Sadly but understandably The New Wellwynd and other churches will not be open for private prayer today but as I keep reminding ourselves, "the voice of prayer is never silent".
I will keep the daily prayers going at 12 noon here at the manse and I will keep sharing readings and prayers because we need them at this time more than ever.
I usually share three daily lectionary readings but today I am only sharing one because it seems to say what I believe we need to hear at this time.
"For this reason, since the day we heard about you, we have not stopped praying for you. We continually ask God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives, so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God, being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience, and giving joyful thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of his holy people in the kingdom of light. For he has rescued us from the dominion of darkness and brought us into the kingdom of the Son he loves, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins."
Colossians 1: 9 - 14
So many questions for all of us, too many to even begin to rehearse here. But what can we do?
As people of faith we can pray and even if we feel we don't or are struggling with faith we can still take time to "remember" each other. May the "voice of prayer" never fall silent during this time as we pray for each other and tell each other that we are doing just that.
And what struck me about this reading is that it isn't only prayer for each other, remembering each other, is prayer for knowledge, wisdom and understanding.
These we need in abundance at this time in relation to staying at home, keeping our distance if we do have to go out and so on.
It is a prayer for endurance and patience - these we need in abundance.
But thank God that he doesn't keep his distance - he never has and never will and the gift of his Son Jesus who came to live among us is testimony to that.
May he continue to open our eyes to him, to the needs and vulnerability of each other and to his strength to get us through. Let us learn more and more to lean on him and learn from him.
And so, dear friends
May God continue you to strengthen you in love
with strong arms around to support you
with his peace gently resting upon you
with his grace sufficient for all of your needs
with his love to fill your hearts to overflowing
And your little prayer for today -
you are the author of peace
and lover of concord.
To know you is eternal life,
to serve you is perfect freedom.
Defend your servants in every stress and danger,
that we may trust in your defence
and not fear the power of any adversaries;
through Jesus Christ our Redeemer. Amen.