Letter from Jon, October 2020
God is our refuge and strength,
An ever-present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way
and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea…
…The Lord Almighty is with us;
The God of Jacob is our fortress.
Over the last weeks of LOL on Sunday mornings we have been learning some, mostly short, memory verses, with the hope that we would become more familiar and confident with God’s written Word and be able to bring to mind verses at times when we really need them. Memorising verses and passages in the Bible is something I have done for many years and Psalm 46 has been one of my ‘go to’ passages on so many occasions – not least in this current season!
It is not an understatement to say that we are living through the most difficult times that the majority of us have ever experienced. A year ago none of us had even heard of Covid-19 and yet now it seems to dominate the news, our lives and our world, and just when we thought we were coming out of it, it would appear that the prospect of a second wave through winter threatens greater restrictions and lockdown.
In these times I believe we need, more than ever, the anchor of God’s Word in our lives. We are surrounded by news and opinions, much of which breeds fear, uncertainty and hopelessness. Right now I believe we need the hope of God’s Word washing over us regularly. We need to read the Gospels and focus our lives again on Jesus. We need the Psalms with all their beauty and raw emotion. We need the hope and guidance of the letters of Paul and others. We need the Bible to speak into our lives and situations, to bring hope instead of fear and truth instead of opinion. Can I encourage you, if you don’t already do this, to find time to simply read the Bible, or to listen to it with the many apps that are available, and to start to memorise verses or even passages. My experience is that simply going over a few memory verses can change your perspective, your attitude, your day.
God gave us his Word not as a rule book but as something that reveals who He is and how he loves us and interacts with us, his dearly loved children; a book of hope and truth; a book that reveals Jesus and speaks of God’s great plans and purposes. Now, more than ever, I believe we need to take this amazing gift of his Word and let it set the foundation of our lives. Allow me to finish with another of my memory verses from the psalms:
The Lord is my light and salvation – whom shall I fear?
The Lord is the stronghold of my life – of whom shall I be afraid?
Much love and blessing