Trinity Sunday – and another Sunday with the churches closed and with people’s lives restricted.
The Trinity is a way to begin to understand the complexity and majesty and mystery of God, but this last week we also are reminded that we have to make sense of and engage with a world which needs understanding at different levels.
Locally and personally we face our challenges, and for some those challenges are severe, and made worse by the situation
As a community, we face challenges, closed buildings, children unable to gather in school or do sports etc, fires on the moor, and a tragedy in the Wayoh.
As a nation, we face challenges and we are divided politically and many who live in other parts of the country face much greater hardship generally than we do here.
As a world, there are massive challenges and again people are divided politically over whether to respond and how to respond. The United States, HongKong and China, the ongoing war and misery in Syria and the Middle East, locust swarms causing famine in Africa.
We have to think pastorally, hopefully, but also we have to engage with systems and structures (what Paul called principalities and powers).
The Trinity reminds us that God is God Almighty and our Father, that Jesus is Lord and lived among us, and that God’s Spirit is Holy and yet within us as God’s inner breath.
So I hope we will think more deeply about God but also think more deeply about how God calls us to understand and also engage in what is happening in our world including challenging injustice and unjust structures. It is easy to over-use the word “crisis” but this summer is likely to be a summer of multiple crises, for (some of) us as individuals, for decisions that affect our community and our country, and decisions that will affect the lives of millions for good or ill.
It is not easy to hold the personal, the local, the national and the global all together and sometimes what we want for ourselves or the local is not what is best or right for the world. Worship and prayer help us draw closer to God but this week we have seen the Bible and the Church misappropriated for political ends. This calls for wisdom and for courage.
In our prayers
We pray for the world – praying for rulers to lead with wisdom and integrity, praying for an end to inequalities, war, and hunger, and praying against all that divides and destroys,
We pray for our nation and communities, praying for all who work for the good of others, for our children and their education and future, for the sick and the vulnerable and all who care for them,
We pray for our families and neighbours and the people we know and love, remembering those who live with pain, those who are struggling in body, mind or spirit, those who grieve and all who are anxious.
Jesus commanded us to pray for ‘others’, to love and pray for our enemies, which is not easy, and we may struggle to find the words but it is important that we try, whether it is individuals we have fallen out with, those who cause trouble locally, those we disapprove of or those who abuse power in whatever way and at whatever level.
We should also give thanks and rejoice in what is good, and even in the crisis and the difficulties, there is much we can be grateful for.
Find three things each day to thank God for, and thank others who have enriched our lives in whatever way, young and old.
In this way, prayer becomes an adventure of faith as well as a deepening of faith. Pray to the Father through Jesus and in the power of his Spirit.