February 2023

Time for God

I write this on an early wet dark evening in January. Candlemas marks the end of the Epiphany season and lights are once again lit reminding us to rekindle our faith as we enter the season of Lent. There are many challenges we face, as individuals, as churches and as a nation at this period in our history and it often feels like the light we are called to be is diminishing as we frantically try to fan the flame and remain forever hopeful.

Emmanuel, God with us, that we celebrated at Christmas however continues to walk with us, to bear our burdens and lighten our path. It is that companionship that keeps us going as the days lengthen and springtime appears. Jesus, our friend and companion is a powerful image – sharing life together with a friend involves vulnerability, conversation and time. That is what God longs from us.

The Christian promise is that we never face hardships alone, and there are plenty of reminders of God’s faithfulness around us. Our church buildings reflect centuries of prayer and worship, our beautiful landscape reflects a glorious creator, and our Christian witness can reflect good news.

This month set aside time for God, spend time in church or taking a walk with a new awareness that Christ is alongside you, and is interested in you, share your concerns in prayer and listen. As a diocese we are currently listening and praying for a hope filled vision to take us into the future and we want everyone to be part of that. Share together what you think God is saying about the challenges, and share it with us bishops too (drop us an email). Together we prepare to walk a Lenten journey, a journey in which we hope to discover new things and actively rekindle that friendship with Jesus we so often take for granted.

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