Devotion: A Sure Foundation
- Isaiah 33:6- He will be the sure foundation for your times, a rich store of salvation and wisdom and knowledge; the fear of the Lord is the key to this treasure. NIV
On June 14, Steve Scalize and three others were shot as they practiced for a congressional baseball game. Representative Scalize almost died and is still in serious condition. The one year anniversary when forty-nine people were murdered in an Orlando nightclub and the terrorist attack where a man ambushed and killed five policemen in Dallas just passed. Kim Jong-un launched a nuclear-capable intercontinental missile and called it a gift to Americans on July 4th. There’s dissension between the races with each side having legitimate points, but neither willing to listen. Our leaders fight over health-care reform, immigration, The Wall and just about everything else. Our youth are dying of drug overdoses and churches are closing. Many days I wonder how things can get any worse.
Where can we turn for help in a country, a world so in need? I certainly don't claim to have all the answers, but I have to wonder if the solution might start with Christians.
In the book of Isaiah, God spoke to Hezekiah about a sure foundation, about there being plenty of wisdom and knowledge available to solve the problems. But there was one stipulation. The people were to fear, or respect the Lord.
If you're like me, maybe you've pointed at those with opposing views and disrespectfully said, "You're wrong. And I won't listen to anything you have to say." But remember the few days after the Virginia ballpark shooting when we respected God by respecting each other? Suddenly it wasn't so important to be right. Rather, pulling together as Americans gained prominence. We prayed for or at least sent good thoughts toward the injured and their families.
Am I the only one who wonders what if - we all came together as Americans first and party/race second? What if - we listened to our president speak without automatically dismissing all he has to say? What if - suddenly we couldn't remember, or refused to remember what happened last week, last month, last year that made us angry and want to withdraw, cross our arms over our chests and balk like children unwilling to compromise? What if - we were willing to listen and learn from each other? What if - Christians led, took the Light of Christ into the world? What if - we prayed faithfully and showed grace to others? What if - we committed ourselves to God wholeheartedly and allowed Him to lead, to provide the strength and guidance we need each day?
Respecting God and allowing Him to lead - now there's an idea that might work.
After all He did form the sun and moon and stars and all that is in the earth. He is our sure foundation. If we respect Him and open our hearts and minds, He can teach us how to offer grace to each other and make wise and effective decisions.
And who better than Christians to exemplify the teachings of Jesus, to seek His will for this country and the world? I for one am willing to try. How about you?
Merciful God, forgive us when we disrespect you by disrespecting our brothers and sisters. Please turn our hearts to love and peace and away from hatred and violence. Amen.