God of the unknown future, I trust you for today and tomorrow. Keep me looking to Jesus for the strength and courage I need. As the old song says: “Put your hand in the hand of the man who calmed the sea!” Pray God of the unknown future, I trust you for today and tomorrow. Keep me looking to Jesus for the strength and courage I need. God of the unknown future, I trust you for today and tomorrow. Keep me looking to Jesus for the strength and courage I need. While our nation, and much of the world are in lockdown to halt the spread of Covid-19, God’s Word tells us that he is in complete control. Each weekday during lockdown, we will bring you a new reflection highlighting God’s love and care for us, and his desire for us to know the peace of his son Jesus. FAITH OVER FEAR Read – Matthew 14:27-31 (NRSV) But immediately Jesus spoke to them and said, “Take heart, it is I; do not be afraid.” Peter answered him, “Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water.” He said, “Come.” So Peter got out of the boat, started walking on the water, and came toward Jesus. But when he noticed the strong wind, he became frightened, and beginning to sink, he cried out, “Lord, save me!” Jesus immediately reached out his hand and caught him, saying to him, “You of little faith, why did you doubt?” Reflect “We’ve never experienced anything like this before.” Fear of the unknown is one of our most basic human emotions. It’s a built-in survival instinct. Peter, the fisherman, had never seen anyone walking on water – let alone done it himself. He knew that water doesn’t support human weight – unless you are lying flat!! But spending time with Jesus, he had learnt that, however you might describe “normal life,” Jesus turns everything upside down. If Jesus encouraged him to walk on water, he would give it a go. And it worked. For a start, anyway. But Peter’s rational mind began to work overtime. People don’t walk on water. This can’t be happening. Look at those waves! Calling out to Jesus for help was the very best thing to do. Peter was no super-hero. Call him a realist. Circumstances got him rattled. Time and again he responded out of fear.…
I just can’t catch a break. I remember hearing my mum utter these words at her most stressful times when I was a kid. I also remember thinking, “Could it really be that bad?” Now that I’m adult, I better understand how my mum sometimes feels. There are days—and even weeks—when I just can’t seem to catch a break. Do you ever feel this way? Like you can’t keep up with all of life’s demands and responsibilities? Like there’s no time to rest?
In the face of adversity, such as the Covid-19 virus outbreak in China which is now a global health emergency, Chinese Christians find themselves drawing closer to God. During this time of home quarantine for the health and safety of all citizens, the authorities forbid all collective gatherings, imposed extended holidays for schools and companies and travel restrictions. Some cities have stepped up precautionary measures by allowing only one or two household members to leave the house to buy daily essentials every other day or once in five days.
I smiled at my little nephew, heart swelling with pride. There he was on the school stage, tie askew, singing “Rudolph the Red-nosed Reindeer” loudly and badly. He didn’t know the hand motions. He got carried away and sang the closing note for too long. And at one point he accidentally flopped his hand into the person next to him while getting too into the music. It was awful, and I was so proud. I was proud because he was fearless and bold and doing his best. And even beyond that, I was proud simply because I loved him. He could have shyly sung with his lips barely parted, and I would have felt the same kind of love.