I had a moment this week where I behaved in a way I was completely ashamed of. I shouted at someone. The minute it happened, I was overwhelmed with guilt and hit with waves of self loathing. I spoke with someone who dealt with me with understanding and compassion which made me feel worse. I apologised to the person and to God. I know I am forgiven but it is taking me time to forgive myself.
It really made me think of the post resurrection appearances of Jesus.
Peter had really messed up. Despite his statements to the contrary, he had denied Jesus not once, but three times. He was not really any different to Judas with his betrayal. He, and most of the disciples had deserted Christ and had been hiding in a locked room
They were living in hard and bewildering times and were afraid. They were not sure what was going on.
When Jesus met with them, he did not berate them or shout, nor did he undertake any form of detailed debriefing sessions analysing where the disciples had gone wrong and how they could improve themselves.
Instead he met them, where they were, made a fire, grilled fish and spoke to them with compassion.
Each of us makes mistakes. Yet God meets us where we are.
We are the broken and flawed people of God who he still works through, using our strengths but also our failings.
Jesus loves us without bounds, forgives without reservation and forms us into something new.
We are God’s. Nothing prevents him from coming to find us and loving us.
I often lay awake …I would like to saying thinking deeply…but honestly just worrying.
I hate that the places where people have gone to pray and be with God are closed. I know we can be with God anywhere but there is something different about church buildings that can be balm to our souls.
I grieve that I can’t be with people.
I am heartbroken when I learn that someone I have visited in a local care home has died and I could not be with him, to pray with him and just be there.
I worry that people in our community feel unloved and undervalued because no one has phoned them….if that is any of you then please get in touch. You are loved and you are valued but we are operating in a way we have never done before.
But I know that God is at work. We are hurtling towards Pentecost where we see the power of the Holy Spirit.
So I pray that you will experience the joy of Easter and the excitement of Pentecost.
I pray that you will stay well and stay safe.
I pray that you will be palpably aware that you are loved by God and by us
Ps you are incredibly loved by God.