Ash Wednesday: The Bishop of Truro, the Rt Revd Tim Thornton, provided the first of our daily reflections for Lent.
And God said, “Let the waters under the sky be gathered together into one place, and let the dry land appear.” And it was so. Genesis 1:9
“And it was so.” God is the creator. He created the world and he created us. It is all too easy and natural for us to cut ourselves off from the world around us either literally or metaphorically. The reality of creation is something on which we need to reflect. This is God’s word and he creates. It was so and it is so. How do we connect with the reality of God’s creation? So much of our lives are lived apart from the reality as we fool ourselves into thinking and believing we are the centre of creation. How do you recognise and connect with the reality that God creates?
As we enter this Lent consider praying in a different place and in a different posture than the one you normally use for your daily prayers to connect differently with the reality of God’s creation all around you. “And it was so”.
Day Two: Our second reflection came from the Diocese of Truro (We asked for reflections from people in each diocese in the South West).
Then Moses stretched out his hand over the sea. The Lord drove the sea back by a strong east wind all night, and turned the sea into dry land; and the waters were divided. Exodus 14:21
Many people will recall the storms of last winter and will be hoping to be spared a repeat of such events. When one recalls the way in which the power of the sea was able to sever the rail link at Dawlish with such impunity, it is a timely reminder of the forces of nature set against human vulnerability, especially considering it is our carbon-fuelled lifestyle which contributes to the changing climate and increases the severity of our weather patterns. The Psalmist echoes this thought when he says “The floods have lifted up, O Lord, the floods have lifted up their voice; the floods lift up their roaring.” But then he goes on to say “More majestic than the thunders of mighty waters, more majestic than the waves of the sea, majestic on high is the Lord!” (Psalm 93:3-4). And looking to Jesus we see an example of his power over the elements when he calms the storm on the Sea of Galilee: “Then he got up and rebuked the winds and the sea; and there was a dead calm. They were amazed, saying, ‘What sort of man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey him?’” (Matthew 8:26-27). So God can and does intervene in the natural processes of the world – but we need to acknowledge our own vulnerability and our need to adopt a more humble approach to how we manage his world. We also need to remember our faith does make us immune to natural disasters – for God sends rain on the unjust as well as the just!
The Scripture quotations used are from the New Revised Standard Version of the Bible, Anglicized Edition, copyright 1989, 1995 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America, and are used by permission. All rights reserved.