Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Let us rise up and build

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Louisana's governor has declared today a day of prayer. And along with the dear people in the US, please let's also include in our prayers those in the stampede in Baghdad.


I wanted to share an email I got yesterday from my friend in Florida (mentioned Monday). I asked him how he was praying at this time.


Okay...hurricanes...I have to admit...I am a little in shock as well. I know [my wife] and i are looking for the best way to send contributions...etc....but it is a hard one to deal with. In many ways...it is like trying to make sense of the tsunami and its aftermath. You can look for as many positives as you want, but they are hard to find. You know this will bring people together...you know there will be many inspiring stories...but knowing that thousands are homeless...and that so many died...it is a hard one to swallow.

All i can really do this morning is humbly turn to God...and reiterate what I know to be spiritually true about man and his relationship to God. I know that life is Spirit...never in nor of matter...and that life is eternal because it is spiritual. So, whether my limited human perception can see life or not...I know life is indeed going on for all of those people.

I also know that God is meeting every human need...and that it is not about houses and possessions...but it is about Love...and that God will meet every human need with abundance. I am seeing that man has never been separate from God's care...and that good is constantly going on. Love is the law, and I am doing my best to give no power to any news report, image, or aftermath that tries to present a power in opposition to God. This is what I am sticking with this morning.


The purity of this prayer brought tears to my eyes. Even through all our sorrow, these spiritual truths are true. Spirituality allows us to feel sorrow and hope at the same time—and know that while sorrow endures for a night, joy cometh in the morning.


I'm also appreciating this week's Christian Science Bible Lesson. It includes the story of Nehemiah, who was inspired by God to rebuild the city of Jerusalem—to heal the breaches in the walls even.


I find so many parallels here with New Orleans. One of the most rousing sentences in the Bible is the people's reply to Nehemiah's call to action: "Let us rise up and build." The Bible then says, "So they strengthened their hands for this good work."


This vision moved me yesterday: The people of New Orleans, with the help of the world community, rising up and rebuilding their city. Our prayers and contributions can give them the strength they need for this mighty work, and we'll see a city rising from the ruins the like of which has never been seen before.


At the end of Nehemiah's story, everyone can tell that "this work was wrought of our God." We'll see God's merciful hand again at the mouth of the Mississippi. Let's keep that vision in mind.

Through toil, struggle, and sorrow, what do mortals attain? They give up their belief in perishable life and happiness; the mortal and material return to dust, and the immortal is reached.




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