28 February 2021
God’s Unchangeable Word!
The Collect: O God, whose glory it is always to have mercy: Be gracious to all who have gone astray from Your ways, and bring them again with penitent hearts and steadfast faith to embrace and hold fast the unchangeable truth of Your Word, Jesus Christ Your Son, who with You and the Holy Spirit, lives and reigns, one God, for ever and ever. Amen.
Reflection: On Ash Wednesday, at the start of this Lenten season, we asked God to “create and make in us new and contrite hearts.” Then, last Sunday, we asked Him “to help us who are assaulted by many temptations.” Some of us must have given in to those temptations for, here we are, not even two weeks later, asking God “to be gracious to all who have gone astray.” We are pleading with God, who is always merciful, to meet us with patience, forgiveness and love and to be gracious and understanding to all who have strayed from His ways and to restore them to the flock of the faithful.
So often in life, even though the way seems perfectly clear, we make a wrong turn. We think we can make it on our own. We forget about God and focus instead on our own desires, our own priorities, our own abilities, strength and determination, only to find that we are heading down the wrong path We have lost our way. Without anyone to guide and support us, we end up in a place where we feel anxious and afraid. Finally, we come to the realisation that we cannot manage our own lives and that we must discard the flawed blueprint we have drawn up for ourselves as reliance on our own intellect, emotions, good intentions and willpower, will never be sufficient to overcome our sinful nature. We need the Word of God, the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ, to work within us to accomplish His will for our lives.
When our problems and fears lead us into small, dark places, we struggle to hold fast to the unchangeable truth in God’s Word. We know that His Word, the Word of the Father Himself, connects us to the love and saving sacrifice of His Son, Jesus Christ. His Word brings us to faith and keeps us in faith. It is our faith in God which brings transformation to our lives for faith changes our perspective, gives us a new outlook on life and reinforces our capacity to manage our lives.
Despite our sinfulness, God promises us a place in His kingdom. His mercy and grace are gifts that should cause us to fall down in worship and adoration, for it is His grace and mercy that will keep us on track when we find ourselves straying.
So, in this Lenten season, if and when we go astray, and God calls us to forgiveness, reconciliation and restoration, let us “with penitent hearts and steadfast faith” hold fast to the unchangeable truth of His Word, remembering always, that when we hear the Word of God, and embrace it, and share it with others we will be blessed.
Meditation: The Word of God endures forever, in marked contrast to the glory of man and his word, which is like, “the flower of grass. The grass withers and the flower falls”. (1 Peter 1: 24 – 25)
Prayer: O God, may we always hold fast to Your unchangeable Word, believe in Your wonderful provision for the sinner, and trust in Christ and His shed-blood as the only means of salvation. Amen.
The St. Jude’s Writers
St. Jude’s Church
Anglican Diocese of Jamaica and The Cayman Islands
28 February 2021