Mothers’ Union Devotion Sunday 6th September 2020
Since March, the number of people who can gather together has become a regular topic of conversation. Who would have ever thought that this would be the case? We have spent many years wishing more people would gather at our meetings and services. Never expecting for one minute that we would one day be talking about ways to restrict the number of people coming together.
First, there was just your household that could meet, then you could meet one other household outside. Then you could form a bubble with one other household indoors. Then gatherings of up to 30 could take place outside and four household could form an extended household and meet indoors. With each change, we can potentially see more of our loved ones but that is not been the reality for all of us.
Following this, in July we were able to hold services again in our churches, provided that the number of people attending could maintain social distancing. Some buildings were suitable and others not. So not all churches have been able to open. And in those that are open, maybe not everyone who wants to, can attend. This may be due to the numbers who can attend or the availability of transport as we still cannot share cars. In all of this, some of us may feel that our lives are being controlled by the confusing world of mathematics.
I was once told that Jesus is a mathematician, if so, then a mathematician with a simple outlook. His definition of the number that constitutes a gathering is just two:
For where two or three are gathered in my name, I am there among them.’
Matthew 18. 20
So whatever stage we have been at in this pandemic, we can be guaranteed that Jesus was always with us. With us as we were restricted to our single households. With us as we welcomed our immediate loved ones into our homes for that momentous reunion. With us as we met neighbours, friends, and members of our church families outside, for the first time. With us when we entered our church buildings after months of absence.
For those of you who have still not been able to do some of these things, remember that this also applies to you. You are never alone. You are always gathered with one other – Jesus.
Holding onto Jesus, lack of concern over the numbers gathered to worship can help us continue to not only survive but thrive spiritually, despite changes to our patterns of worship. Thrive because one thing we have learnt over the past few months is that whenever we pray, we know there is always someone else praying at the same time as us.
With all my love and prayers,