One of the things that has changed for us during this "Covidtide" is that we're doing the school run again twice a day. It certainly makes a difference to the working day, but means the children (and the parents) feel slightly more relaxed about the current situation. It also means I get to listen to the radio as I'm driving to and from Southwell; the other day I heard a programme about prayer and about how many people have made enquiries on google about how to pray. This time of confusion and fear has led to people seeking God, looking for someone or something that will enable them to make sense of this whole situation.
I know that many people have made contact with questions about God or the Christian faith, many more have joined our Facebook prayers than would normally meet in church, it seems to me that people need the comfort of a loving God and a loving community.
In a letter that St Paul wrote to the people of Colossae he says this "Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience. Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you. And over all these virtues put on love, which binds them all together in perfect unity." In this passage Paul is describing a perfect community.
Now we have certainly seen a pulling together of community over the last few months, we've supported each other and encouraged each other, we've checked on our neighbours, and we've run errands, our practical we've given and received practical support.
I fear that this winter will see longer and darker than any other we've encountered in modern times, many of the things we usually do through these months will be cancelled for safety reasons, we'll be cautious, we'll probably get fed up with the situation and with each other. But I hope that we can remember these words and as we continue to seek God through these months we'll continue to love each other, we'll make a conscious effort to be kind, gentle and patient with each other, and to support one another emotionally and spiritually as well as practically.
A note about services:
Services are currently being held at 10.30am at St Helen's Burton Joyce and at 4pm at St Mary's Lowdham.
Due to current guidance you will need to book a place and wear a facemask.
Ring or email Anna to book.
Stay safe, wash your hands, love one another.
Vicar of United Benefice of Burton Joyce, Bulcote and Stoke Bardolph with Lowdham, Caythorpe and Gunthorpe.