Daily Devotion 18 April 2020

Create a peaceful space to pause, and allow yourself to feel God’s presence alongside you, as near to you as your own breath. In following the reflection below, as a church we will draw closer to God and to one another as we grow in faith and deepen our sense of belonging to God.

Romans 8:38-39 ‘God’s Ever-Present Love’

38 For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, 39 nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Everywhere in the world today there are dark shadows, causing fear, pain and bewilderment. There is very little certainty in anything we do, or are allowed to do, and a great deal of sadness in our isolation from those we love. We all recognise that fear is a very powerful emotion and can trigger anxiety and leave us feeling isolated and alone but in those times of weakness we must remember God’s power and strength and His love for each one of us and for those we hold dear.

In recent weeks we have been thinking about Gethsemane and Calvary and what Christ suffered for you and for me – and it too must have been a time of dark shadows, fear and bewilderment. But for us today the knowledge of such sacrifice and love can stir our souls and enable us to conquer the fear of an uncertain future. Whatever we face we do not face it alone.

Martin Leckebusch captures this in these selected verses of his hymn (StF 641):

When circumstances make my life too hard to understand,
no doubt or fear, no pain or strife, can snatch me from God’s hand.
It is enough for me to know God’s promise and God’s care:
wherever on life’s path I go my Saviour will be there.

In Chapter 8 of his letter to the Roman church Paul expresses this beautifully, wondering what might separate us from the love of God. After weighing up just about all he can think of, he decides that in our Risen Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ – there is nothing that can.

Prayer:
Loving Father – no matter what we must face in our lifetime, be it long or be it short, we gain strength to endure through the promise and knowledge of your love.  You are our rock and on you we depend.

Because of the faith and trust we have in you we feel emboldened to hold before you in prayer those who have lost loved ones, those who are troubled and afraid, for the many thousands who are struggling to cope with daily life and for those who expose themselves to danger each day on our behalf.

For those who hold power we pray for wisdom, courage and commitment to work for the common good of all.

We offer our prayers in the powerful name of Jesus. Amen.

Image: freely available online.
Hymn extract by Martin Leckebusch: © 1999, Kevin Mayhew Ltd, Buxhall, Stowmarket, Suffolk IP14 3BW.
Reflection and Prayer © 2020 Nancy Davis.

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All material within this order of worship is reproduced by permission under CCL 1226356