How Can¬†We Sing the Lord’s Song in a Strange Land?

This morning, when talking¬†with my friend, I realized that many young people and even adults who are¬†dealing with issues or just simply recalling God’s¬†blessings of the past¬†are asking this question, “How can¬†we sing the Lord’s song in a strange land?” ¬†(Psalm 137)

Many in our country and throughout the world are confused, overwhelmed, and even saddened by the frequent occurrences of floods and fires, shootings, frustration, and discrimination which we read about and experience, in this  generation.

We¬†are wondering and pondering on the thought of how can¬†we¬†comprehend, explain, rebuild, restore or bear the hardships of the results of these catastrophic events in our history. How can we¬†even attempt to feel the joy of the Lord in this present age?¬† While the¬†generations of seniors and baby boomers are remembering the way it once was, generations¬†¬†X, Y and Z¬†are asking the question , “What is going on in the here and now?

We see the older generations hanging their harps upon the willows in¬†a place of¬† of¬†lamentation, while the young people¬†are carried away into a¬†place of¬† exploration. The¬†older generations¬†find themselves¬†whining and weeping, while the younger generations are searching and seeking.¬†“Where is God in all of this”, they ask. ¬†One servant has answered, My dear children, “He is where He has¬†always been¬†–infinitely¬†sitting on His throne of righteousness and judgment.”

… I am the Lord, exercising lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness in the earth.

For¬†in these I delight, “says the Lord.¬†¬† Jeremiah 9:24

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One by One! The New Covenant Community

Transforming the New Covenant Community

             One by One!

I was so excited when God said He would use me to bless millions of young people in “This” generation. Will I be speaking in great auditoriums, huge stadiums? How will you do this, Lord? Where will you send me? Much to my surprise, I saw God use me “one” soul at a time in my own backyard.

Within a few days, young relatives, friends and even strangers¬†began to reach out to me with various questions and situations (all from generations X,Y, and Z.) Normally, most of my time was spent engaging in conversation and activities with the traditional seniors, baby boomers,¬†if you will, but not now. God had¬†staged a switch-a roo.¬† You know those times when you think you are on the right track doing exactly what God wants you to do. Then, all of a sudden, He sends a fresh wind that knocks you off of your feet and sweeps you in¬†an entirely new¬†direction.¬†You get up and find yourself asking the question, “What just happened here?”

Well, that is exactly where I am, now. When this happens, all you can do is just say, “Lord here am I! Send me, Send me!” Isaiah 6:8

Good Morning, “OK, Mama, for you I’ll go!” I am convinced all the more that I was indeed called to “This” generation. I talked to a young man who had not been to church in years. He was lost, frustrated, hurt and dislocated. His mother visited him and finally convinced him that church was what was missing in his life and it would help to heal his wound. “Ok, Mama, for you I’ll go!” So he went. It was a holiday weekend. When he got there, the parking lot was filled to capacity. They could hardly find a parking space. He saw people, rushing into the doors, sort of like when he goes to a Saturday night concert. He saw ragged jeans, stretch pants, backpacks, (no purses) and gym shoes, all kinds, all brands. He wore a plaid shirt and khakis thinking that he would go under dressed. You know, sort of not to look too dressed up like “Sunday Best.” Much to his surprise in his mind, he claimed first place for the “most overdressed” award. But his most amazing discovery was the welcome center that looked like a hotel reservation desk. Oh! my gosh! to the immediate right a “green” Starbuck sign! He looked down the long hall and saw a bookstore, tee shirt shop, and ladies clothes. Wow! A mall! He then headed to the sanctuary and thought he had mistakenly opened the door to an auditorium or stadium, then closed the door. He went back to the welcome desk and asked the young lady which way to the sanctuary because he looked for an usher but didn’t see any. (You know the ladies in the uniforms.) The young lady said, “Right this way young man and took him back into the auditorium which he had just left. He sat down in his seat (What! no more pews!) Suddenly, he looked up and saw the stage and was amazed to see a full -fledged band in live concert. (Wow!) Well, I’ll just wait for the preacher. The preacher enter on stage amongst loud hand claps and praise and just took a seat on a stool that looked too small for him. Guess what! Come on now! The preacher too! He had on ragged jeans, a black shirt and a white tee shirt that was hanging out because it was longer than his top shirt. The kind that his mama would run him back inside if he even tried walking out the house dressed like that not to mention wearing it to church. Then he looked up and saw this “big” white Screen light up with a lot of writing that he thought was a bunch of scriptures. Well, what do you know, much to my surprise, it was a business plan for the building of a new sidewalk, additional parking and something else that he says, he doesn’t remember. After one hour of listening to preacher’s presentation in monotone, he lost interest. Oh! Before he left home, he rushed back to get his Bible because his Mama always told him, “Son, Don’t forget your Bible!” He rushed back in, picked it up, blew off the dust and guess what, he didn’t need it, after all. He guessed that they weren’t talking about God or Jesus Christ that particular Sunday. Maybe they do that on some other Sunday. Finally the screen went black and before he knew it everybody rushed out even faster than they came in. My mom told me I could meet a nice girl there. They were gone before I could say, “hello.” The parking lot was cleared in no time. The professional parkers were good at their job not like the Boy Scouts who used to direct church traffic as community projects. Being overwhelmed, knowing his mother had always been a nice Christian church going lady all her life, he couldn’t wait to ask her “Mama, do you see something strange or odd about all of this? Are you as amazed as I am. And you know what, he still doesn’t know. All she said, was “Son, things have changed a lot since you have been to church.” Uhm… I’ll say! But she did mutter in a very low voice ,”Welcome to the New Church!” The grass withereth, the flower fadeth; but the word of God shall stand forever. Isaiah 40:8

Good Morning, I was just pondering the phrase, “You were called to this.” I realized that each of us eventually has to come to face this somewhat “frightful” question. I did! And I found out that my “this”, was “this” generation. (Psalm 71:17-19. After that, all I could do was ask God to direct me through His Spirit to direct my path and chart my course, so I could love and follow Him with all my heart, with all my soul and all my strength. “What is your “this?”







 

Faith Generation

O God you have taught me from my youth,

And to this day I declare your wondrous works,

Now when I am old and gray headed,

O God do not forsake me, until I declare

your strength to this generation;

Your power to everyone to come.

Also , your righteousness, O God is very high.

You have done great things!  Psalm 71:17-19

                                 How Old Are You?

This is a question that is asked many times throughout our lifetime.

And it is a question that has many answers depending who you are and how you feel about age. Some answer, well, “I am as young as I feel.” Others will say, “I don’t discuss my age, it is not important.”

But God says that age is important. God says, I knew you in my mother’s womb.

The days of our lives are three score and ten, by fourscore.