First rays of the summer sun
race to illuminate the small
grove. Its inhabitants awake
The grove was abundant in food
peace and safety. The only
other occupant was
an old country church patiently
awaiting its fold.
Blue birds filled the air
songs of praise.
A sound so pure and clear,
a melody worthy of the Creator’s ear.
The sun climbed ever higher
casting a shadow upon
the man turning the key
opening the large doors of
He always arrived an hour
or two before any other filled
Time to reflect, time
to pray, time to ask
for wisdom, patience, and
feet of clay.
“Lord Jesus, lend me
your eyes that I might
see this flock as you do.
Give me your heart to
love all whom you send
my way and a discerning
mind that wisdom would flow, Amen.”
Standing and grasping his Bible
he started toward the sanctuary
as muffled voices and distant
car doors announced the
arrival of the congregation.
The Pastor knew he would
be here and there was nothing
he could do because the
always received an
invitation from me
and from you.
He would sit in the
very front row knowing
every word of scripture
but not letting it show.
He wasn’t there to learn,
fellowship, or become
more like the Savior. No,
none of those things is
what he did savor.
The Pastor sighed deeply
upon stepping to the pulpit
as he recognized their guest
was already working the room.
The people were settled into their
familiar clicks. The poor sat in the far rear
while the affluent took the lead.
But none sat next to the family
who lived without running water,
Their respectable senses
Tongue clicks and whispers veiled under breath
spread disdain and disgust in the
presence of such an obvious
Over there perched the family of judges,
who would snicker and point with their eyes
to alert one another that there was laughter to be had
or condemnation to be made of those just entering
The Bennet family, fragile as can be,
sat holding one another in their
fear and in their grief. They had lost a son
in Iraq last summer and now their little one
is fighting cancer. Their faith is stretched thin but
they have not given up hope. Our Guest is
trying his best to destroy them but he is failing.
Then you have those who feel it
their duty to reveal your sin, criticize
your worship or prayer life, and condemn
those who are struggling.
In their reason,
one is sick, barren, in
financial woe or experiencing
heart ache due to some unconfessed
“Get right with God and your
hardship will be delivered.” is the chant
they cry in disapproving condemnation.
Driving divisions among God’s people
is his favorite activity and we are
so willing to play.
Yes, he is here and they invited him
as they do regardless of the warnings.
He knows the Bible better than most
Christians but he does not see its truth.
His hardened heart does not feel
the forgiving love of Christ.
Instead, it angers him and
he takes his fury out upon
“They have more than us. She is far prettier or talented
than I. I heard…cheated on his wife. God cannot
love or forgive you since you did that horrible
thing in your past. You are not good enough to succeed. Your
beliefs are childish superstitions. You will fail.”
Lies, his favorite lies, he uses against
He has enjoyed great success in
invading the church and scattering the flock.
His minions carry out his orders sewing
discord, jealousy, bigotry, hatred, and
cynicism where ever they go.
Church after church has fallen to his
He is becoming angrier
and fiercer as he
sees his time ebbing away.
He tortures any who work
to follow the Savior’s path.
Yes, Satan is the first one in church
and the last one to leave because turning
one Christian to sin bringing him to ruin
will convince 1000 more souls to reject
Jesus because of his sinful people.
Satan loves to use fallen Christians because
it hurts the Father deeply when his children stray.
He will never give up, never stop, and never
Children of God, take warning and
be on guard so you do not
become one of Satan’s favorite tools.
In a world of pain and destruction,
be determined not to add to the
brokenness of Creation.
and healing will be had in your church,
home, work place, social group, neighborhood
and maybe, just maybe, it will keep going and
heal our lands.
“If my people, who are called by my name, shall humble themselves and pray then I shall hear from heaven and heal their lands.” God