Daily Notes to inspire and encourage over the Lent period.
Thursday 18 March – Wednesday 24 March 2021
Written by Emmanuel church members
Each week over the 40 days of Lent, we are adding a new set of reflections to encourage and inspire.
Here are the fifth set of reflections.
REFLECTION 30 - 18 MARCH
written by SM
But he was pierced for our transgressions,
he was crushed for our iniquities;
the punishment that brought us peace was on him, and by his wounds we are healed.
The violence of the words in this passage has always stood out to me. This is the reality of Jesus’ death, it was violent, torturous and agonising. And it was directly linked to our sin. This is the price Jesus willingly paid for us. Here it is prophesied by Isaiah, a reminder that this was not a sudden death, but God’s plan for our salvation. Our healing is directly caused by his wounds, how amazing is this seemingly contradictory idea? That we have access to peace, joy and wholeness because of the sacrifice of Jesus.
Our Saviour, we stand in awe at the vastness of your love for us. Help us to consider both the sacrifice you made as well as the peace you offer us. Amen.
REFLECTION 31 - 19 MARCH
Light in the Darkness
written by NG
The light shines in the darkness, but the darkness has not understood (overcome) it
The days at the beginning of Lent are short and dark. Like our journey with Christ we often feel we are in darkness, but as we journey Christ brings us closer and into the light. Looking forwards to Easter and the resurrection, days grow longer and we are blessed with light. John’s words encourage us, the light he speaks of is Jesus, he will come into the darkness and his light is too powerful for anything to stand against him.
Dear Lord Jesus, meet us where we are, reach down into the darkness and mess of our lives and bring us back to walk with you in the glorious light.
REFLECTION 32 - 20 MARCH
Fruit of the Spirit
written by PS
But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.
When our children were little, there were occasions when I would pray for “more of number 4”, by which I meant more of the fourth fruit of the Spirit, ie patience. In these days of home-schooling and lockdown I imagine that would be my permanent prayer at the moment.
It amazes me to think that God has allowed us through the Holy Spirit the means to become more like Him. The fruits of the Spirit reflect God’s character; Love “God is love”, Joy, Jesus says “My joy may be in you”, Peace “The Peace of God which transcends all understanding will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus”.
Jesus told his disciples that he was leaving them but that he would send the Holy Spirit, the Counsellor, to them.
My prayer is that the Holy Spirit will lead and guide us and change us, so that His fruit will develop God’s character in our lives. Amen
REFLECTION 33 - 21 MARCH
written by CG
The Father himself loves you because you have loved me and have believed that I came from God.
Lockdown has left many of us feeling lost and despondent, but there are occasions when one can be aware of God’s love and presence which can be a great comfort and reassurance. Jesus’ words to his disciples remind us that despite His time with them and His three years teaching, Jesus’ followers had not understood all that was about to happen at the cross. However, at this very late stage, Jesus accepts that they have finally understood and reassures them and us of the Father’s love.
Father, we thank you for your word that speaks of your love for us even when we do not always understand what is happening around us. Help us to that deeper understanding that You are in control and we can put our trust in You.
REFLECTION 34 - 22 MARCH
Children of God
written by KO
Jesus said to them, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these...”
People often criticised Jesus for spending too much time with the ‘wrong people’ – tax collectors, sinners, the sick and children. They thought instead he should be with the rich or strong in faith as it would help build Him a reputation. Jesus cares for the weakest and most vulnerable among us. He said ‘let the children come to me and do not stop them, for the Kingdom of God belongs to such as these’. When choosing this verse, it reminded me of Simplicity (song by Rend Collective), which has the lyric ‘give me a childlike heart’.
Reflecting on this verse, we can pray for three things: childlike curiosity, willingness to include others and strengthening of our faith. Amen
REFLECTION 35 - 23 MARCH
written by JS
2 SAMUEL 22:29
You, Lord, are my lamp; the Lord turns my darkness into light.
When Jesus was crucified the earth was plunged into darkness. But on Easter morning the light came on forever. Where and when has your life been plunged into darkness? Or perhaps, the darkness has gradually invaded your life and now as you look around, what once was a colourful life now seems shades of grey.
Are you willing to let go of your darkness today and give it to God, and allow him to bring back the light, and colour into those parts of your life again? Go on, trust him…. for He is good
Dear Lord, bring your light and colour into our dark places
REFLECTION 36 - 24 MARCH
written by AD
“I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.”
Everything Jesus learned from his Father he made known to his disciples and so, through their writings, to us…
Do we value the bible, do we treasure it?
Do we read it expectantly, trusting that we will meet with the Lord through its pages?
Father, forgive us when we take for granted our ability to pick up and read your Word. Instil in us a hunger, a fervent desire to seek, to learn and to put into practice your teachings.
Your Word is a lamp
for my feet
and a light
for my path.