The past couple of years have been particularly challenging for most of us. We have endured a pandemic, several life-changing storms, inflation, food insecurity, joblessness, and immeasurable mental distress. The world may feel like it’s falling apart. People feel more isolated and estranged from others unlike any period in recent history. We are all so worried about what the future holds and how we are all going to manage. People are unsure where to turn and who to turn to. Will we be able to afford our heating bill this winter? Will we be able to pay for gasoline for our cars? Will we lose our jobs because of the downturn in the economy? Will we be able to feed our families? What will happen if we get sick and there aren’t enough doctors and nurses to take care of us? What will we do?
None of the answers to these questions are easy. Every generation since the beginning of time has faced most of these questions throughout the ages. My grandfather was born in 1904. He lived through two world wars, the Great Depression, a tsunami, a polio outbreak, and numerous other life challenges. His generation didn’t have antibiotics that saved lives; didn’t have computers; didn’t have cell phones; didn’t have grocery stores; didn’t have physical money. My grandfather’s generation was so poor that as a country, they decided to give up sovereignty to join Canada as one way of trying to survive.
My grandfather and grandmother couldn’t afford the price of the train ticket to go to St. John’s to visit their only child when he was sick in hospital. My father spent months in hospital, all alone as a ten-year-old, away from his parents, 100 kilometres from home, to recover from a broken hip. Dad relied on the kindness of strangers to take care of him as a little boy. I can’t imagine the stress that both he and his parents went through during all those months of not knowing if he was well or being looked after properly. Yet, they had no choice! My grandparents had no money and dad had to be in hospital to survive his accident. An impossible situation that really created little choice for my grandparents, so they did the impossible and dad stayed in hospital until he was well enough to walk. As many of you may know, dad never recovered completely from his accident and had a severe limp for the rest of his life, but he lived a very successful life despite his injury.
Can you imagine not seeing your child for months?
I questioned my grandfather regarding how he managed to cope during this time of his life. His answer was said swiftly and softly. “My love, the only thing that got me through was my faith in God.” He went on to explain that he left all his loved ones in God’s capable hands. My grandfather then told me that as human beings, we had little control over the things that happen in our lives, but as Christians, through Jesus Christ’s sacrifice, we had a promise from God that he would see us through all the danger, sickness, turmoil, and tragedy that the world would throw at us. Jesus died so we might be saved! Have faith and all will be revealed when we go to heaven to be with God.
So, my friends, even though the world seems very dark and dangerous these days, remember to have faith. Our Lord and Saviour died for us, and even though we may not understand in this life why things happen, our covenant with God gives us comfort in times of trouble.
God bless you all.