A Prayer for the Countryside

VICAR

Dear Readers of Country Squire Magazine, I trust that You are well and healthy. I hope that You are enjoying the sunshine – when it makes it through the autumn clouds. Around here We are getting wonderful sunsets which leave one in awe and wonder at the majesty of the planet on which We live.

This week I would like You to reflect on the Countryside that We all love and cherish. Rural areas are currently under all kinds of pressures, as townsfolk move to the countryside after being stuck in apartments during the pandemic, as house prices become even more unreachable for the rural youth and as the countryside takes a lot of abuse from the mainstream as it is unfairly framed as backward and behind the times.

All of us who live and work in the countryside know different. The countryside is sound as a pound. It’s where the best people live! Many are getting increasingly fed up with the ideas of townies now affecting how We go about our daily business. There are rumblings across many villages at how policy from the centre is being hijacked by ideologues who have ideas which are not conducive to a practical rural life. Farmers in particular are fed up of being the ones who put food on urban plates but urbanites seem to think that their farms should instead all turn into carbon farms and be rewilded. Let us pray for sanity and a sensible middle ground which excludes the views of extremists and allows hardworking rural folk the freedoms they deserve.

1 Chronicles 16:32
Let the sea roar, and all it contains;
Let the field exult, and all that is in it.

I am reminded of the townie atheist who is walking through the countryside when he is ambushed by a wolf. “Oh God!” he screams “Help me!” The wolf stops in its tracks and a voice from the heavens rings out “All your life you’ve said you don’t believe in me, slandered my name and now you want my help?” “I realise that my request is bold,” replies the atheist “but would it be possible for you to make this wolf a Christian?” “Of course it is!” replies God. The wolf closes its eyes and clasps its paws in prayer and says “Thank you Father for this meal I am about to receive…”

Seriously now, it is too easy to sow division. We are all fellow Brits and Christians and We should act like it, rather than throwing stones from our silos.

Today I wish You a pleasant and peaceful Sunday. God Bless You all and have a wonderful week to come.

Lord, thank you for allowing me to live in the countryside. Lord, I lift up my rural area to you for blessings today. I thank you for allowing me to live in a place that lets me pray to you every day, that let’s me speak out my beliefs. Thank you for the blessing that the countryside is to me, my family and this country.

Amen