Summer or winter?

Last week we had the most beautiful sunny days, cloudless skies and temperatures well over 16 degrees. Yesterday we had a bitterly cold wind and snow showers. Today is not quite so cold but I have not yet dared to put my baby tomato plants out again as they will be shivering in their beds!

The weather is always a great topic for conversation and even in lockdown it remains so- perhaps more so, as we all have so much more time to notice it, even if we are out in it less that in normal! But the changing nature of the weather led me to think about one of my favourite verses from the Bible

“The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning.”

This text comes from the book of Lamentations which is, exactly as you might imagine it to be, a bit of a moan. In fact, it is quite a serious moan that runs to five very depressing acrostic poems!  But right in the middle of all the woe is this gem about God’s faithfulness, his mercy, and his love. It is a line that is perhaps best well known as a hymn and is often a great favourite with congregations…

“Great is thy Faithfulness, O God my Father,

There is no shadow of turning with thee.

Thou changest not, thy compassions they fail not,

As thou hast been thou forever wilt be.”

The steadfastness of God, his total reliability and his unchanging love have been testified to by countless disciples through the ages. Unlike the weather, God does not change. He does not blow hot and cold. We, on the other hand, go up and down. We have good days and bad ones, high days of sunshine and laughter and then black days of rain and gloom. Particularly in lock down, you may have noticed your mood swings more. Without many of the distractions that so often help us and, with a general undercurrent of anxiety and fear, many are discovering that they are far more prone to emotional fluctuations. This is quite normal and whilst we may find it difficult and uncomfortable, we can take comfort from the fact that God never changes. He is always the same, ready each new morning to offer us his love and mercy, compassion, and presence. Little wonder that the Psalms often refer to God as our rock, a fortress and stronghold. He does not alter, he does not fail us, he does not give us misleading signals like the weather. He is the same, yesterday, today, and forever.

So, whether we have winter or summer today, whatever our mood, be it up or down, may we experience the peace that comes from knowing we have a constant and faithful God.  Let us come to him who will grant us his love, mercy, and all that we need, this day and new every morning.

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