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Faith Comment published in the Petersfield Post

13 August 2019: Rev'd Stephen Wright, Petersfield Methodist Church

Our number has come up

It will not have escaped your notice, that a few weeks ago, England won the cricket world cup. On the same day, Novak Djokovic triumphed over Roger Federer at Wimbledon.

Even if you only have a passing knowledge of what ensued on that day, you will easily appreciate why sports people are a superstitious lot, who often believe in fate and luck. In theory, it’s not a take on things I share, but having played and watched sport over the years, I have often come away with the feeling that some things are just meant to be.

Perhaps it’s the same thought that inspires so many of us to play the National Lottery. Perhaps it will be us, this time. But the odds are not great. The stats show we are more likely to be crushed by a meteor, canonised as a saint, or Kim Kardashian elected as the next president of the United States.

Why then, do we persist in thinking it could be us? Perhaps it’s because of some deep unrecognised reflection that when it comes to luck, every one of us has had more than their fair share, just by being here. Some clever person, has calculated that the odds of any one of us being born is one in ten, followed by two and three-quarter million zeroes. In other words, the kind of odds that makes winning the Lottery ‘child’s play’.

Just by being here, all our numbers came up. What one makes of this, is a very individual thing. The extreme odds have helped persuade a lot of people to think of God, for others, it’s a matter of fate doing its thing. As a Christian, I’m not sure that that is sufficient an explanation. But one thing is for sure, just by being here, our luck is in, and it requires some serious reflection.

The last PACT Holiday Club session for 2019 takes place this Friday - 16th August

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