4th September 2018

Keep Calm And Carry On 

Let all bitterness, wrath, anger, clamour, and evil speaking be put away from you, with all malice. And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you..
Ephesians 4:31-32 (NKJV)

Years ago I was conducting a baptism in a public swimming pool in the Cambridge area. The candidate was a lovely, shy and rather nervous lady who was terrified of water. What could be done to calm her down? Was immersion the only way?

The first problem was the considerable noise coming from the shallow end where excited school children were having a great old time. It seemed our request to management for a quiet fifteen minutes had gone unheeded. However the deep end was full of experienced swimmers doing widths—and you could hardly hear a sound. (Still waters run deep perhaps?) The end of this story was that the pool was finally cleared for the short quiet time that we needed, and the deed was done. Bless her, a quick plunge vertically down and back up in the deep end did the trick, and the watery grave of which she was afraid wasn’t half as bad as her fears had been.

But the thing that now impresses me is that whenever I visit swimming pools I’m always struck by the splashing and clamour coming mostly from the shallow end. I think life’s a bit like that–fine in a swimming pool, but rather exhausting outside in society.

We live in a noisy world: Social Media, arguments, Brexit, politics—the list can go on and on. Some comments are shallow, others deep; and it seems to me that the quieter voice, if it can be heard above the hubbub of our modern way of life, often brings far more solace and wisdom than a chaotic din and aggressive arguments can.

I love the famous phrase ‘Keep Calm and Carry On,’ don’t you? The British Government issued it in 1939 as World War Two was starting and it has been used in many different ways. I think it still holds a lesson for us today. Yes, that baptism often comes to mind—the braveness of the member thinking she was out of her depth but was doing what she felt God expected, and the lesson of seeing which was the end from where the most noise was heard!

Psalm 34:14 says to “Depart from evil and do good; seek peace, and pursue it.” The peace that we seek in a noisy world clamouring for attention is found by focusing on God, as we find in Isaiah 26:3, “You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on You, because he trusts in You.” We need to “Be still, and know that I am God:” (Psalm 46:10).

Prayer
Wonderful Father, please help us to stay calm and collected towards you when so many in this world have no idea what is going on. Your Grace is sufficient for us.
Amen

Study by Tony Goudie

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About the Author:
Tony Goudie is the Pastor of the Great Baddow Congregation of the Worldwide Church of God UK (near Chelmsford).

Local Congregation:
Worldwide Church of God Great Baddow
United Reformed church
High Street
Great Baddow
CHELMSFORD
CM2 7HH

Meeting Time:
Saturday 1pm

Local Congregational Contact:
Tony Goudie
Phone: 01508-498165
Email: tony_goudie@wcg.org.uk

 

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