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Come Saturday, or Listen to the Voice of the Poor 121011
This holiday season (Advent!) has already been glorious for us here at home. For some reason, known to us as Jesus Christ, my wife and I have been growing spiritually so much in the last few days.
Part of it has to do with visiting an old friend. The friends lives in such a way that he could be called destitute. He basically is living in a unfinished basement room that is separated from outside only by a doubled sheet of plastic sheeting; he heats with a small boxwood heater that heats really well for a few moments, but cools off quickly. Many people might be judgmental at the living shelter, and be repulsed by the potential lack of a formal kitchen, bath, living room and bedroom. His space was more like a teepee space, or like a large cardboard box. The market value of the home is probably less than zero.
Yet he was obviously and clearly a free person, a Godly person and a happy person.
What are we doing wrong? Christmas, sadly, is a time Christians must consider the ugly, rampant, diseased consumption that celebrates the birth of our savior, Jesus Christ. If Jesus had not lived, prayed, worshipped and taught about his and our father God, this knowledge of God and the universe would not be part of our lives, and we would be living and walking around like the dead—dead to God.
Destroying humanity’s love for one another, destroying the environment and causing financial stress for so many people is not the purpose of Jesus Christ.
Spend some time with the poor, and talk it over with Jesus.
Pray for peace,
1When the Lord restored the fortunes of Zion, we were like those who dream.
2Then our mouth was filled with laughter, and our tongue with shouts of joy; then it was said among the nations, “The Lord has done great things for them.”
3The Lord has done great things for us, and we rejoiced.
4Restore our fortunes, O Lord, like the watercourses in the Negeb.
5May those who sow in tears reap with shouts of joy.
6Those who go out weeping, bearing the seed for sowing, shall come home with shouts of joy, carrying their sheaves.
13You came forth to save your people, to save your anointed. You crushed the head of the wicked house, laying it bare from foundation to roof. Selah 14You pierced with his own arrows the head of his warriors, who came like a whirlwind to scatter us, gloating as if ready to devour the poor who were in hiding. 15You trampled the sea with your horses, churning the mighty waters.
16I hear, and I tremble within; my lips quiver at the sound. Rottenness enters into my bones, and my steps tremble beneath me. I wait quietly for the day of calamity to come upon the people who attack us. 17Though the fig tree does not blossom, and no fruit is on the vines; though the produce of the olive fails and the fields yield no food; though the flock is cut off from the fold and there is no herd in the stalls, 18yet I will rejoice in the Lord; I will exult in the God of my salvation. 19God, the Lord, is my strength; he makes my feet like the feet of a deer, and makes me tread upon the heights. To the choirmaster: with stringed instruments.
28“What do you think? A man had two sons; he went to the first and said, ‘Son, go and work in the vineyard today.’ 29He answered, ‘I will not’; but later he changed his mind and went. 30The father went to the second and said the same; and he answered, ‘I go, sir’; but he did not go. 31Which of the two did the will of his father?” They said, “The first.” Jesus said to them, “Truly I tell you, the tax collectors and the prostitutes are going into the kingdom of God ahead of you. 32For John came to you in the way of righteousness and you did not believe him, but the tax collectors and the prostitutes believed him; and even after you saw it, you did not change your minds and believe him.
The New Revised Standard Version, copyright 1989 by the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
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