7th April - Thought For The Day - On Our Knees
Words by Bev Jones
On Our knees
The magnolia tree in our garden is about to come into full bloom. Within a couple of days, the beautiful pale pink flowers that are adorning it will have opened completely. The tulips have made their way through the dark soil and are about to open, and the dawn chorus from the birds outside the bedroom window is as noisy as ever at 5.30am.
On the surface, this is just another Spring morning, in another Spring week – everything is absolutely normal. The natural order of things is going on. Except everything is far from normal. The whole globe is wrung out. Our country is reeling from the effect of a virus that has connected people across the world in a way that none of us would have ever wanted to be connected. And the news last night surely sent shock waves through our nation. As God’s people, we were undoubtedly moved to pray, as news of the Prime Minister in Intensive Care came through.
His words from just a few days ago seeming more prophetic than cautionary when he’d warned that things would get worse before they got better. Whatever our political persuasion, this pandemic has nothing at all to do with point scoring. It has nothing at all to do with status or hierarchy. It has everything to do with supporting one another – whoever and wherever we are. This is about lifting up our elected leaders and our front-line staff in prayer, as they give their all to navigate through the destruction that this virus has caused. This is about God’s people getting down on their knees and praying to a God whose heart is already breaking. A God who knows only too well what heartache is.
Photo by Annie Spratt via Unsplash
Two thousand years ago, the final days of Jesus’ earthly life were taking place all those miles away. At another time, when everything on the surface may well have looked normal, Judas Iscariot was plotting to betray his Lord. For just thirty pieces of silver, he was agreeing to hand Jesus over to the authorities. These were the final days leading up to the cruellest of deaths. We know the ending, but we have to go to the cross first. There is no way around the heartache. We can’t fast forward to Easter Sunday. Just because we know how the story ends doesn’t mean we can miss out the unpleasant bit – as difficult as it is.
This virus will end. It will pass. Our nation along with the rest of the world will come out of lockdown. We will be free to go where we like, with and when whoever we like. We will be studied in History in years to come, by children who won’t be able to imagine not going to school or playing with friends. The financial cost will be analysed along with many other components of this far reaching virus, and conclusions will be made by people who weren’t here. But what of those who were here? What will Christian leaders of the future say about God’s people in these times? Will they be able to write sermons, produce podcasts, give radio interviews highlighting that when it really mattered, God’s people were on their knees, petitioning, pleading and interceding for a world in chaos? Please God, let that be the case.
'God can do anything you know – far more than you could ever imagine or guess or request in your wildest dreams! He does it not be pushing us around but by working within us, his Spirit deeply and gently within us ……' Ephesians 3: 20, MSG
- Bev Jones