1 The Lord reigns, let the earth rejoice;
let the many coast lands be glad!
2 Clouds and thick darkness are all around him;
righteousness and justice are the foundation of his throne.
3 Fire goes before him
and burns up his adversaries all around.
4 His lightnings light up the world;
the earth sees and trembles.
5 The mountains melt like wax before the Lord,
before the Lord of all the earth.
6 The heavens proclaim his righteousness,
and all the peoples see his glory.
7 All worshipers of images are put to shame,
who make their boast in worthless idols;
worship him, all you gods!
8 Zion hears and is glad,
and the daughters of Judah rejoice,
because of your judgments, O Lord.
9 For you, O Lord, are most high over all the earth;
you are exalted far above all gods.
10 O you who love the Lord, hate evil!
He preserves the lives of his saints;
he delivers them from the hand of the wicked.
11 Light is sown for the righteous,
and joy for the upright in heart.
12 Rejoice in the Lord, O you righteous,
and give thanks to his holy name!
This is the Psalm I flung open the Bible & read after our Sunday Church Services were over. Oh, I was looking for SOLACE!! My good friend has been in charge of table care for 35 years and she has never had a fire in the church. I have been doing table care for less than a year and there was a fire, this Sunday, on my watch.
New types of candles had been placed under a air vent (due to a huge amount of air pushing the flame from the heating/ac system) that are battery charged and they were mistakenly lighted using fire. I remember thinking times have changed, God isn't just God of fire - but God of all things - even the combustible battery. About 20 minutes into the service, heads started turning towards the chapel. I looked over and... quite literally... there was a foot and a half solid red flame which looked as it had engulfed the chapel tapestry. I made the gasp of 100 people put together and ran to the chapel. Our deacon made it first and the fire was extinguished with people blowing on it. The deacon agreed with me it looked like the tapestry had been involved, (Praise GOD it wasn't) she - like me - didn't know how it would be put out. (Praise GOD we could put it out) We were so fortunate the other 5 combustible batteries didn't blow up. (Thank GOD). The Pastor, about 10 minutes later, said we are blessed the church didn't burn later in the day. Our Pastor was very calm. I wasn't inside.
Being in a Christian community is a great thing. Human events happen like the fire. (Like a car where you know you looked both right and left, but the car accident still happens). Human words fly out, but we don't go home and not return. Christians are flawed. It's like Ghandi said he liked our Christ, but not our Christians. What a blasted shame. Because Christian community still shines. People have an understanding in a Christian community that mistakes will happen, but we need forgiveness. We receive this forgiveness only because of the free gift in Jesus Christ. And because we do, we forgive one another.
Oh, and thank you, Father God, the giant heating system didn't blow the flame onto the church. Thank you, Father God, for my church family who helped me when my daughter died. Thank you, Father God, for my church family who all survived (literally) and overcame when a near tragedy occured. Rejoice in the Lord!!
Again I say Rejoice - Listen