Mothers’ Union Devotion Wednesday 24th February 2021

The headline grabbing ‘fact’ on many national newspapers this week has been –

June 21st :Life Goes Back to Normal.

Of course, in the main article the writer expands on the reality that this will only happen if the numbers of infections and cases in hospital continue to fall. Also, we must not get carried away with this ‘good news’ here in Wales as our roadmap and dates out of lockdown will be different. Typically manipulating our emotions as usual, journalists that have been calling for the end of restrictions are now posing the question – is this all too soon? A pattern we have become so familiar with over our lifetimes!

Life is full of raised hopes and dashed expectations. It is full of monotony, excitement, frustration, anticipation and disappointment. The current situation is different because we are experiencing these emotions en masse.  There are many passages in the Bible which call us to trust in God during times of confusion and worry. In all of these we are told that God sees a much bigger picture than we do. Learning to trust in that bigger picture, God’s grander plan, takes a lifetime and probably beyond.

God’s plan does not come to us with target dates, a linear action plan, an open press conference for us to clarify the details. As recorded by the prophet Isaiah, God’s plan is way above our ability to comprehend:

For my thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways my ways, says the Lord.

For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.  Isaiah 55. 8-9

God does not just leave us with this reassuring and yet sometimes frustrating concept. Isaiah continues with the words of the Lord, which promise that:

For as the rain and the snow come down from heaven, and do not return there until they have watered the earth, making it bring forth and sprout, giving seed to the sower and bread to the eater, so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and succeed in the thing for which I sent it.  Isaiah 55. 10-11

I find that at times of doubt, nervousness about the future, or indeed times of frustration, I turn again and again to this chapter of Isaiah. It helps that its penultimate verse begins – You shall go out with joy and be led back with peace. Reminding us that no matter what is going on in our lives. Whatever is going on in our families, our communities, our churches or our world there will always be future times of joy and peace to come. No one can guarantee that this will be on the 21st of June but whenever we find times of restoration or renewal, we are reminded of the promise that God’s Word will ultimately achieve its goal.

With all my love and prayers

Revd Sandra