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Sam Sanya1 
Sam Sanya

“When the disciples saw the Lord, they were filled with great joy.” John 20:20
The disciples were alone and frightened; they were scared and didn’t know where to turn for help, they couldn’t physically reach out to the people they knew, their families and friends were far from them. Jesus appears to them and as soon as they see him, they are full of Joy.

Jesus the good shepherd restores their souls; he brings back that laughter, that comfort, that hope, that real Joy.
I am grateful to God for technology, that we can produce online services which some churches here and indeed in other parts of the world, might not be resourced to do. However, I really miss seeing you, sharing conversations, catching up for a drink/coffee/meal, sharing a hug, playing in the band and worshipping together, going to the gym, playing sport and just doing life normally without restrictions. I know you will have your own list of things you miss.
There’ll be others too who like the disciples feel scared, low, trapped, lonely, surrounded by people but alone. When God made human beings, he said it wasn’t good for people to be alone, he sends us one another to encourage and pray for each other. 

Maybe this week pray for, text, write a letter, a card to someone you know would appreciate it.
Someone suggested keeping a ‘lockdown diary’ so when we come out, we can look back and see the moments when God was with us even though we couldn’t feel him. I'm thinking of doing this myself.

Jesus sends us his Holy Spirit to be both our companion and comforter.
May we know our Joy restored as the disciples did.
I pray for all those who are lonely, alone, feeling trapped and isolated. Jesus promises never to leave us nor forsake us. His name is Immanuel (God with us). Know his comfort, his rest, his warm embrace today. Amen
He restores my soul
Prayer Request
For the clients of the Ealing Soup Kitchen, particularly those who are self isolating at the moment, that they may still be able to access support.  We give thanks for Naomi and the St Stephen’s team who continue to serve them as best they can.