St John the evangelist
in the heart
of the surrey hills
Revd. Grundy has reluctantly taken the decision to suspend services at St. John's for January, because of the current surge in instances of Coronavirus.
Services will continue on the website with contributions from Wotton clergy, and others.
for week beginning 18th January
Even the darkness is not dark to you; the night is bright as the day, for darkness is as light to you. Psalm 139:11-12
In New England, where I come from, we call this time of year "the long drag". The trees are bare, the days are cold and bleak, and the nights long and dark. Spring, with its promise of new life seems a long way away. It is hard at this time of year to feel energetic or optimistic.
It’s the darkness that we find particularly depressing. Christians tend to associate darkness with sin, blindness and fear. We long for Christ, the light of the world to come into our lives and dispel the darkness in our hearts and our lives. It’s hard to feel close to God when you can’t see where you are going, or what that noise in the distance means, or who might be approaching you.
At first glance, scripture has little good to say about darkness. But a closer look shows that some of God’s most important work occurs at night. When Abraham despaired of ever having offspring, God led him outside and told him to count the stars saying, “So shall your descendants be”. Were it not for the night, we would never see the beauty of the stars. Joseph dreamt of a ladder from earth to heaven at night. And the two most important events in the Christian calendar, the birth of our Saviour and his resurrection both
I find that some of my best thoughts come at night or just before dawn, when there is little else to distract me. If you ever wake up in the middle of the night, try lying in the dark, listening for God. You may discover states of consciousness you have never experienced before. As the psalmist has said, “Day to day pours forth speech, and night to night declares knowledge” (19:2).
God our Father, we know you are with us at all times of the day and the night. Help us to open our hearts and minds to your presence that we may hear and respond to your message of love, healing and hope. Amen