Church this morning was good. The pastor talked about service opportunities. The music featured an old hymn that I enjoyed. It also contained a modern song that had a verse like so:
“You said, “Ask and I’ll give the nations to you”
Oh, Lord, that’s the cry of my heart
Distant shores and the islands will see
Your light, as it rises on us”
My mind thought about the words to this song for a while though. and I ended up feeling like there was something not right about the song. I thought about Bonhoeffer and his recognition that in Christ, all that is not redeemed still remains the Lord’s anyways. In Christ the duality was smashed. Even all not redeemed is still His anyways.
I thought about the dispersion of humanity and the role of sin in human division- how God split the single language of earth into a multitude because men were building a tower to heaven to be like God. It wasn’t God who wanted people to be nations in the first place. Unity under his governance was the original plan. The garden in stasis was the original plan. Pentecost and understanding across places and peoples was the original plan.
I thought about the phrase “Ask, and I’ll give the nations to you”, and I thought, what does that mean? Is this a militaristic anthem, because I am interested in conquering my enemies and foes? Because my enemy is not flesh and blood, according to the New Testament. My enemy is not a nation to be conquered, but an unruly spirit within myself, given to sin and ducking the Spirit when self asserts itself.
And why would God want to give the nations to me, when instead, I should be asking that all nations be given to Him? Praise is not about what I get from God, but rather about who God is to me. His glory and dominion and majesty will be there whether I am walking with Him or not. I suspect His interest is not really in giving other nations over to me, but in seeing His love rule over the nations which join His kingdom.
Anyways, I am glad God puts up with my wandering mind and critical thoughts.
Church was short and touching, hearing from missionaries and about service projects the church is involved in, and I miss serving like I used to, if only I could do it quietly and using what I am really good at to really help in a measurable way somehow, in a quiet but strong way. I need to volunteer and get outside of myself helping others again. I just wsh I could do it in a quiet and consistent and meaningful way.