GM: FORGIVE THEM FATHER FOR THEY KNOW NOT WHAT THEY DO
Wicked men pumped six bullets into a policewoman two days ago. After battling for life, she died yesterday. I may have met her, as she worked at the office of the Commissioner where I go for meetings regularly. #RoadSafety.
In fact my colleague and I, on hearing about the incident on arrival at the Commissioner’s office that fateful morning, briefly reflected on the state of our nation. And quietly in our hearts offered a prayer.
The reaction to this, yet another act of egregious wickedness in my country, has been swift. Condemnation! Condolences to the bereaved family and the police force! A determination to find the killers! Led by the Prime Minister, and other leaders in the society, including the Commissioner of Police.
And one which was a bit unexpected, but no doubt reflecting the sentiments of significant section of the Jamaica people; a reexamination of the option of hanging by the new Minister of National Security. Predictably the Human Rights Activists have already voiced their opposition to any such move.
So my country is in mourning once again. And some would wish to go back to the days of ‘ Gunfight at OK Coral’, #Nationwide News, by arming the citizens. So that ‘ bad man’ would think twice about pulling a gun on anyone; unlike the present circumstances where they attack with impunity. And are often never brought to justice!
With all of this stuff swirling around in my head, I began my devotions this morning and opened my hymnbook, randomly, searching for a familiar hymn, and found a Word from the Lord in another one.
” Thou camest, O Lord, with the Living word
that should set thy people free;
but with mocking scorn and with crown if thorn
they bore thee to Calvary.
O come to my heart, Lord Jesus;
there is room in my heart for thee.
Verse four of a very instructive hymn, a favorite, which begins:
Thou didst leave thy throne and thy kingly crown
when thou camest to earth for me;
but in Bethlehem’s home was there found no room
for thy holy Nativity.
O come to my heart Lord Jesus…
And the message, on reflection from the Lord about the state of my country, and indeed the whole wide world continued in the readings in my church for tomorrow. And I am down to preach in an another inner city community where my church has a presence.
” A certain woman named Lydia, a worshiper of God, was listening to us; she was from the city of Thyatira and a dealer in purple cloth. The Lord opened her heart to listen eagerly to what was said by Paul “. From Acts 16: 9-15.
Also from one choice for the Gospel, there are two possible readings, I tweeted this yesterday.
Check out @lucienforJesus’s Tweet: https://twitter.com/lucienforJesus/status/726018200849268736?s=09
And from the other possible reading for the Gospel this struck me:
” When Jesus saw him lying there and knew that he had been there for a long time, he said to him, ‘ Do you want to be made well’. ” From John 5:1-9
( Lord have mercy on stubborn hearts).
Finally and perhaps the most dramatic one of all taken from a story that even ‘ the vilest offender’ knows.
The story I read in a meditation from Chris Tiegreen yesterday of Paul’s conversion as he reported to King Agrippa in Acts 26:12-13
” With this in mind, I was traveling to Damascus with the authority and commission of the chief priests, when at mid-day along the road, your Excellency I saw a bright light from heaven, brighter than the sun, shinning around me and my companions. ”
Keep in mind the staggering thought,
‘ blighter than the sun, as we then end up in the Epistle, the New Testament reading for tomorrow, and read these prophetic words.
” I saw no temple in the city ( of God, the New Jerusalem), for its temple is the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb ( Jesus Christ Crucified). And the city has no need of sun or moon to shine on it, for the glory of God is its light, and its lamp is the Lamb……
But nothing unclean will enter it…..only those who who are written in the Lamb’s book of life.
From Revelation 21:10, 22-22:5
And from my bedtime reading this week:
And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying,
See, the home of God is among mortals.
He will dwell with them;
they will be his peoples,
and God will be with them;
he will wipe away every year from their eyes.
Death will be no more;
mourning and crying and pain will be no more,
for the first things have passed away ”
Comment: Always when the Lord speaks it is quite simple to understand. And we don’t have to be any great Theologian to understand this message. Essentially that God who is The Light of the world, in Christ came to dwell among mortals. And thus ‘spoke’ a Living Word that would set us free – from death, Sin , pain and grief.
But we chose instead to watch TV, because TNT ‘ knows drama’. And what better way to spend one’s life than to experience drama! We chose to watch porn! We choose to watch CNN 24/7! We chose to experience dancehall Monday – Sunday.#WeddyWednesdays. We chose to watch ESPN sports and SportsMax and other sports stations in our ‘ man cave’ with our friends; American Football, English and Spanish Soccer, and live from one Olympics or World Cup Soccer Finals, vicariously through the life of Usain Bolt or Lionel Messi, to another. We have elected to listen to the voices of our political leaders, our businessmen and women, our intellectuals, our entertainers, and ignored the Word of God.
And so because we have, chosen, unlike Lydia who worshipped God and paid attention and God opened her heart to the Scriptures, to ignore the Lord, we have been given spiritual #Lemonade #Beyonce to drink.
And so the land mourns. Yet again! And we would turn to hanging and Gunfight at OK Coral. Really! And yet He Who is The Light of the World, and in Whom there is the Promise of no more mourning, continues to speak a Living Word to a troubled nation, despite what we did to Him at Calvary, and what we continue to do in our hearts and homes and bedrooms, and a troubled world, saying:
‘ Those who I love I rebuke and discipline. So be earnest and repent. Here I am! I stand at the door and knock. If anyone heard my voice and opens the door, I will come in and eat with him, and he with me. Rev. 3:19-20.
It is a great mystery why the death, at the hands of evil men, of an innocent hard working policewoman should be an event which causes us to refocus our minds and hearts. But she would not be the first, not will she be the last. For who can fathom the mysteries of this life. Only God! The Light of the world.
The question then, is, as a nation, do we really wish to get well? Or die a slow death like the proverbial frog, watching drama on TNT or #AGoodWife while the Living Word of God Who only can heal this nation, goes ignored.
O come to my heart Lord Jesus. For there is so much room in my wicked heart for thee.