Church of England Diocese of Norwich Ringland

Thought for the week of 21st February 2021

20 Feb 2021, 8:55 p.m.

At once the Spirit sent him out into the wilderness, and he was in the wilderness forty days, being tempted by Satan. He was with the wild animals, and angels attended him.     Mark 1 : 12 – 13

Bible reading : Mark 1 : 9 - 15

Thought for the week

In Mark’s version of Jesus’ temptations the whole episode is dealt with in a few verses. It was a hard, testing time for Jesus, yet the emphasis is on how He overcame. How He entered even the most fearful, untamed place (even amongst wild animals), and conquered. He overcame Satan, and showing that He was never alone, when the ordeal was over ‘angels attended Him’.

Lent is unusual this year when so much has been given up for so long already. Yet maybe the emphasis this year is that although many of us have felt alone (myself included – I spent ten days in isolation alone in my study), we are never alone. The Lord is with us and has been with us through the experiences of the past year, and He continues to be with us to fill us with His grace and strengthen us through the Holy Spirit.

This Lent is a time to recognise the continuing hardships in many people’s lives, but the Lord is with us. We hear His voice through Scripture and prayer. We know His grace and comfort in our hearts. We are called to put our trust in Jesus, ‘But in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us’. Romans 8:37. May Lent be for you a deepening of faith and even a celebration of Jesus’ Presence and love even in the hardest days.

Rev Paul

Prayer for this week

Heavenly Father,

Your Son battled with the powers of darkness,

And grew closer to you in the desert:

Help us to use these days to grow in wisdom and prayer

That we may witness to your saving love

In Jesus Christ our Lord, Amen