Day 4 Trust: Do not be afraid, believe
- Acts 27:23-26
“For last night there stood by me an angel of the God to whom I belong and whom I worship, and he said, ‘Do not be afraid, Paul; you must stand before the emperor; and indeed, God has granted safety to all those who are sailing with you.’ So keep up your courage, men, for I have faith in God that it will be exactly as I have been told. But we will have to run aground on some island.”
- Psalm 56
- Luke 12.22-34
Assailed on every side, I long for a more sustaining image of You God. I need You closer than ever, to be with me through these current horrors. Our dialogue has become coarse and aggressive and I find it difficult to listen to any news and current affairs. Bad news seems everywhere, abuse, cruelty of unspeakable proportions, political divisions and a vortex of hate that creeps into so much of what we do. Are You alone in listening?
Where am I to find hope? Where should I look? How can I find a route towards healing when I have no sense of what a hopeful future looks like? And yet You speak into this space from below. I am carried even without knowing it, and I can only just sense Your hold on me. Lifting me, stroking my doubt into a soft glow of warmth that might eventually become something more.
‘Don’t be afraid’ is easily said. So I need to trust You again and again, and hold on to what little I see. For I sense You near me, and I long for Your word from long ago, which is still alive in me in Your Saints and incarnate Son.
I am floating and at sea
Without direction and fearful of what lies ahead
I come to You, known and yet unknowing
Rising and falling
bring me to a safe haven
a place where I can begin
to hope again
to trust again
in You and others.
Almighty God, our personal suffering leads us to cry out in pain and we shrink in fear when we experience sickness, anxiety or the death of loved ones. Teach us to trust You. May the churches we belong to be signs of Your providential care. Make us true disciples of Your Son who taught us to listen to Your word and to serve one another. In confidence we ask this in the name of Your Son, and in the power of the Holy Spirit. Amen.
- What are the images of God that sustain you through times of questioning?
- Where are the places and who are the people who give you hope for the future?
Go and Do
Global: Be inspired by those who show much resilience in the face of the storm.
Local: Set up a local group from your churches and community who commit to a deeper listening to one another.
Personal: Spend time with the people or in the place that give you most hope.