Film Friday: Downton Abbey

There is big news at Downton – the King is coming to tea! Great excitement and trepidation fill the corridors of the stately home. But Barrow the butler seems a little overwhelmed by it all, caught in the headlights. And so Lady Mary pays a visit to his predecessor and as a result the retired Carson is called back into service to help out with the Royal visit. However, this does not go down well with Mr Barrow…

Conflict is an ever present trouble in this world. In this case Mr Barrow feels undermined, hurt and rejected. Jesus understands what it is to live with conflict. Every day he faced put downs, arguments and insults as a result of his reaching out to others. Those who thought they knew better came at him with their teeth bared day after day. I have just finished a rewrite of John’s Gospel, in which Jesus can barely do a single thing without the authorities coming down on him like a ton of rule books. No wonder Jesus regularly took time out to be alone with his father, he probably needed to offload some of the angst and burden. And to refocus himself on his precious and loving relationship with his father.

We all face conflict in this life, and finding a way to offload it in prayer can be really helpful. God is our refuge and strength, an ever present help in times of trouble. So writes the song writer in Psalm 46. He goes on to write: So we will not fear when life’s earthquakes hit us again, when life’s mountains crumble into the sea. I’m guessing he was using these as metaphors. For those times when everything solid is shaking around us, when our lives quake and our assurance shudders once more. In verse 10 of the Psalm we find the famous verse: Be still and know that I am God. Another versions puts it like this: Be still and experience that I am God. The writer seems to be encouraging us to take our troubles and conflict to God, and to calm ourselves as we wait with him. Not necessarily for a solution, but simply to steady ourselves in the storm as we remind ourselves of our place in God and his love and care for us. This won’t stop life’s troubles, Jesus knew that well enough, but it helps give us strength and comfort and resilience us as we face them.

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Comments

  1. Moira Newton says:

    For some of us actual earthquakes and earth slips not to mention the threat of tsunami!

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