HAPPY BIRTHDAY BAHAMAS!! On Saturday of this week our nation will celebrate 37 years of Independence. Thirty-seven years is not a long time for an independent nation, but despite this fact, we as a nation and a people have been richly blessed by God notwithstanding the circumstances we find ourselves in at this time.|
In spite of our short comings, we have come a long way and we have so much to give thanks to God for. We are reminded in Holy Scripture that the nation that survives is not the nation with the power, nor the nation with the military might, intellect, or wealth; but, it is the nation whose God is the Lord.
As we give thanks for 37 years of independence we need to remember this fact and remember from whom all things come. A nation who forgets God can face the same fate that Israel faced during the reign of a King Asa in 2 Chronicles. For many years, the people of Israel did not worship the true God. They lived without God's laws. In their times of rebellion against God there was no peace. Problems troubled the nation on every hand. Crime was on the increase everywhere. There were external wars, and internal fighting everywhere (sounds familiar?). they were besieged with many problems, but the story does not end there: Whenever they turned again to the Lord God of Israel in their distress, and searched for him, he helped them, and restored them, making them a powerful nation again.
We may not want to admit that we have forgotten God, after all, we still have prayers in school. In fact, we have prayers at the beginning of all kinds of meetings, conferences, political rallies and any or all occasions. We still are a 'a going to church' people and one can find a church of some kind on just about every street and in every shopping centre. However, the true test is, "Are we living as a people whose God is our Lord?"
As we hear the story of Jesus sending out the seventy, in the Gospel for today, we can not help but ask ourselves, "Have we forgotten God?" Are we still his witnesses preaching the Good News that the Kingdom of God is near?" That was the job of the original seventy missionaries, and that is our job as the church in our nation today. The seventy missionaries were God's network of faithful followers who were sent out to spread the Good News. We need to keep that network active today spreading the Good News to all to whom we come in contact.
Let us not for a minute believe that as an individual we can not make a difference, because we can make a difference one small act at a time. May we get up from the pews and go out into the world knowing that there is a great need out there. There is a world full of hurt and people are just looking for a ray of hope to get them through. May we offer Jesus the Christ as the ray of hope that is needed in our country facing desperate times. May we be the seventy that make a difference in the life of all God's people even if it is only one person. May we be the light of Christ in our nation, a holy nation, a nation blessed by God - One People, One Nation, Under One God.
GOD KNOWS BEST
God's never at a loss; He knows just what to do.
He's several steps ahead of folks like me and you.
He had these seven years in place before he flung the stars in space.
And long before our birth we had a purpose to fulfill on earth
He's ahead of you and me and he knows what we're going through
And though our parting puts us to the test, be assured our God knows best.
(adapted from God Knows Best by Bobette Bryan)
from Fr. Mike