Wednesday, March 22, 2023
Love Thy Neighbour

Love Thy Neighbour

Ready to take his place?: Jeremy Corbyn

The Prime Minister caught us all by surprise in calling in ‘snap’ general election on 8th June. It’s now just a matter of weeks before we cast our votes and with the party manifestos being published shortly the campaigns will then really take off. With so many opinion polls already confident of the outcome of the election it will be interesting to see if in the remaining weeks there will any change in their predictions. Is it a foregone conclusion that Mrs May will be staying at No 10 with an increased majority in Parliament or will there be an unexpected turn of events that will see Mr Corbyn walking into Downing Street? We will just have to wait and see. The problem with opinion polls is that in recent elections they have been way off target. ‘Too close to call’ was the confident prediction of the polls at the last general election. ‘Brexit’ caught the polls and most of us by surprise and Mr Trump – what can we say? This time around we are told that there are new and more reliable systems of analysing the possible outcomes, but in the end the poll on 8th June is the only one that really matters.

I have met so many in my Ministry who have been casualties of situations that life has thrown at them often completely out of the blue. The sudden loss of a loved one, a friendship that became strained, a relationship which has broken down and the hurt and distance that has followed. Life is more often than not as unpredictable as the best measured political poll because in the end we don’t really know what’s around the corner. Mrs May caught the whole political establishment by surprise last week and take all the poll predictions with more than that pinch of salt!

The Bible gives us sound advice as far as the unpredictability of life is concerned while at the same time giving us the assurance that whatever happens we are never alone. A very familiar Psalm says of God is our Shepherd who cares for us in whatever situations we find ourselves. We are encouraged as well to live at peace with all we meet along the way of our lives and to fulfil the calling of loving God and our neighbour as we love ourselves. That’s why the words of a motto card I had in Sunday school so many years ago remain so true and relevant. In bold letters it says ‘Do the good that you can, to all the people you can, in all the ways you can, as long as you can.’ Seems to me that if we do just that then whatever life brings we know that we will have done our best and can face an unknown future with renewed confidence and hope.

Reverend David Jones

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