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Watchword for the Month

“If they keep quiet, the stones will start shouting!”
Luke 19:40

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Rev M October - March 2021

Dear brothers and sisters allow me before we proceed with meditation, to invite you to join me in thanking the Lord for His great mercy and grace for letting us enter this 5 th week in Lent. We want to thank the Lord especially in view of the fact that many family and friends so near and dear to many of us, have not had this privilege as they are celebrating this Lenten-period with their Lord and Saviour in heaven. All this because of this dreadful and frightening virus called Covid-19. However, we also have the chance now to thank our Lord for providing a vaccination that will hopefully help us through this pandemic!

It is within these circumstances that the words of Jesus are challenging us to stand firm. The scene that is set before our eyes is that of Jesus’ entry into Jerusalem on that first Palm Sunday. Somehow the special ambience that Palm Sunday brings fills us with excitement and expectation. We have had the privilege in Elim for the last couple of years before Covid-19 of having our own procession from the end of Kerk Street with someone sitting on a donkey and the rest of us singing and waving palm-branches until we reach the church for the service with the singing of the Hosanna! This was and may still be in the future, the event that nobody wanted to miss because it brought home the experience of that first Palm Sunday in such an awesome way. It should not be that difficult for us as Moravians to travel back in time and experience that feeling of being present on that particular day when Jesus decided to enter Jerusalem like the King He is, even though He was riding on a donkey! What counts, is that for that few hours He was fully recognised by the people for who He really is – their King, the King of the universe! “Blessed is the King who comes in the Name of the Lord! Peace in heaven and glory to God in the highest” (Luke 19:38 CEV). But, – not everybody was happy; not everybody was singing and shouting for joy; not everybody could recognise that this was their King entering on the back of a donkey. These were the religious leaders of Jesus’ time who felt so threatened by this gentle kind Person entering Jerusalem. And they did not even try to hide their disgust and their fear of feeling threatened by this happy, singing, joyful crowd. “Please, Teacher,” they pleaded, “make your disciples stop shouting!” Maybe they even added that there were old people resting who do not want to be disturbed as some excuse. I can just imagine how utterly surprised they must have felt on hearing Jesus’ answer: “If they keep quiet, these stones will start shouting!” My dearest brothers and sisters, have you ever really thought very hard about the consequences of Jesus’ words to the Pharisees? In these few words He actually touched on the crux of the matter on why we were created. These words emphasised the real purpose for which God created me and you – to worship, praise and glorify His Name at all times! However the tragedy of it all is that there are still any of us who do not realise the great honour that God has bestowed on us to be the ones to at all time worship Him in faith, truth and spirit! But alas! There is a subtle warning hidden in these seemingly simple words of Jesus – Beware! If you don’t want to do it, I am capable as the Lord of all creation, to raise up any other creature to it for Me – even the stones! We are called upon dear brothers and sisters to live out our God-given purpose at all times and therefore we are not to neglect the mutual fellowship as followers of Christ according to apostle Paul. But the words of Jesus also imply that we can not remain silent in the face of injustices, corruption, violence perpetrated against women and children especially and all other evils prevailing in our society and in the world!

The fact of the matter is that we will be just as guilty as the perpetrators if we remain silent while these evils flourish. It was the late Dr. Martin Luther King who proclaimed (and I quote him freely), “For evil to prosper, good people only need to remain quiet in the face of it!” The challenge of these words and the words of Jesus, is that we as the followers of Christ can not afford the luxury of remaining silent when the situation requires of us to stand up and be counted. We are being called upon and challenged, dear brothers and sisters, to take up the baton for the fight against theses many evils that are permeating our lives and that of our children, not only in our country but throughout the whole world! Please take serious note and remember that should we keep quiet, the stone will start to shout out, and lo and behold! What a great shame that will be!!!

Prayer: Dear Lord, Help us in Jesus name! AMEN.

Rev. M October