Remembering

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From the Manse.....

Back in my Infant School days when Halloween was something that was done 'over there' in America, I can still recall singing along with my friends; "Remember, remember, the fifth of November" as we looked forward to the excitement of bonfire night.

At that young age I didn't know how the rest of the rhyme went "Remember, remember, the fifth of November, Gunpowder, treason and plot! If you can't give us one, we'll take two; the better for us and the worse for you!" nor of course appreciate that it commemorated religious intolerance and sectarian violence in the early 17th century.

As we move through the tail end of October into the month of November, we find ourselves in a period when we do indeed reflect, recall and remember.

On Armistice Day and Remembrance Sunday, we will at 11:00am in silence and respect, remember and respond to the words of Laurence Binyon;
"They shall grow not old, as we that are left grow old:
Age shall not weary them, nor the years condemn.
At the going down of the sun and in the morning
We will remember them
."

All Saints and All Hallows also give us the opportunity to remember and in more 'normal years and circumstances' we would have been holding our own services of remembrance at this time, gathering to remember and give thanks to God those whom we still love but see no longer.

As the days grow shorter and the nights longer and darker, our thoughts naturally turn to the months that have past and what has been as we head towards the end of the year. This year, 2020 a year that we couldn't imagine turning out as it has when it first started.

As we continue to be battered and shaken by politics and pandemic alike and we wonder when all this will end, may we find hope, help and comfort in some words of God as found in the book of Isaiah, who reminds us that God has not forgotten us and that he continually remembers us, for he has written our names on the palm of his hand. (Isaiah 49:16)

May we remember that God is always with us and in that eternal truth, find strength not only for this day but for all days.

Love and God Bless

Keith

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