Sunday, December 13, 2015

In Chapter 16 we see the brutality that is often used to either lay hold to or retain power.

Here we are in the midst of Advent awaiting the baby Jesus even as we bask in the joy of the birth of William Mark into our church family.  We know there is nothing his parents or any of us would withhold from him, no harm we would allow to befall him.  In the past we have felt this same way about Evan, Isaac, Mishi, James, Jaxon, Jordyn, Reginald, Angelina, Marcus, Tucker and Caleb all born in recent years and in a real way added to our family. 

The horror of war we see everyday as children just as helpless and precious as these are sacrificed in power grabs by Isis and Boko Haram remind us of the sacrifices of babes to false gods as recorded in Jeremiah and the misery of parents in Bethlehem as Herod sought to eliminate the baby Jesus who threatened his power. Poor helpless babes!  Then closer at hand we see the death of Black boys and men in our own land leaving mothers crying like Rachel of old. We too are or should be crying at such horrid loss.

What can be our response? Do we arm ourselves?  Do we send more sons and daughters to be sacrificed and to kill others to 'prevent terrorism'? Does peace come from two sets of mutual destruction?   Do we ignore slaughter on our own city streets? How do we heal the wrongs done to gain or maintain power?  How can we empower others to live as God intends them to live (as those God's son set free)?

Read the words of this Graham Kendrick hymn  which you can hear on YouTube.  See the way the Creator of the world sought to end conflict and violence in contrast to guns, drones, bombs and lost lives.

Servant King
From Heaven you came, helpless Babe,
entered our world, your glory veiled; 
not to be served but to serve and
 give your life that we might live.

      This is our God, the Servant King
      He calls us now to follow him
      To bring our lives as a daily offering
      Of service to the Servant King

So let us learn how to serve,
and in our lives enthrone Him;
Each other's needs to prefer,
for it is Christ we're serving.
CCLI  78897

As we give our lives in service to others let us follow Christ's way of peace - sacrificing only ourselves and not demanding the rights of power. Let us protect the vulnerable, uphold the weak and weary and help bring Christ to all.  

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