THOUGHT FOR THE WEEK 18th January 2017.
The weather last week was cold and wintry with many parts of the UK under serious threat of really bad weather. Those living on the east coast especially were encouraged to leave their homes as 60 years ago this month floods deluged that same area when tragically over 300 lives were lost and 24,000 homes were damaged. Winter took its toll in many hospitals with many unable to cope with the increased demand on its services. Theresa May had a hard time at Prime Minister’s Questions defending the NHS against the Red Cross statement that the health service was experiencing a humanitarian crisis. With other storms brewing across the pond as Mr Trump’s inauguration as President of the USA takes place with unsubstantiated and yet damaging claims that emerged regarding his past which were in the end unfounded. Many groups so we are told are likely to be protesting on Friday despite the fact that the President elect was, after all, democratically elected.
In a fast changing world and when problems and anxieties arise in our own lives we need to remember that the sun still shines behind the clouds. Already there are signs of new beginnings as days begin to lengthen and the spring flowers push their way through the hard winter soil. The Bible assures us that God’s encouragement is real and effective when we trust and believe that the light of God is more powerful that the darkness of doubt and dissent. David, who wrote most of the Psalms is an example of someone who often got things wrong, yet knew the peace and the joy of forgiveness which are gifts of God’s grace. That’s the recurring theme of Psalm 34 ‘I sought the Lord’ said David ‘and He answered me; he delivered me from all my fears’ No shadow of doubt here, just the assurance that God is on the throne despite the darkness and uncertainly that clouded his life. More than that the Lord speaks to David’s heart and to ours embracing us with his love and protection and giving the assurance that ‘those who seek the Lord will lack no good thing’ and that’s enough to dispel all our winter blues!