Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Remember…and Pray!


[Photo of the Boston Marathon Bombing]

 “For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous and his ears are attentive to their prayer, but the face of the Lord is against those who do evil.”
 —1 Peter 3:12


At 2:49 p.m. EDT on April 15, 2013, two pressure cooker bombs exploded near the finish line of the Boston Marathon on Boylston Street, killing three people and injuring 264 others, many very seriously. The dead included Krystle Marie Campbell, 29, a restaurant manager from Medford, MA; Lu Lingzi, a Chinese national and Boston University graduate student from Shenyang, Liaoning, China; and Martin William Richard, an eight-year-old boy from the Dorchester neighborhood of Boston, MA.

Certain events that occur during the course of our lives merit our remembering them. This is one such event, for it represents the personification of evil. Nothing can justify the taking of innocent human lives. That this bombing took place in response to a radical perversion of religion makes it all the more tragic.

As believers in the Lord Jesus Christ, we understand that the question we should ask is not, “Why did this happen?” Rather, we should ask, “What can we learn from this terrible event?”

I suggest that one thing we can learn is that evil will never prevail. Evil will never win.

It is fitting that the first anniversary of this horrible event occurs during Holy Week. For the very death, burial, and resurrection of our Lord Jesus Christ set a marker in the sands of time. He conquered sin, and death, and evil. The bonds of Satan were broken at the foot of the cross. Death gave way to victory when Jesus rose from the grave.

As we celebrate our triumphant Lord and King this week, let us remember the destruction that evil caused in Boston one year ago today. But, let us also recognize that evil is an already-defeated foe. Evil will never win. The love, mercy, and grace of God will always prevail.

In searching the internet in preparation for this blog post, I discovered a poem written a few days after this terrible bombing by someone who was obviously moved by this event. Imagine my amazement when I learned the author of the poem was actually a high school classmate of mine. Nearly 49 years have passed since we graduated from high school. During that time our paths have never crossed until now. It is really quite amazing how God can use events to reacquaint us with very special people from our distant pasts.

Here then is the poem which perfectly expresses the reality that comes out of a tragedy that occurred one year ago today:

                 Never Win
 You will never win, but you try
For no bounds your ego knows
You take captives
But only those who allow
Because your power is a sham
An illusion, no depth, built on sand
Beauty drives you crazy
It must be marred and made ugly
For beauty and truth belong to your enemy
The one you want to be, but never can
You thrive on lies
Pain and cruelty your sidekicks
You need them, no strength of your own
Truth can't be destroyed
But you twist and stretch
Making distortion and perversion
It is no use, you will never win
But you don't know
Devoid of wisdom, you keep trying
But you will never win
 —Jackie Nuzzo    Copyright © 2013. Used with Permission. All Rights Reserved.


Christ has won the victory. Praise God that evil never wins!


Copyright © 2014 by Dean K. Wilson. All Rights Reserved.


Friday, April 11, 2014

The Main Thing


[Photo of a man with his arm raised in obedience]

 “And this is love: that we walk in obedience to his commands.”
 —2 John 1:6a

As we enter Holy Week, I remember a conversation I had on an airplane the week between Palm Sunday and Easter more than fifteen years ago. It was an early morning Delta flight from Hartford to Atlanta. I sat quietly in my seat with my Bible open to the Psalms.

“Are you a Christian?” my seat mate asked?

“I am,” I replied.

“I’ve never understood what Christianity’s all about,” he continued. “What's the main thing?”

As I pondered how to answer, I thought of a gospel song I had learned as a teen: “I Surrender All.” I realized that this song describes what following Jesus is all about—surrendering my will to His will.

Here’s a video of one of my long-time favorite groups, Max Mace and The Heritage Singers, with their rendition of this song. I hope you enjoy it.

[Graphic of a play video icon]

May God grant each one of us a soul-enriching Holy Week, as we draw near to the foot of the Cross.

Copyright © 2014 by Dean K. Wilson. All Rights Reserved.