17th March 2020

Weeping Or Singing A New Song - Or Both

(from www.churchofscotland.org.uk)

 

Psalms 137:1-4
Lament over the Destruction of Jerusalem
By the rivers of Babylon—
there we sat down and there we wept
when we remembered Zion.
On the willows there
we hung up our harps.
For there our captors
asked us for songs,
and our tormentors asked for mirth, saying,
“Sing us one of the songs of Zion!”
How could we sing the Lord’s song
in a foreign land?

In these strange days of Covid-19, with worship gatherings cancelled and all the things we’d normally do to show our care for one another now considered too risky, it’s so easy to feel dejected, perhaps even useless. (Ask me how I know that?) Isn’t it for such a time as this that we responded to God’s call to become ministers of the gospel? What is our purpose if not to reach out physically, spiritually and emotionally to those we are called to serve?
How can we sing the Lord’s Song in this new and strangest of lands?
What did God’s people do in exile? They sat down and wept. They cried out to the God of their ancestors to show them how to be God’s people in a foreign land.
As we find ourselves feeling exiled in these days, as we discover that the familiar songs and the familiar patterns are of no use in this foreign territory, may we take time to feel the loss. And then, from the midst of that loss, may we know God’s purpose for us as we embrace a new reality that we might never have imagined. God’s call has not diminished. The gospel imperative  to love one another is not diminished. Who knows what we might trip over in the darkness, who knows what discoveries we might make that will enable us now - and in the future - to BE church rather than simply do church?
Instead of rushing around trying to find ‘virtual’ ways of doing all the things we’d normally do, how about taking the time to sit down and weep? And then, follow God’s lead as we find new songs and new patterns and new vocations revealed by God who is in every age the ground of our being.
Stay safe, stay well, stay connected - for the love of God.

 


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