I recently shared that I have a new appreciation for the carol, O Holy Night, and how it suddenly feels like it’s a song written for me and about me, even though it was composed more than 150 years ago. But that’s not the only thing that has stuck out in this song.
Truly He taught us to love one another
His law is love and His gospel is peace
Chains shall He break for the slave is our brother
And in His name all oppression shall cease
Sweet hymns of joy in grateful chorus raise we,
Let all within us praise His holy name
Yeah, I’m weary. I’m worn out. And I wait in anticipation of the return of the One Who Makes All Things New. But in the meantime (which is a mean time, as Dr. Ramsaran used to continually remind our New Testament Survey class), I have a job to do. In fact, all of us who have put on Christ still have a job to do. As long as there is oppression, we have a job to do.
This isn’t a political movement. It’s not a Social Justice Warrior thing. It isn’t a protest statement or part of some “resist” movement, either. And I’m definitely not joining any fad or trend (I am a trendsetter, after all. Remember?). It’s much deeper than that.
It’s at the very core of the Church. It should be, anyway. After all, we claim to follow the One who was born to a couple from a backwoods town (“Can anything good come from Nazareth?” they asked.) in an occupied land, ruled by an oppressive empire where Caesar was proclaimed to be Lord and Savior. The core of our faith is based upon the advent of a baby boy whose arrival was announced to a ragtag group of outcast shepherds and a group of foreigners. We claim to follow a man who, before he went to the cross, chose to spend his time with women, the sick, the prostitutes, the drunkards, the cheats, the liars, the possessed, the oppressed, the “outsiders” and the “unclean.” He made them free.
He makes us free today.
Am I following his example? Am I sharing His good news of peace and freedom? Have you read a headline recently? There is much oppression in this darkened world.
What am I doing about it?
Yeah, I’m weary. But I cannot stop. There’s no time. It sounds like I have a lot of work to do yet. How about you?
Let’s choose to live by the law of love, spreading the gospel of peace. And maybe we can change the world together.