I am writing this letter during a very unusual phase of the 21st Century history that has brought about a myriad infection rate of the covid19 impacting heavily on a large global scale forcing humanity to re-align priorities to remain on course. Recently, Northampton hosted a big Town Festival event held at the Racecourse, during early August and offered a full fun-filled weekend for the families, with hot air balloons, giant funfair, entertainment arena, live music and more. This was an important event to help deal with levels of anxieties created by the pandemic, climate change, and a high rising number of unemployment, loss of many lives and the influx of refugees from some nations of the world.
However, we shouldn’t forget also that there are good things that have happened giving us a reason to celebrate and be grateful to God especially when it comes to saving lives.
Allow me to draw your attention to a scripture that theologically responds to some events. Job 2: 7-9 is one of the readings for 3rd of October. While Matthew 5:45 alongside Job 2, both examine ways that disasters demand a Christian theological response. It is my strong belief that God works with believers to bring about good out of bad situations. This is done by sharing the message of good news. And if there are those who think God abandoned their loved ones during the pandemic, they would have a reason to appreciate and allow themselves to be inspired by Job’s life experiences.
Just pause and see for yourself exactly what Satan is challenging you on. Please do not forget that you will be chastised by your persistence for what you stand for. There are also those who will seem to be so exasperated that God has not kept their loved ones in the favoured condition that they deserve. As human beings we shall always face trouble or adversity. When that happens, face it with integrity, and faithfulness. What amazing, faithful words as Job sits on an ash heap, scraping his painful sores on his body, contemplating the death of his children and loss of his wealth and possessions! Such a scenario took prominence during the nineteen months of uncertainties. Under such circumstances I trust, personal endurance develops building into one’s faith.
From a theological perspective I tend to believe that God works with believers to bring good out of bad situations. And despite the negative impact of covid19, climate change, conflict of war and effects of war, we can work together missiological to bring hope in midst of disasters. I do pray that our spiritual eyes will always remain open to whatever mission opportunities God is presenting to us as a circuit to grow his Kingdom in Northampton.
I do wish everyone returning from summer holidays God’s blessing and our Presbyters, Deacons and Lay Preachers across the connexion, reporting in their new stations, a fruitful Methodist connexional year filled with all sufficient grace.
God bless us all. May we be a blessing within and beyond God’s Church, for the transformation of the world.
Revd Francis M’ Itiiri