Dear Church Family
We've seen some surprising political events in the last 6 months. In the UK the political landscape has changed dramatically with a vote for Brexit and a new Prime Minister, and this week the US electorate have voted for Donald Trump as their President. Most people could not have forseen these things a few months ago, but here we are. We live in surprising times.
In the midst of surprising times, some react badly. Words are not always chosen carefully or spoken kindly. However Hilary Clinton modelled something powerful this week in being gracious in defeat and calling the US nation to get behind their new president.
In the midst of surprising times, some react fearfully. They worry that the world is falling apart. They fear for the future. But that is not what God wants. He wants people living in surprising and even troubled times to confidently declare: 'we will not fear' (Psalm 46:2). Why? Because they know that 'the Lord Almighty is with us, the God of Jacob is our fortress' (Psalm 46:7). It's the presence of God, known in Jesus Christ that gives us stability, hope and joy. Even in surprising times.
Past generations have had such faith, often in times of difficulty and even in war. We remember them today and this weekend, and particularly those who made the great sacrifice of giving up their lives for others. Let us remember them with respect, honour and thanksgiving. And let us do so knowing that at the heart of our faith is One who made the greatest sacrifice of all - His life for ours. He did this that we might know true peace (Psalm 48:9). His name is Jesus. And in surprising times, his Presence makes all the difference.