Remembering and walking forward

Today and over the weekend, as we look back as a nation and remember the pain, cost, and sacrifice of past wars, we commit ourselves once again to work and pray for reconciliation, peace, justice, and renewal especially where there is violence and war.  These are important moments of corporate contemplation. 

It is clear from the very first pages of our Scriptures just how devastating our corporate rebellion of God is on the way things are.  Violence has never been far away and the whole world groans for redemption.  Even in Genesis 4, back at the start of it all, we hear the ache of creation.  “What have you done?” God asks Cain.  “Listen! Your brother’s blood cries out to me from the ground.”

Cries from the ground continue to rise towards our Maker and we echo them in our own aching prayers this weekend knowing that God sees everything and will judge the world with righteousness. 

And this weekend, as we gather on the Lord’s Day once again, the weekly reminder of resurrection, we remind ourselves that through Jesus’s own suffering how God brings about forgiveness, justice, righteousness, and reconciliation.  None of us merit this grace.  It is unwarranted and undeserved – such is the marvel of God’s mercy revealed in Christ.  But as we take hold of it, receiving this free gift, we know that we are also being called into allegiance to this cross, called to dedication to the way of Christ, and called into commitment to total discipleship.

‘Church is the plural of disciple’ and a church of Jesus is only worthy of his name as a community of disciples, fully devoted followers of his way of grace. 

May God once again move us and stir us to follow Christ in full obedience to his ways, not just as individuals, but as a community together.