Mothers’ Union Devotion Sunday 17th January 2021- the Second Sunday of Epiphany

The Lord called Samuel again, a third time. And he got up and went to Eli, and said, ‘Here I am, for you called me.’ Then Eli perceived that the Lord was calling the boy. Therefore, Eli said to Samuel, ‘Go, lie down; and if he calls you, you shall say, “Speak, Lord, for your servant is listening.”’ So, Samuel went and lay down in his place. 1 Samuel 3. 8-9

I hope that each of you is able to find someone who can provide you with moral and emotional support during these long days of lockdown. Support from the people in your household. Support over the phone from family and friends. Support from your parishes and / or Mothers’ Union. Support from carers and other such organisations. Sometimes, of course, such help can come from the most unlikely of people. After all, for many of us the only people we see physically outside of our households at the moment are the delivery drivers. I had never noticed before that it is the same driver, from one particular company, who comes day in, day out in our street.

Such support from what on the surface seems like unlikely sources can be a real gift. Connecting us with the world outside our four walls. Reminding us that life goes on in other parts of the country. Life for Samuel was also pretty restricted. He was brought to the temple as a young child and grew up among the priests and other servants of the Lord. He only saw his parents once a year when his mother Hannah bought him a new robe. Samuel, however, received his support from the old priest Eli. So, when he heard a voice calling him in the night, he naturally assumed that Eli was calling him. Eli listened to what Samuel had to say and although it took him a while, he eventually realised just what was going on. Then he was able to give Samuel the advice he needed, to follow the path that was right for him.

When we are struggling or we notice that others are struggling with the events of the current crisis we need to seek and offer that same listening, discerning ear. Our own personal Eli who can help us find a way to cope in the disconcerting daily situations we find ourselves in. Our own personal Eli who allows us to be calm and open for the still small voice of God.

May you all find peace and stillness in these frustrating times.

All my love and prayers

Revd Sandra