Monday, September 17, 2012

A Word for Communities in Flames

A traveler found a beautiful marble statue of Jesus in a small French village during World War Two. Jesus stood in the courtyard of a quaint little church, hands outstretched. One day a bomb struck too close and dismembered the statue. After the battle was over and the enemy had passed through, village citizens thought to reconstruct the pieces of their beloved statue.

This statue was no work of art by Michelangelo or Bernini, but it was part of their lives and they loved it. They gathered and reassembled the broken parts, but could not find the statue’s hands. “A Christ without hands is no Christ at all,” a villager lamented.

“Hands without scars … yes. But what’s a Lord without hands? We need a new statue,” others exclaimed.

Another idea finally prevailed. They attached a brass plaque to the base of the statue that read, “I have no hands but your hands.” Years later someone saw that inscription and wrote:

I have no hands but your hands to do my work today.
I have no feet but your feet, to lead men on the way.
I have no tongue but your tongue to tell me how I died,
I have no help but your help to bring men to God’s side.

Pastors are not mechanics to keep the church in good repair. Their call involves equipping the saints for the ministry. In following Christ, we learn that it requires more than we have, so we ask for what we need with obvious faith, and depend upon Him rather than ourselves. Sister Theresa dreamed of building an orphanage with three pennies. Her superiors told her it was impossible. Smiling, she said in her dream, “I know, but with God and three pennies, I can do anything!”

Our world struggles in a climactic battle between good and evil, between the way of the cross and the shadow of the sword. As we search for solutions, there is one thing we can know: with God, and our best; we can achieve, whatever it is God wants us to do!

From Warner's World, this is

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