Second Sunday in Lent – Providence

NIV Psalm 127:1   Unless the LORD builds the house, its builders labor in vain. Unless the LORD watches over the city, the watchmen stand guard in vain.

I received a petition in the mail this last week.  The sender asked me to circulate it in the church I am privileged to serve.  The petitioner wanted to put God and the Bible back in public schools.

I have no doubt the person who sent me this petition means well.  I have no doubt they believe they are promoting something good.  The problem is believing that political action will invoke a stronger presence of God in our public life.  It will not.  In fact, what it does is reduce God to being no more than a cultic deity that takes pleasure from symbolic proclamations.

In the beginning years of Christianity the government banned Christianity.  Christians were persecuted and killed.  The coinage of the day had the image of Caesar.  The vows were those allegiance to human “gods”.  During this time the church thrived.  During this time the Faith changed the world.

If we want to see a change in our own country and culture we would be better served by seeking to develop the means of grace (both those of piety and service) that will strengthen the bond of love and trust in our Lord.  If we want to change our schools we need first to strengthen the faith of our children.  Family times of worship, prayer and the study of Scripture will bring about more change than political proclamations.  Commitment to one’s church in both word and deed will have much more influence upon the lives of children than generic generalized prayers.  Seeking to be a person whose life shows a sincere and consistent desire to be obedient to Jesus and living in a manner that demonstrates a dedication to the core values   set forth by the fruits of the Spirit will impact our youth.

NIV Deuteronomy 4:7  What other nation is so great as to have their gods near them the way the LORD our God is near us whenever we pray to him?

NIV 1 Corinthians 5:4  When you are assembled in the name of our Lord Jesus and I am with you in spirit, and the power of our Lord Jesus is present,

Vocatus atque non vocatus, Deus aderit
Bidden or unbidden, God is present