A THOUGHT FOR THE WEEK – Why? 26th April 2020
Right at the beginning of the Covid-19 outbreak a question was asked, a question that has arisen for someone, somewhere, every minute of every day for Millennia. Why? I’ve often been asked that same question, and particularly in recent times. So I felt, at the very least, the question should be acknowledged. The question is constantly being debated by philosophers and theologians. And the truth is we don’t know all the answers and I certainly don’t have the wisdom to even try. There are many theories and within those theories are some profound truths – way too many to consider here – but as we’ve said before, apart from God, no one has the monopoly on truth. But one thing I think we can all agree on is that we live in an imperfect world, many would call it a broken world. I also think most of us are prepared to acknowledge mankind’s role in the imperfection!
If we’re honest all of us (me included) have at some time asked the question, ‘Why does God let this happen?’ As if he doesn’t realise what’s going on. Yet, if we read the scriptures, Old and New Testaments, they make it clear that God is only too well aware of how and where the world is broken -and by whom. He came among us in the person of Jesus and experienced human pain, suffering, rejection, temptation, the emotions of loss and sadness, remember how he wept when Lazarus died (John 11:33-36) Thankfully the scriptures also make clear that, although things are not great right now, ultimately the battle will be won and all will be ok.
But what about the here and now? Whilst I accept there are many things that are out of our control, if we acknowledge mankind’s role in the brokenness of the world, then we need to recognise our responsibility in helping to mend it. But how?
Questions, questions, questions…………………
Over the Easter period we thought about our response to sacrifice, those putting themselves on the line for our health and safety today and our response to Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross. Part of that response must surely be to follow His teachings.
The great manifesto of the Christian faith is ‘The Sermon on the Mount’ (Matthew chapters 5-7) it’s really worth a read. It can be done in around 10 minutes, longer of course if you stop to consider and meditate on the words. There are some parts that people find difficult (again, me included) but I recommend persevering. It starts with those wonderful blessings of the Beatitudes and while some bits may be tough, it’s peppered with encouragement – not to worry (6: 25-34), to ask and receive (7: 7-11). It’s in this sermon we find what some bibles call ‘The Golden Rule’ “In everything do to others as you would have them do to you; for this is the law and the prophets.” (Matthew 7:12). One of my favourite quotes from the prophets on this subject comes from Micah, ‘He has told you, O mortal, what is good; and what does the Lord require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God?’ (Micah 6:8)
We may have played our part in the imperfections and brokenness of this world, but I firmly believe Jesus calls us to be part of the solution too. Starting perhaps by dealing with our own imperfections, we can also be part of the healing process within relationships – families, friends and communities We have a golden opportunity at the moment and in deed it’s happening in many places. No we won’t solve all the problems, some are simply out of our control, but with God’s help let’s do what we can and trust in Him to deal with the rest, in His time, confident that one day we will all be able to rejoice together in perfect harmony.
A TREAT NEXT WEEK
Next week would have been our cradle roll service at Cooksmill Green, so next Sunday we will have contributions from our youngster’s in the ‘Sunday’s Cool’ club – I don’t know what, so let’s look forward to a surprise!
We thank you for the wonderful
World you created for us.
We ask you to forgive us
For the way we have treated it
For the way we have treated each other
And the way we have treated you.
Guide and strengthen each one of us
As we seek to help make
The world better place.
Give an inner peace and strength
To those struggling to cope with the present,
And fearful of the future.
And bring us all to a
Closer knowledge and understanding
Of your will and love for us.
In Jesus name we ask it.