Thought For The Week – 5th September

 Hmmm

I hadn’t thought of it like this but I’ve actually found a positive in the lockdown and Tier restrictions. We so often get so busy that we don’t have the time or opportunity to reflect.

I’m not inactive now but certainly have more time to reflect. It’s occurred to me that we are often so busy working for God that we neglect getting closer to God!

Yes, I know we say that from time to time and sermons can reinforce the challenge. We listen, acknowledge the problem, and eventually end up where we started – usually the next time doing something for God is in our routine schedule.

What do we do though when our usual routines and schedules are blown out of the water? Covid has yanked all the doing for God out of our hands and our practical day to day living has faced two unknowns.

The first being how do we continue with the vision God has given us for DBC. Online internet presence is a fantastic opportunity we probably wouldn’t have engaged with without covid restrictions. We would probably have remained seeing our online presence as being the website.

YouTube, Zoom, Teams, video conferencing, creating new materials for use online, using social media and telephone contact to support pastoral care might have occurred to one or two but probably would never have engaged the whole fellowship.

The second is more difficult and more of an individual challenge. Are we personally as close to God as we were before covid, have we slipped back a bit, or are we closer? How do we nourish ourselves in God’s presence?

Have we used the gaps in our old regular daily activities to spend more time with God – maybe not Bible Study or a fixed prayer time but focusing on experiencing God’s presence. Just allowing God to touch us – perhaps in just being silent and thinking about God, perhaps allowing His creation to stimulate gratitude and worship replacing our usual taking it for granted.

Perhaps using the YouTube services to find a time when we can really focus on God rather than the unintended pressure of getting ready to worship at 10:30 on a Sunday morning. If you’re a nerd like me you’ll see that YouTube access to the online service never peaks at 10:30 on a Sunday but grows steadily over the week or even the months. And reaches greater numbers than attend usual Sunday Services.

Perhaps we use the Sunday to see what else is happening – tv services, other churches. There is of course the danger that we become “consumer” Christians pursuing only what we feel comfortable with rather than facing and tackling the challenges God wants us to.

I don’t think I have all the answers except to realise that the covid restrictions are not all doom and gloom, that we can be positive, that we can still grow and mature in our relationship with God through Jesus.

What do you think?

Verse for Today – “Let us examine our ways and test them, and let us return to the LORD.” Lamentations 3:40 NIVUK

Don Brennan

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