Helpringham's Bethel: Pleading with a Nation

At Helpringham in Lincolnshire is an old Congregational chapel, called Bethel. Unusually, it has upon it a verse of poetry which a sophisticated reader might dismiss as mere doggerel:

O Britain know thy Living God

Serve Him with faith and fear

He makes thy churches His abode

And claims thine honours here

It is charming yet earnest. The irony is that this particular British church, this House of God, is now a private residence, in keeping with our national rejection of our former faith. Even what churches remain may not be His abode, seeing as so few preach His good news of sins forgiven. Yet the first two lines are relevant as ever:

He whom once we knew, may again be known; we are called to serve Him, faithfully and fearfully. Let us turn again to Him.