpet in heaven? – because what they need is for you to lean down from heaven and save your people – just like you parted the Red Sea and set the Israelites free in Old Testament times.’

And yet, deep inside me, I know that the God I seek is already here in the mess we have made of the world – not as the baby we recognize at Christmas, but as the sorrowing desperate parent who would reply to me :’ How long must wait for you to live in my image? What are you doing about the prayers of your brothers and sisters? Are you making a carpet for your own home? Are you an Easter Christian? I gave you everything at Easter – love and hope – go share it with the world.’

Yes – this is our world and we must embrace it as part of our responsibility. We have moved on from Old Testament times, in Jesus on earth we were taught how to live  - to stand on earth while reaching to touch heaven – let that be our model for Easter.


We will be following the Lent Course which the Diocese has published centred on the Bible:
The sessions are:
Meditating on God’s word
Christ the centre of scripture
The authority of scripture
The people of the book
Entering God’s story
The course continues  Thursdays in Lent at 7.30 at June Woollard’s,
The Old Well House, Barnack.
All are welcome.