In the Church’s calendar we are roughly half way through the Church year and are now in the season of Trinity. From now until the Sunday’s before Advent the lectionary readings direct us to think of the life and ministry of Jesus. During the season of Trinity the liturgical colours in the Church turn to green, and along with the scripture readings, we are encouraged to reflect upon how we can grow in our faith.
I know from my own personal experience and from listening to others, there are times in our lives when we find it difficult to ‘grow’. In fact there are times when it can be difficult to see God at all. However, as the mist and fog disappeared this morning and the sun broke through, so Jesus can do the same. When we ask Him for help and we lean fully on Him, the Son of God can break through the thickest and most difficult situation and shine upon us. Thus giving us light and hope, and allowing us to see things very differently.
The words of the hymn ‘Great is thy faithfulness’ (hymn 80), is based upon Lamentations 3:22-24 “It is of the Lord's mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness. The Lord is my portion, saith my soul; therefore will I hope in him.” The writer of this hymn, Thomas Chisholm, decided to follow Jesus when he was 27, and by the age of 36 he was ordained. After only one year in ordained ministry he had to retire due to ill health, but this did not hinder him from writing many poems and hymns. Towards the end of his life and upon reflecting on what God had done in his life, Chisholm wrote “I must not fail to record here the unfailing faithfulness of a covenant-keeping God and that He has given me many wonderful displays of His providing care, for which I am filled with astonishing gratefulness.”
Even amongst the mist and fog of life, we must never forget the faithfulness of God and the love that He has for each of us. May each of us be able to say wholeheartedly the words of verse 3 of Chisholm’s hymn:
Pardon for Sin and a peace that endureth,
Thine own dear presence to cheer and to guide,
Strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow
Blessings all mine, with ten thousand beside!