Sending greetings from my home to yours!
We have just heard that the strict lock-down measures are going to continue for at least another three weeks, and we will be in our homes, continuing to find that rhythm and balance for the duration.
I'm reminded of the disciples locked in their rooms after Jesus had died. They didn't yet know the meaning of the resurrection, they weren't yet sure that these glimpses of someone who sort of looked like him and spoke like him really was Him (thank you Thomas for your gift to us of doubt!)
They were afraid, locked in, and didn't feel safe.
We may be feeling some of this. Locked in, stuck, prevented from going out and seeing loved ones, restricted on where and when we can leave our homes. This coming Sunday is traditionally called "Low Sunday", reflecting the 'high' drama, excitement, tension and celebration of the previous week. The word "Low" may also reflect your mood as we respond to the news. We may also feel doubt that we have it within us to cope, or even that there will be light at the end of what feels like an endless tunnel.
Some of you may have read what Terry Waite has to say about this, You will remember that he was held hostage between 1987 and 1991 in Beirut, where he spent almost 5 years alone in a cell. His wise words to us at this time are "remember, you are not stuck at home, you are safe at home". He calls us to discover the abilities and gifts within us that we may never have known we have (I also read this recently described as digging deep within ourselves to find the diamonds in the dark), he speaks about retaining our dignity: getting up and dressed each day, taking care of ourselves, and finding a routine for each day. He reminds us that although we may physically feel alone, we are never completely alone, that his faith during his captivity, fragile though it was, helped keep hope alive.
And so as we begin again a further 3 weeks, I pray that you won't be afraid, that you will feel safe. I pray that you will find rhythm and routine, deepening of relationships through creative ways of getting in touch. I pray that although the celebration on Sunday may be 'low', you will feel lifted, perhaps through even more glimpses of Jesus, discovering that revelation of who you are, and who God is, in these unusual times.
With every blessing, and with love
Rev Becky Waring
Vicar St Martins Knowle
Area Dean Bristol South