All Saints Oving

Message from the Vicar

Dear Friends,

Someone said once, “It’s a good thing to have all the props pulled out from under us occasionally. It gives us some sense of what is rock under our feet, and what is sand.”

We’ve all had times in our lives when things seem uncertain – job insecurity, family troubles, unforeseen illness, a vehicle breakdown, financial pressures and so on. Life can seem more insecure with the tensions we face in an uncertain world. The recent atrocities in Manchester and London shocked the nation, the heart-breaking and devastating fire at Grenfell Tower in Kensington was horrifying, and then all the uncertainties surrounding our own government following the general election, where those who won really lost and those who lost really won – or something like that, seemed to confound our feelings of insecurity even more!

In all of this, we have seen something remarkable. In the midst of devastating human suffering, whole communities have come together in sacrificial acts of love, support and care. Many thousands of people have turned to God in prayer and encouraged others to do the same, as we have searched for answers amidst all the turmoil around us.

Our nation is at an interesting time in history. Some would say we are in a precarious position and are vulnerable both inside and out to forces beyond our control. There has been a lot of scaremongering by people on all sides of the political spectrum… soft Brexit, hard Brexit, more austerity to grow the economy, no more austerity to grow the economy. Claims and counter claims, social media mania! During the election campaign, Facebook was saturated with insults, insinuations, accusations, fake news, bias news, axes to grind and agendas to promote!

In the middle of all this, her majesty, Queen Elizabeth II, has some interesting insights to share: “Flistory teaches us we need saving from ourselves, from our recklessness or our greed. God sent into the world… neither a philosopher or a general…but a saviour with the power to forgive.” Our queen has demonstrated a stability and consistency throughout her life, which is an example to us all.

One of the great themes of the Bible is ‘hope’. Not a “hope so” kind of attitude. Hope in the Bible leads to a certainty for today and a security for tomorrow that confidently says, “whatever circumstances I face in life, and whatever uncertainty surrounds me, God offers steadfast love, unmovable truth, and an unshakable peace, even in the most desperate of times.”

As we enjoy our summer together, may you know the security of the hope that faith in God offers, freely, with no strings attached. A hope that emerges out of the darkness and offers light, peace, love and a future.

God’s blessings on you all,

Rev’d Steve