Thought for the Day from Gill Griggs of St Chad’s:
The Exodus tells us that the Israelites were approaching Canaan, -probably with some measure of fear – but God had given them clear instructions about what He wanted them to do. They were to build the sanctuary according to detailed specifications, and to furnish it lavishly. The Ark was to be made of acacia wood, and inside the Ark would be the Testimony, (the Tablets with the 10 Commandments),, which God was giving His people .
The Gospel reading sees God relating to His people in a different way. They were by that time part of the Roman Empire. Zechariah, the father of John the Baptist, was filled with the Holy Spirit, and prophesied that the people would be saved from their enemies to serve God in holiness and virtue. The child, born to Zechariah and his wife, Elizabeth, was to give people ‘knowledge of salvation through the forgiveness of their sins.’. Their feet would be guided into the way of peace.. For the Israelites this was to be a time of change- a time of crisis.The child, John, filled with the Spirit, was to bring people to salvation and prepare them for the forgiveness of their sins..
We may think that we, too, are similarly living through a time of crisis and change. I wonder if we, today, have a sense that God is with us and that, once again, He is speaking to His people. I have heard it asked, usually rhetorically, whether life is ever going to revert to so-called normal living when the coronavirus is over. Do you think that we have discovered any new values in our lives? It may be that in these days of distancing ourselves from others, we miss such simple things as the giving and receiving of a hug. Have we made discoveries about what things are truly important to us?