Lamentations 3: 22 – 23
Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed,
for his compassions never fail.
23 They are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness.
This is the one hundredth of these daily meditations. To mark the milestone I thought I would retell a really funny story but then of course I realised what you have known for some time, that none of my stories are really funny or indeed slightly amusing!
So let’s look back to where we were on 18 March when I wrote that first one for Mothering Sunday.
The World looked a very dark place then, for probably the first time in my lifetime there was a crisis which we could not say of ‘It’ll work out in the end and we’ll get through it’. There was a very real feeling that the coronavirus could well overwhelm us completely.
It was reported that the early services broadcast on the internet attracted far more visits than normal church attendance. The press reported with surprise that more and more people were praying for the first time in years. I was waiting for one of the papers to state ‘There are no atheists in a pandemic’ but none of them did.
Why though should it surprise anyone that in a time of trouble people turn to God? I wrote a while ago of my former Elder who turned to God when faced with a personal crisis. There is an Anglican vicar who nearly forty years ago was a young squaddie at Goose Green in the Falklands. He happily relates the tale that at the height of the battle he found himself praying despite having no church background, and then feeling that no matter what happened that night he would be OK for God had spoken to him.
Because of the Lord’s great love, we are not consumed. This pandemic through a huge cooperative effort by many people and organisations we have not been consumed, there is now very bright lights at the end of the tunnel. His compassions never fail as he walked the ICU wards, brushed the cheeks of those on ventilators, sat with those in nursing homes as they passed into his eternal care, as he heard the mourning cries of those bereaved.
They are new every morning, the wondrous thing about God is his love is inexhaustible, and never ever consumed by events. He has dispensed his renewing love after plagues, wars, holocausts, famines and natural disasters. That love has given many the abilities to rebuild, renew and reinvigorate our world.
Great is your faithfulness, God’s faith in us never wavers, he always believes we can triumph, we might doubt that, but he never does.
So 100 meditations later let us give thanks to God that he has been with us all the way through the dark days of doubt worry and fear, and he now is beside us as we tentatively look to what the world will be like after the pandemic.
Lord God our loving Fathe,r we come as we look to the ending of the pandemic, feeling grateful if we have come through unscathed or grateful for your presence when we have been affected or our loved ones have been ill. Thank you Lord for your faithfulness to us, and Lord we need you now as we step back into full life again.
In your Mercy hear our prayer,