Luke 24.15 As they talked and discussed these things Jesus himself came up and walked along with them.
Just knowing that Jesus walks alongside us is a wonderful encouragement and strength. If you find what you are going through at present hard work, or bewildering, then remember you have Jesus walking with you. You can lean into him and receive his strength and help. There is no social distancing with him.
As a young boy I went to the scout cub group that met locally and would walk the 2 mile journey there and back, even through the dark winter nights. On one particularly dark night I was frightened by the sound of a number of birds taking off with loud squawks and flapping noises. I began to run and then felt someone was chasing me. I tripped and fell to the ground in a fearful worried state. My first response was to pray, asking for Gods help. Peace came! I got up and began the rest of the journey home. This time it felt as if I had a warm encouraging arm around me. My conviction was that Jesus was walking with me. He made all the difference.
I guess we all have our encouraging experiences, where we know that Jesus has stepped in to give us special help. These experiences can help us remember that the first person to go to is Jesus. We can be confident that Jesus is alongside us even when we get it wrong.
Today, and through the rest of the week, we are encouraged to pray for the other OpenGate churches. I wonder if I could encourage you to pray that Swindon and all the other churches would experience Jesus walking alongside them through all the changes that are going on in this challenging pandemic season.