Terrorism

No Safer Place

I drifted off to sleep the other night with one persistent thought floating through my mind: wouldn’t it be nice if I could whisk my family away to some safe place, hidden from the trauma and turmoil that is our modern world? I reeled through an imaginary rolodex of potential locations only to cross them off my mental list.

Some…other…country? Nowadays, the threat of terror seems to run rampant in everywhere.

A remote island? Not with the danger of tsunamis and hurricanes.

A wilderness hideout? Lions and tigers and bears, oh my.

A picture of Antarctica flashed across my computer screen as it powered up the next day. How cold does it really get there, anyhow? And would we have what it takes to survive the terrain?

I realize how unrealistic (and selfish) my ponderings are, but I wouldn’t be surprised to discover I’m in the company of millions who have such thoughts on occasion. Who wouldn’t want to escape the madness of today for somewhere more peaceful and predictable? The truth is, I learned long ago there is no such place on earth.

Even amidst Scriptures so woven with comfort and hope, we’re told that in this world we will have trouble. As a matter of fact, these verses warn that deep darkness will cover the earth before the dawning of great light. We will “hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of birth pains.”

Sound familiar? Even if you haven’t read the Bible, I’m sure it does…because this is now our daily reality.

If anything, I am convinced that while there is no safe place on earth, there is no safer place than in the only refuge that will withstand the ravages of evil: “God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging.”

Yes, I feel afraid when I hear of all the awful things going on in the world. But I know my God is greater than my fear, and I know that one day, after my flesh has been destroyed, I will see him with my own eyes. And until then, my job is not to hide away in some obscure shelter under the false notion that I’ll be protected from harm. Instead, it’s his will that I embrace the cross and endure whatever trials come wherever I am, withstanding it all to declare, “I know that my Redeemer lives, and that in the end he will stand on the earth” in victory! For he has promised that one day “he will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things [will have] passed away.”

Advertisements

Though Earth Give Way

Blog_CurtainOfWaterthough earth give way
and mountains shall crumble
and all that we’ve trusted
one day will fail

the curtain’s been torn
between light and darkness
and in the end, light
will always prevail

Source: Where Are You God?

Photo Credit: File:Curtain of Water.JPG – Wikimedia Commons

Life as Usual

Blog_CrowdedMall

When will we stop going on, life as usual, when we all know…it’s NOT?

Source: Half-mast

Photo Credit: Omote-sando hills | Imagine the craziest mall you’ve ever be… | Flickr

Where are You, God?

Blog_CityStormyNightwhere are you, God
in the midst of the darkness?
we’re crying to you
in this desolate land

war rages around us
we’re searching for answers
to things
we can never understand

where are you, God
do you see our tears falling?
do you hear our prayers
and feel our pain?

the world is in anguish
our children are dying
the clouds of refreshing
withhold their rain

where are you God?
we’re hurting and hopeless
wounded and broken
and in distress

our own neighbors killing
destroying, devouring
can You bring forth beauty
from our hateful mess?

God, you came down
from light into darkness
born in the shadows
of earth’s darkest night

the forces of evil
releasing their fury
swords bent on destruction
consuming all life

you spoke to the madness
with love and compassion
to ears fallen deaf
in a world filled with strife

brought healing, redemption
though you were rejected
crushed by our hate
while releasing your light

and now you are here
in the midst of our suffering
calling to us
“don’t settle for this”

we’re made for much more
than what we’ve accepted
and this world is not
all that there is

so though earth give way
and mountains shall crumble
and all that we’ve trusted
one day will fail

the curtain’s been torn
between light and darkness
and in the end, light
will always prevail

 

Source: Where are You, God?

Photo Credit: Thunderstorm – Free images on Pixabay

Half-mast

Blog_HalfMastIt seems the flags have been flying half-mast more often than not these days. Sometimes we drive by, and we know. “Oh, it’s for that tragedy in such-and-such a city,” or, “It’s for the terror attack in that other town.” Other times, we don’t. “What now?” we ask.

I heard on the radio that our president has called for flags to be at half-mast on sixty-seven occasions since he took office. And how many more times will that call go forth as we tread through the coming years in our sin-plagued land?

Half-mast “refers to a flag flying beneath its summit on a pole” as a symbol of “respect, mourning, or distress.” Do we realize the degree of distress our country is in when we so consistently see flags flying half-mast? Or do we walk on, somber for a moment, soon forgetting the distress call? Has it become so commonplace that we fail to remember the symbolism?

As the flags fly beneath their summit, maybe our hearts need to be half-mast as well. Respecting, mourning, remembering. Understanding of the times.

What tragedy will it take to bring us to our knees? When will we humble ourselves and turn from our selfish ways? When will we turn to the one who created us for so much more than what we’ve settled for? When will we admit that we need help? When will we pray?

And when will we stop going on, life as usual, when we all know…it’s NOT?

Every time we see flags at half-mast, it serves as a wake-up call. We are not invincible. We are not all-sufficient. We need a savior.

“If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.” (2 Chronicles 7:14)

 

Photo Credit: Half-mast – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia