Sparrows - going cheap!
Monday, May 11th
Size isn’t everything. There are some sizes I can’t really conceive. 50,000 people is about my limit in terms of that many visualised in one place. Old Trafford packed so tight you had to jump if everyone else did. But 68 million, the population of Great Britain – no chance. As for the world population of nearly 8 billion, impossible.
Then there’s the age of the planet. 4.5 billion years. Makes you feel rather small and insignificant, doesn’t it? Well, I suppose that’s a matter of perspective. We all have our own worlds, too, where we tend to figure pretty large. Yet even in our own world we can be made to feel rather small and insignificant, put down or ignored.
Jesus met a few people who must have felt puny or overlooked or even side-lined deliberately. Zaccheus had his world turned upside down by a man who treated him as though he was the only person in the universe who mattered at one moment in time. It changed his whole perspective on life. A Samaritan woman was so transformed by a foreign stranger who treated her as somebody in what was a man’s world, that she broadcast his name to the whole of her village. And Jesus had the same effect on them too.
People mattered to Jesus. If even two sparrows, so cheap you could buy two for the smallest of coins, were worth something to their creator, what did that say about the worth of everyone he met. Accepted as he found them - worth dying for!
At my primary school in South Wales, we had a Bible passage we recited together at each morning assembly. Monday to Thursday it was one of Psalms 1, 8, 23 and 24. On Fridays it was the Lord’s Prayer – in Welsh. So, if it was Psalm 8, it must be Tuesday. I can still recite them all now. It’s Authorised version (take it or leave it in those days) and these words from Psalm 8 are still special for me. Even if they are not pc, the sentiment is there still:
‘when I consider the heavens,
the work of thy hands,
the moon and the stars which thou hast ordained,
what is man, that thou art mindful of him?’
What indeed? Worth dying for, unconditionally. It’s happening still. People of all shapes and sizes, paupers to Prime Ministers, saints and villains, treated by complete strangers as though they were their own mothers and fathers, sons and daughters, regardless of the risk to their own lives. What a wonderful world.
Mother, Father God,
Life is precious. We are learning that anew at the moment.
Forgive us if we have taken it for granted too often.
Thank you for all those angels who are desperately trying to preserve life.
Carers, paramedics, nurses, doctors, orderlies, hospital personnel
of all shapes and sizes, colours and creeds.
Thank you for all those people who have made us feel special over the years,
parents, children, family and friends.
At a time when we feel so fragile, strengthen us with the assurance that in your hands we will not break.