From a Coal-miner's Grandaughter
Two items today:
We were driving home last night from our church’s Common Grounds service, when our older son, who is 12, said, “I’m feeling more involved in church. I’m going to more services (not sure where that came from – still only going to two), I’m more involved in youth group, I’m liturgizing (which, in his world of made up words, means reading the liturgy this Sunday); I’m more “into it.” It feels good.”
Arise – Arise – Arise – Arise – Arise, Arise, my soul…
And then he started picking on his little brother. Life remains the same here at our house.
On another note, have you read about this in the Buckhannon newspaper? Apparently, a group from Kansas (about 20 people) is planning on protesting outside the community memorial service for the miners killed in the Sago mine. I’ll let you read the newspaper article if you want to understand the “reasoning” behind this "protest," and why this group thinks why the death of these miners is “just.” It brings up the question, for me – How do Christians deal with those who claim to be Christian but only spread hate?
Set that aside for just a moment (we’ll get back to it, I’m afraid), and read the comments on the “remainder” post that Jeff left yesterday. Lot’s of meat here to consider, but let’s focus on just one aspect. I mentioned in the remainder post that I often try to squeeze my prayer time into the “remainder” -- the time left over – in my day. Among the verses that Jeff left is this one:
Honor the LORD with your substance and with the first fruits of all your produce; then your barns will be filled with plenty, and your vats will be bursting with wine. (Proverbs 3: 9-10)
In other words, stop trying to squeeze prayer into the remainder, but give time to God first, and everything else will fall into place. That’s difficult. In practicality it means that all of my commitments – work, family, church, free time (yes, I am committed to providing myself with free time) would need to be compressed, and “first fruits” given to prayer.
And who am I supposed to pray for? I told you we would get back to it: Matthew 5:44: But I say to you, Love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you.
I am certainly not being persecuted. But protesting outside a memorial service and spreading such hatred could be considered persecution, couldn’t it? I don’t want to pray for these people. First fruits are too hard to come by. Anger against such hatred is too hard to release.
And then another friend, Linda, sent me an email. She mentioned in it that she was struck, as she read the story of David, by David’s reaction to the death of Saul and his son Jonathon. Remember, Saul had been trying to kill David for a long time. David says, when he finds out that Saul and Jonathon are dead, “How are the mighty fallen.” He doesn’t say, “Yippee, Saul is dead, “ or “Ding Dong, the King is dead.” He mourns. (2 Samuel 1)
Not what I wanted to hear.