A Prayer for Grace

VICAR

Dear Readers of Country Squire Magazine I trust that You are well and holding up under the strain of these weeks under lock-down. While for some of You this period has been one which has allowed You to enjoy Your huge gardens and relax with the children, I know that some of You have been stuck in poky flats or imprisoned with aged relatives and their ornamental fairy collections and I feel for You. Hopefully not long to go now.

This week I would like to focus on the women who are going through a hard time because of physical changes.

Menopause often occurs alongside other significant changes in a woman’s life: her children leaving home, having ageing or sick parents, a return to a busy career, caring for grandchildren, or perhaps a husband’s early retirement. At times, it’s a combination of things. Those things are difficult to cope with on their own, but the added complication of the emotional and physical aspects of menopause can make them harder.

Added to this is the fact that we live in a very youth-obsessed culture. In a culture that doesn’t always praise age, women can feel out of touch, or worst, cast aside. The stress of getting older, and facing the challenges of age become much more real, and a woman can find herself struggling, or in the worst case, bitter. It is easy for her to seek out targets on whom to expend her ire.

This week I would like You to be especially empathetic to the women in Your life. To try to understand their differences and to recognise change often comes with a cost. Throw in lock-down, home-schooling, husbands on furlough and having to queue at supermarkets and You get to understand why some women are hot under the collar these days. First, and foremost, we must remember that we are created in God’s image, and that our bodies were created by him even as we age. This process is part of God’s design. Second, we need to remember that the injunction in Romans 12:1-2 was not just for the young.

We owe our mothers everything. If they require understanding and empathy at this time then We are duty bound to deliver that to them. Please try and understand the physical changes people go through and cut them some slack. Being human means being imperfect. Let Us all dwell on that fact more often.

Of course I wish You a pleasant Sunday and relaxing bank holiday. I hope Your week ahead is productive and that You get to enjoy the sunshine responsibly. God Bless You all.

Heavenly Father, I know that it is good for us to wait quietly for You to work out Your good purpose in each of our lives, yet I know that so often I find myself becoming restless when things go wrong or when things do not go according to my plans – and so I pray that You would teach me how to rest in the Lord and to be able to wait patiently for You to carry out Your good purpose in my life. I know that too often my patience seems to wear thin and I get irritable or angry and I know that this is not honouring to You. Teach me I pray, what it means to wait patiently for You to work Your good pleasure in my life. Keep me from my own strivings and stresses and give me the grace not to get impatient if things do not happen according to my own expectations but in everything may I learn to rest in Your love and to wait patiently for all You have for me in every circumstance of life. Thank You in Jesus name,   
 
Amen