It has been suggested that it might be helpful to have the occasional Thought for the Day on the website which can be used for personal reflection during this time of crisis. The following is the first of these.
‘We shall not be overcome’ is one of the revelations of Julian of Norwich. The poem ‘Spirit of Affirmation’ is offered as an encouragement to all of us as we continue our journey through Lent, a journey which is increasingly difficult this year. As each line begins ‘I am …’, it’s worth remembering that in John’s Gospel, which contains all the ‘I am’ sayings of Jesus, (I am the way, the truth and the life; I am the bread of life etc.) John is pointing his readers to the words of God to Moses, (Exodus 3.13-14) when Moses asks God ‘What is your name?’ God replies: ‘I AM WHO I AM’. So when Jesus says ‘I AM … ‘ he reveals his understanding of his divine nature. However rocky the road ahead, we have the assurance that God travels with us every step of the way through our fellow traveller and constant companion, Jesus Christ.
We shall not be overcome
Though we are in such pain, trouble and distress, that it seems to us that we are unable to think of anything except how we are and what we feel, yet as soon as we may, we are to pass lightly over it, and count it as nothing. And why? Because God wills that we should understand that if we know him and love him and reverently fear him, we shall have rest and be at peace. And we shall rejoice in all that he does.
I understood truly that our soul may never find rest in things below, but when it looks through all created things to find its Self, it must never remain gazing on its self, but feast on the sight of God its maker who lives within.
He did not say, ‘You shall not be tempest-tossed, you shall not be work-weary, you shall not be discomforted.’ But he said, ‘You shall not be overcome.’ God wants us to heed these words so that we shall always be strong in trust, both in sorrow and in joy.
Julian of Norwich
Spirit of Affirmation
I am the way that stretches out before,
I am the journey you are on,
I am the present moment that you tread,
I am the next place that you stand upon.
I am the air you breathe –
I am every part and of the whole,
I am the love you cannot fall beyond –
I am the inner silence of your soul.
I am the question that you ask –
I am the answer that you crave,
I am the reality of truth,
I am the ever-living thread that leaps the grave.
I am all time in now,
I am this minute to begin,
I am the one that you have always known,
I am the peace that you may dwell within.