18th July 2022

Last week Facebook reminded me that six years previously I had shared a cartoon with my friends. The picture showed two people in conversation, with one commenting wryly ‘My desire to be well-informed is currently at odds with my desire to remain sane’, and it was somewhat disconcerting to realise just how often over the past six turbulent years that image had felt relevant. I have heard it said that a good Christian should read a good newspaper, but it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the rapid succession of events that have affected our national life over the last few years. And it’s also a little disconcerting to see just how quickly even major events are pushed from the top of the news agenda by the latest natural disaster, international conflict, or political controversy. It’s a matter of months since all our attention was focused on the fallout from the US / UK withdrawal from Afghanistan, but while those whose lives were thrown into turmoil then are still dealing with the aftermath, the media’s attention – and thus ours – is now elsewhere.

The human attention span is brief – trust a teacher on this one! So today let’s give thanks for the frequently unsung charity workers who remain to give much-needed help on the ground long after the reporters have moved on. And let’s continue to ask ourselves what our own individual and collective contribution to resolving the world’s problems might be, whether it be prayer, time, money, or all three – for the sake of the eternal Kingdom.

Debbie Pinfold