A Word in Your Ear
“But when he, the Spirit of truth, comes, he will guide you into all the truth.”
John 16:13 (NIV)
This month marks the official beginning of summer, regardless of what the weather may be doing. Thoughts of winter floods, rain, cold and snow have probably slipped back to the dusty corners of our minds so we may not remember that the Sochi Paralympics were less than three months ago in March. Our team GB did quite well compared to past performances. In the visually-impaired downhill skiing, Kate Gallagher and her guide won gold and Jane Etherington and her guide won silver.
Consider their achievement: if we closed our eyes and had someone telling us where to walk we might take a few hesitant steps forward and then – no further, thank you. Now think about what it would be like if we had to get into a car wearing a blindfold, maybe with just a modicum of light filtering through, and have someone in the seat beside us giving directions – and we were told to start driving at sixty miles an hour. I think we might suddenly discover we had an urgent appointment, open the car door and run for dear life. Yet these skiers with practically no vision were prepared to hurtle downhill at sixty to seventy miles an hour following behind a sighted guide who is issuing instructions to them through an earpiece.
The athletes may have aptitude, ambition and courage, but they won’t reach their goal without assistance from the guide and even that is not enough: they must have an absolute trust in the guide as they career down the snowy slopes and twist round the course.
You know where this is going: the scripture headline is a bit of a giveaway, and this is the Pentecost season. As Adam’s blind children, however hard we want to, we cannot make our own way through all the obstacles to the finishing line. We need our Guide. And we need absolute trust in him. He can see. He will speak to us and direct us. We can have faith in him, as God re-assures us: “I will lead the blind by ways they have not known, along unfamiliar paths I will guide them; I will turn the darkness into light before them and make the rough places smooth. These are the things I will do; I will not forsake them” (Isaiah 42:16). And so with David we pray:
You, Lord God, are my mighty rock and my fortress. Lead me and guide me, so that your name will be honoured. (Psalm 31:3 CEV)
Study by Hilary Buck
Grace Communion – Lewes
The Priory School
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