Beauty surrounds us, but we usually need to be walking in a garden to know it - Rumi
Oh dear, another blank page day! How is it that some people can post thoughtful, inspiring blogs each day; whilst others can write uplifting sermons running to 1500 words for two services on a Sunday in addition to their other work, when all I can do is stare at an empty screen trying to think of 500 words that might be useful, helpful reflections for you to think about during the week. My mind is just blank! Perhaps instead of staring at the screen I should use the time to pray to ask God what He wants me to write. After all the words may be mine but the inspiration is His.
But life is a bit like that. Not everything runs smoothly, there are ups and downs along the way in every well-ordered family, society or indeed the world outside. For example, the weather here in the last few weeks has been relatively mild so that we have been led to believe that Spring was on its way. Some of the daffodils are in bloom as are the little crocuses; the roses are in bud, too. Earlier in the week I saw Mrs Blackbird on the lawn with a bundle of straw in her beak; she was off to build a nest somewhere to lay her eggs and in due time to fledge her chicks. New life! Hope! Hurrah! Then this morning we awoke to a covering of snow with more severe weather from Siberia promised to follow over the next week. What then will happen to the blackbird family? Will they survive? Perhaps just as importantly, how will those living rough on the streets cope with this harsh weather? Will they survive? At least one rough sleeper has died of hypothermia in a nearby town recently.
Yet even in the darkest of times there is hope. At the death of her brother Lazarus, a really dark time for Martha and her sister Mary, Jesus told Martha, ‘I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die; 26 and whoever lives by believing in me will never die. John 11:25-26 and then He asked her: Do you believe this?’ Well, do you? Do I? That is a hard question to answer but it is only by answering “Yes” that we will find hope in the dark times. We need to believe, beyond what our eyes see and our heart feels, in God who, with love and compassion for each and every one of His Creatures – man, bird or beast, brings eternal life, hope, and light.
So you see my prayer was answered: “Do not worry about what to say or how to say it. At that time you will be given what to say,” Matthew 10:19 (NIV) Thanks be to God!
Peter is a father and a grandfather who has been retired from full time employment for a number of years