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Thursday 30th April 2020

Thursday 30th April 2020

Good morning Friends,

I wonder how you are doing, as these weeks of lockdown continue?

I know some folks are managing to keep a positive attitude, others I know have as they say “their moments” where they suddenly feel a little overwhelmed.

As the epidemic continues we are hearing of people we know who have contracted the virus, and sadly some of those acquaintances, or friends, or family members have died.

During these times I am in contact with people by telephone, or text, or e-mail, and so often I have heard folks say, “I don’t know where I’d be without my faith”

So many, in the midst of these days, are placing their hope and their faith in God.

Almost every morning these words from Scripture are on my lips.

“ The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases, his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.” Lamentations 3:22-23

As we make our way through our reflections on the Fruit of the Spirit, we come to Faithfulness.

Faithfulness is such a rich word, and when we look into its meaning, we discover words like loyal, constant, devoted, or steady in allegiance or affection.

As I was reading up on faithfulness, I noticed that steadfast love and faithfulness are mentioned together several times in the Bible, especially in the book of Psalms.

“Your steadfast love, O Lord, extends to the heavens, your faithfulness to the clouds.” – Psalm 36:5 (ESV)

“But you, O Lord, are a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness.” – Psalm 86:15 (ESV)

“For your steadfast love is before my eyes, and I walk in your faithfulness.” – Psalm 26:3 (ESV)

“I will sing of the steadfast love of the Lord, forever; with my mouth I will make known your faithfulness to all generations.” – Psalm 89:1 (ESV)

God’s faithfulness to us is perfect because it is underpinned by His steadfast love for us.

As we come to a deeper understanding of God’s faithfulness, then our response is a growing faithfulness to him.

We remember, though, faithfulness is not something we earn or gain by our own doing. Like the other Fruit of the Spirit, faithfulness is developed in us by the Holy Spirit Himself.

In order to understand this Jesus has words to help us.

Jesus told his friends, “Abide in me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit by itself, unless it abides in the vine, neither can you, unless you abide in me.” John 15:4

Jesus is the true vine, and as we spend time with Him, He will grow fruit in and through us, faithfulness included. He wants to pour out His faithfulness in us so that it overflows into faithful discipleship and friendship with others.

These are days like no other we have ever faced, but, we do not face them alone.

We have our Lord to guide us, and we have one another to encourage us.

May God hold you in his faithful hand today and always.

All the way my Saviour leads me, What have I to ask beside? Can I doubt His tender mercy, Who through life has been my Guide? Heav'nly peace, divinest comfort, Here by faith in Him to dwell! For I know, whate'er befall me, Jesus doeth all things well; For I know, whate'er befall me, Jesus doeth all things well.

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