Over the past couple of weeks, #BrandJamaica has been ” trending” extraordinarily well on the international scene.
Scene 1: CNN anchor employs a popular ‘ Jamaican saying’, to make a point during a major discussion on health care reform in the USA. That Senator McCain’s decision to vote against the Republican bill to replace ‘Obama Care’, showed who ‘ run tings’ in America.
we run tings; tings nuh run we
Check out @marciaforbes’s Tweet: https://twitter.com/marciaforbes/status/911609646883930112?s=09
This was such a huge moment that it had folks on Twitter tweeting about it for hours.
Scene 2: German elections. Although Angela Merkel’s party retained its position as the most popular one, the margin of victory was disappointing for its followers. And alarm bells went off as the ultra right, read Nazi party, gains huge numbers. To the point where they have a presence in the Bundestsag! The German Parliament. For the first time. Consequently there is speculation about a ‘ Jamaica coalition ‘. Parties, including Angela Merkel’s, whose flags are black, green and gold, coming together to form the government.
Clearly the Jamaica flag and its colours is a ‘ hot item’, internationally. Thanks to #UsainBolt and #Realshellyann and others. Plus the music. Plus the #Reggaeboyz.
And so I tweeted:
First CNN and our dialect. Now Germany and the colours of our flag #JamaicaCoalition. We big and broad bout yah https://t.co/1sl3oEdLsX
Scene 3: One which provoked the Gleaner cartoonist to respond ‘ impishly’.
Extract from Gleaner Article
As American president Donald Trump squares off with athletes and their silent protest during the playing of the national anthem, the world’s fastest man, our very own Usain Bolt was thrown into the mix. The president tweeted a clip of our superstar pausing mid interview as the American anthem was being played. The president tweeted, “Even Usain Bolt from Jamaica, one of the greatest runners and athletes of all time showed RESPECT for our national anthem.” Of course Jamaicans didn’t take too kindly to the mention and social media blew up with cries to keep us out of the mix up.
Then, in the middle of all this excitement about Jamaica, our dialect, our flag, and our sports heroes, a sobering Word.
About who really ‘ run tings’! Not John McCain. Not Angela Merkel. Not Usain Bolt. And definitely not Donald Trump. And soooo not the Gleaner. Nor Nationwide News. Nor The Jamaica Observer. Nor CNN.
Not the present Cabinet of the ruling JLP, nor in the future, if it so happens, the recently announced shadow cabinet of the Opposition PNP.
About who ‘ run tings’, even, and especially when the ‘ chips are down’. When ‘ dutty tuff’. When ‘ yu corner dark’. Literally! And there appears to be no hope.
Perhaps the story began when I read this section of the OT reading for Sunday in my Anglican church.
“The whole Israelite community set out from the Desert of Sin, traveling from place to place as the Lord commanded. They camped at Rephidim, but there was no water for the people to drink.
So they quarreled with Moses and said, “Give us water to drink.” Moses replied, “Why do you quarrel with me? Why do you put the Lord to the test?” But the people were thirsty for water there, and they grumbled against Moses.
They said, “Why did you bring us up out of Egypt to make us and our children and livestock die of thirst?” Then Moses cried out to the Lord , “What am I to do with these people? They are almost ready to stone me.” The Lord answered Moses, “Go out in front of the people. Take with you some of the elders of Israel and take in your hand the staff with which you struck the Nile, and go. I will stand there before you by the rock at Horeb. Strike the rock, and water will come out of it for the people to drink.”
So Moses did this in the sight of the elders of Israel. And he called the place Massah and Meribah because the Israelites quarreled and because they tested the Lord saying, “Is the Lord among us or not?”
Exodus 17:1-7 NIV
So we know that, irrespective of how dark things might look, a faithful God is, ‘ standing right there with us ‘. For He is Sovereign. And ‘ Ah Him run tings’. Always! No matter how bad the situation might appear.
Including a destroyed nation #Barbuda #Dominica #PuertoRico….out there in the middle of the Ocean. A big Ocean.
Cancer – the dreaded disease. And even death of a loved one. Relationship issues. Financial worries. A nation which continues to be plagued by Murder – ” why would they kill a 13 year old “, asked a bereaved mother this week.
Marginalization of our young men #Unattachedyouths Teenagers selling sex for money! Bikers ‘ running red lights’ with impunity. Political tribalism! Black men and police brutality on the USA. #BlackLivesMatter. Triggering #Takeaknee.
And the story which began with the Word of God, ended with an inspired Word. Found on opening my devotional guide randomly!
WISDOM AND REVELATION
I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened. Ephesians 1:18
We live in a world of darkness, and we get lost in it often. Plenty of voices offer to help us out too – there’s no shortage of people who will offer advice and speculate on the right decisions to make. Navigating a landscape of diverse philosophies and beliefs can be very confusing.
That’s why one of the greatest requests we can pray for each other, as St. Paul did for the Ephesians, is for a spirit of wisdom
and revelation ( vs 17). Or as he colorfully puts it, ” that the eyes of your hearts may be enlightened “.
And Paul seems to have some pretty specific ideas about what our hearts need to be enlightened with.
We need to know the hope of our calling, the riches of our inheritance, and the power that is available to those who believe. If those things are firmly established in our hearts, we won’t find ourselves lost in darkness very often.
Think about it: if we are certain of our hope and know what God has called us to do; if we understand what we have already begun to inherit; and if we realize the amazing power of God working for on our behalf; then discouragement and confusion become a lot less prevalent in our lives. ….
This is a perspective-altering prayer.
When the trials of our lives loom large in our vision, we become fearful and depressed. But when we lift our sights to the truths that are greater and even more real than our circumstances, we can overcome anything.
If any situation oppresses you today, lift your eyes higher. Get a clear picture of the hope, the inheritance, and the power of God, and live and pray as though they are more real than anything else in your life.
Hope can see heaven through the thickest clouds – Thomas Benton Brooks.
Comments: None needed. Except ” Lord I believe; help thou mine unbelief “ – Holy Scripture. ( Mark 9:24 KJV)
” …….Above all, remind me constantly that I have nothing except what you give me, and can do nothing except what you enable me to do” – A morning prayer
” ....My gracious master and my God,
assist me to proclaim
and spread through all the earth abroad
the honors of the name ” – a verse from the hymn, ” O for a thousand tongues to sing my dear Redeemer’s praise.