Thought for the month – Provided by Alan Austin – Lay Worship Assistant
As this is written, the leaders of the seven developed countries with the largest economies, known as the G7, have been meeting here in France. The agenda includes the global economy, trade tensions, the environment and tackling inequality.
Pressing matters include the fires currently raging in the Amazon, Iran’s actions in the Middle East, pro-democracy protests in Hong Kong and negotiations in Europe over Brexit.
In all these transactions, the words leaders use will be critical in building trust, allaying suspicions, reaching agreement and deciding courses of action.
This Sunday’s Bible reading from Ecclesiastes 10 urges those in leadership to choose their words wisely, speak graciously and avoid unnecessary provocation.
“Words from the mouth of the wise are gracious, but fools are consumed by their own lips. At the beginning their words are folly; at the end they are wicked madness — and fools multiply words.” (verses 12-14)
This urging was sorely needed in Old Testament times, scholars tell us. And equally, it seems, this advice is appropriate today. Both then and now, the future was quite uncertain.
“No one knows what is coming — who can tell someone else what will happen after them?” (verse 14)
National leaders are also urged to be sober in their habits, maintain sound health and strength and diligently fulfil their responsibilities.
“Blessed is the land whose king is of noble birth and whose princes eat at a proper time — for strength and not for drunkenness. Through laziness the rafters sag; because of idle hands, the house leaks.” (verses 17-18)
May we all support our national leaders, especially those who profess the Christian faith, praying they will lead with wisdom and strength so our lands may be blessed, as God intends
*Please note, we are going to have a baptism service in Uzès on the 20th October. If anyone has a decorative bowl and a jug, not necessarily matching, we could borrow to use as a font, please let Jacqui Witting know as soon as possible