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12 Dec 2020

A Sermon: Proverbs 11: 29  He that troubles his own house shall inherit the wind.
The words of Solomon’s adjutant as he spoke to him, but his words were lost on him which he later regretted. There are those we say that the church should not be involved in the political-life of its country but church does each time it applies for permission to do something, thus as America face 2 most difficult crisis we make our voice known. 
Sometimes it's hard to speak the truth but covid-19 now controls our lives and a president making  mockery of the will and laws of his people; thus,  we stand to affirm the words of the proverb, “He that troubles his own house shall inherit the wind’.
Throughout the years America has shown its greatness to many around the world, they look to America for leadership, strength, courage but in the age of a self-serving-president, who is a stranger to truth, America has lost its standing in the world.
In this Advent season we should be preparing to celebrate the coming of our Lord, but the bells and carols of Christmas have been silent, covid-19 brings precaution in  church attendance, and much more we grieve over the deaths of nearly 300,000 lives it has taken. It's an  unforgivable pandemic, yet in the midst of this, a president see’s only  himself and strangles his citizens into death traps with rallies not wearing masks.  
We  have seen disasters before, war,  mass killings, youth violence  and countries in the throng of civil war in Africa.  We have seen  decline of  church membership and again we reflect.  
Nothing I say or write will change much, in this time of social media where everyone has an instant opinion, facts or nay, and nothing is  given thought or consequences but the church must hold on to its values and speak truth when necessary, always. The pandemic has driven us away from its doors, but we live in hope that this  soon return and that we again live in the joy we once knew. 
Charles Wesley in his companion hymn to his carol 'Joy to the World' in northern England, to a well attended but quiet church asked them a question  “And are we yet alive” in this repose hear him try to stir up  a sleeping congregation:
“And are we yet alive, 
and see each other’s face
Glory and thanks to Jesus give, 
for his almighty grace”
And if they did not hear him he again lamented 
“Preserved by power divine, 
to full salvation here
Again in Jesus praise we join, 
and in his sight appear”
Perhaps Wesley saw into the future “PERHAPS{“, he saw the dangers to coming generations, there has been 3 global pandemics since his time and countless wars and mischief but he sends forth the question...
“What troubles have we seen, 
what mighty conflicts past
Fighting’s without and fears within, 
since we assemble last”
As I give thanks for this birthday I adhere, learn and pay  heed, that “He that troubles his own house shall inherit the wind".
Let  us  know the conflicts  we now see will one day pass away and in  recognition of our Lord's birthday we live to chart the way for future generations sharing his loving kindness that brings peace and goodwill to all. 
Hear Wesley one last time.. 
Let us take up the cross, 
till we the crown obtain
And gladly reckon all things lost, 
So we may Jesus gain
In the name of the Father, Son and Holy Ghost. Amen 

Hartley PB/ACW


Reaching Out to the World and..... Beyond
Under the Protection of the Cross

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