David said, “The Lord is on my side, whom shall I fear?” The older I get, the more I understand that great saying, “That whatsoever we have spoken in darkness shall be heard in the light, and that which we have whispered in the ear shall be shouted from the housetops.”
“The deeds we do, the words we say, into still air they seem too fleet; we count them past, but they shall last, to the great judgment day, and we shall meet.”
Jesus spreads his kindness to the outcast, and he offers his friendship to the exile. The scripture tells us, “He is gone to be guest with a man that is a sinner.” During his visit, he changed the sinner into a saint. Restitution took the place of greed. The home of the sinner became the temple of the Lord. His mission was to seek and find the sinners and forgive them. That is still his mission.
Long ago, a startled shepherd was ordered to visit the court of the mightiest of earthly potentates, and to address him on matters of state.
God said to Moses, “Come now, therefore, and I will send you unto Pharaoh, and I will send you also to the children of Israel.” Moses said to God, “Behold, when I come and say, ‘The God of your fathers hath sent me unto you, and they shall say, what is his name?” God said to Moses, “Thus shalt thou say unto the children of Israel, “I am hath sent me unto you.” I am — what? “I am the bread of life! I am the true vine. I am the light of the world. I am the door! I am the good shepherd! I am the way, the truth and the life! I am the resurrection. I am alpha and omega! I am the alphabet. He means that he cannot be exhausted.
For the love of God is broader than the measure of man’s mind; and the heart of the eternal is most wonderfully kind.
Henry Vaughan describes to us the whole duty of man:
“To love our God with all our strength and will;
To covet nothing, to devise no ill
Against our neighbors; to procure or do
Nothing to others which we would not do
Our very selves; not to revenge our wrong;
To be content with little; not to long
For wealth and greatness; to despise or jeer
No man, and, if we be despised, to bear;
To feed the hungry; to hold fast our crown;
To take from others naught; to give our own;
These are his precepts, and alas, in these
What is so hard but faith can do with ease.”
Edwin Markham gave us this little gem: “Outwitted, he drew a circle that shut me out, heretic, rebel, a thing to flout, but love and I had wit to win; we drew a circle that took him in!”
When you pray, no matter what you want, always end your prayer with “Not my will, Lord, but Thine be done.” He will always send you the best. When you pray, always listen for that voice which will whisper in your ear, telling you the right thing to say and do in your circumstance.
Robert V. Ozment is a retired United Methodist minister.