As for me, I look to the Lord for help. I wait confidently for God to save me, and my God will certainly hear me.
Matthew 4:18-20 NLT
God is forgiveness. We cannot justify or excuse our past mistakes or sinful behaviour. God forgives and forgets. Memory is located in my brain alone. If I tell God about a past sin, he doesn’t know to what I refer. Yet, I’m agonising over what I dislike about myself, or my reactions to people or situations. I’m investing time and effort in unproductive reflections. Better to look to God, acknowledging I struggle with certain attitudes and events, yet placing my confidence in God’s ability to work with me in navigating the course of my life.
A big challenge in my life has been securing the trust of others. Recently, at a significant birthday of a dear friend, as we prayed and encouraged him, I found myself saying that apart from my wife, he was one of very few people who had demonstrated total trust in me. This was a significant realisation for me and, I assume, for him. Yet, regardless of where I find myself in life, socially, economically, psychologically, I can know that my spiritual health is sound as I look to God for support.
The world offers a harsh environment within which to eke out our life. Employment is difficult to find, permanent contracts rare, the cost of living rising and housing moving beyond the reach of many. Kindness seems to me to be thin on the ground, while many who I meet and who write to me describe heart-breaking circumstances. It appears at best politicians have no practical answers, and at worst are caught up in their micro Westminster world. So many I know feel abandoned, alone and frightened. But many churches and Christians express God’s love through ministries that offer encouragement, hope and practical support in response to the pain that grows all around.

 Who do you know that would say ‘Life is very hard right now’?
 Lord God, may I, as part of your body here on earth, be an instrument of encouragement and love to people who are hurting today.