It’s time for God’s people to rise up
Published 12:00 am Wednesday, December 7, 2005
Throughout history, destruction from a number of avenues has plagued our brothers and sisters in Christ. From the first days of the church’s beginning, there has been destruction. It was first from the fellow Jews and then from the Romans. Persecution caused destruction in the lives of many of those who named the name of Christ. For some it was a loss of property and status. For others it was a loss of family who disowned them. For still others, it was a loss of dignity and peace on this earth. Our brethren have been dealing with destruction for a long time.
In the wake of Katrina, this devastating storm which has hit the shores of our state and two neighboring states, many of our brothers and sisters are once again reliving destruction in their lives. It is heart breaking to watch the reports of the hard hit areas and see the multitudes who suffer and struggle. Hearts are broken. Lives are turned upside down. Property is lost, devastated. There is a sense of loneliness and frustration. Why? Why? The questions arises over and over. Many have lost their lives. Some have lost their family members and their neighbors. The half has not yet been told. Words fail in trying to express the horror that many are facing at this very moment. But, time will heal.
The response of the nation and other parts of the world is amazing. It is such a joy to listen to those who offer assistance on TV, to read emails that pour into our website every day of the thousands of people who are reaching out to help. It is truly a work of God when a nation takes it’s eyes off of itself and focuses on the needs of people whom they have never met. God is working.
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God works in mysterious ways, that we well know. No single one of us can ever tell another exactly why something like this could happen. We watch a president who has a strong faith wrestle with the question. We see those devastated by the storm struggle for understanding. The focus is on the incident, not necessarily on the larger picture.
After the destruction and devastation in New York a few years ago, it has lifted my faith in this nation. People from all over rallied to assist in whatever way they could. And now, we are seeing the same thing. Instead of focusing on what God did along the coast, what about focusing on what God is doing with a nation. Hearts are torn and pierced. People are arising from every state in the nation shouting a willingness to help. People are opening their homes to strangers, perhaps even, angels unaware. They are sending food, water and clothing to the masses who are without. Some of it will touch our brethren in the Faith and some of it will touch their neighbors. But, people are being helped and it is making us a better nation. New friendships will arise out of this devastation, some of which will allow the gospel to enter the lives of unbelievers. God will be the focus of many who have lived in alienation to Him. For others, their faith will be strengthened through the trial, both in God and their fellow countrymen. Still, there will be some who grow more bitter and angry. But, God has made His presence known.
In the aftermath of all of this, many will reconsider their relationship to God. What if something like this happens to me? To us? Will I be ready? Some will be reminded that in breath of a wind life can be ended on this earth. An awakening will grow forth from this overwhelming incident and in the long term process, this nation will move closer to the principles of God. It has always proven itself to be true in Biblical history.
The needs that arise among our brothers and their neighbors will be huge. They will tax many of us to the limit, and then some. We will be called upon to do far, exceedingly above what we can imagine. And, the need will go on for a long while. But, there will come a time when it is over. Many people will relocate to other parts of the country and some will return to what was once home. And, on the lips of some there will be the sweet message of a loving, crucified Christ who through the hands of His followers have touched their soul. A cup of water shared today could touch the souls of millions in the future. We will never know the extent of the working of God through this opportunity to serve. We may never see it… but it will be there. Give a cup of water or a bite of food from the sweet hand of faith and God can change not only a nation, but the world.
Food, water and clothing are not the only things people need right now. Many just need a friend who can reassure them that life will go on and things can get better. It is within our gifts to give that. God has raised up a people, gifted them and provided an opportunity to serve. And when we do, there will be a sweet aroma ascending from the altars of our lives in service directly to the Throne of God. He will smell it and be glorified. As a matter of fact, it will override the stench of the selfishness of mankind who refuses to lift a finger to serve. If the remnant of God will serve Him through helping others in this and other like devastations, this nation can and will be spared other In-Time judgments. It is time for God’s people to rise up and serve Him now.
God Bless and GOOOOOO DAWGS,
Rev. Marshall Murphy
Rev. Murphy is the Pastor at the First Christian Church of Demopolis. Rev. Murphy can be reached at the church office at 289-3615 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org