October 2020 

Written by Rev Canon Nigel Mason

One of the things my old grannie used to enjoy in life was planning holidays; she always looked forward to them, in fact, we concluded it was the anticipation that brought her most joy, rather than the holiday itself.

We all, from time-to-time, need to create plans.  They bring order to our lives and ensure we have time to prepare and things to look forward to.  These advance markers help bring order to our lives.  My mum would start the day with a question: “What is the plan of action?”  The reply, more often than not, was the “same as yesterday.”

In the last few days, many of us will have seen the news, heard updates, the latest guidelines and restrictions as the government attempts to bring the pandemic under control. Of course, the time you read this article, things may have changed and new lock-down rules may be in place.  

Throughout this crisis, one of the most difficult things, is to plan for the future.  For example, many are wondering how our Christmas will be and who we might spend it with.  I particularly feel for those who are wanting to get married. Many had to cancel for this year and those who did go ahead were subject to regular changes. Adding to this uncertainty there are other factors, such as the economy, the environment and the ongoing Brexit settlement.  Our opportunity to plan with any certainty is limited and our lives are constantly subject to change.  

For me, faith in a God who does not change is one of those few constants in my life.  Throughout the pages of the Bible we are reminded of a God who is unchanging, faithful and his plans for the world remain constant and unaffected by many of the things that cause us uncertainty and anguish.

As we look through the pages of the Bible, we discover God has laid out his plan and future destination of a world; a world that in so many ways seems to be at odds with how we might imagine God would want it to be. Yet, in time, it will become the way as many of us would like, a world restored, a world at peace and a world that comes together; no longer nations at odds and countries having their power struggles:  The Book of Revelation says: “The kingdoms of this world have become the kingdoms of our Lord and of His Christ, and He shall reign forever and ever!”

One day this pandemic will pass, along with so much of what we fear and worry about; in difficult times we have hope.  Whilst, I cannot see my own personal path through this life, I have always found a quote by Willis Ray helpful to me at times like this, “We know not what the future holds, but we know who holds the future.”