Daily Devotion 21 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.

John 17: 25-26 ‘Jesus Prays for his Disciples’

25 ‘Righteous Father, the world does not know you, but I know you; and these know that you have sent me. 26 I made your name known to them, and I will make it known, so that the love with which you have loved me may be in them, and I in them.’

Today, many in the world are continuing to come to terms with the coronavirus epidemic, as we continue in our lockdown and all the adjustments that have been needed. It Is indeed a great leveller, and the virus is affecting rich and poor, black and white, male and female alike. Some groups are more vulnerable than others but the phrase ‘we are all in it together’ certainly rings true at this time. The need to support one another each and every day even in small ways, remains very important.

Before his arrest, trial, and crucifixion, Jesus prays. The whole of Chapter 17 in John’s Gospel is this prayer, and it’s astonishing given what Jesus himself was about to endure and suffer, that this prayer seems dominated by concern for his disciples and friends. For him, death was not far away, but he was deeply concerned still for his friends who were at risk in a hostile world. Jesus prayers for their protection, for them to be a holy people, and that they may be united as one in the love of God.

This prayer of Jesus is for us, too, to read, listen and use, because he continues to pray for us. That we should remain safe, holy and united in God’s love. There continue to be many concerns about how we live now, what the future may hold for us and our society, the needs of the world which can feel overwhelming. Yet we should remember that the life of the Risen Christ goes on, and the love of God in Jesus Christ remains for us.

Loving Lord, your creation is beautiful and breath-taking. You create us with talents to use. In this time of anxious news, help us to rest in your arms, and to be more like you, so to comfort those who are distressed and worried.

For those who feel trapped at the moment in households where your love is missing, we pray for those and for the organisations who care for the homeless and vulnerable.

We pray that they and we may experience hope and reassurance, for we know that those who trust in you, Lord, will find their strength renewed.

In the name of Jesus we ask it. Amen.

Image © 2020 The Methodist Church from https://www.methodist.org.uk/our-faith/worship/lent-and-easter/lent-and-easter-resources/.
Reflection and Prayer © 2020 Matthew Earl.

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