What do you look forward to in life? What would you consider the highlight of your week?
What we anticipate for in life reflect our priorities and securities.
We hope for the fulfilment of desires that occupy our minds and beset our hearts.
A Danish Christmas Tale
Chapter 2: The Anticipated Day
By Joanne Liaw Sook Ling (17 October 2016)
Dedicated to a dear friend who inspired the poem.
She got ready for the anticipated day
It was Sunday which meant there should be no delay
In attending the service; though her place of stay
Was in the church; for she cherished her dear Lord's Day
With her Bible in hand, she proceeded keenly
Through a long passageway to the main sanctuary
All the pews were unoccupied and empty
The service hadn't begun for it was still early
'Wondering which pew to occupy, my daughter?'
Her blue eyes lit up at the voice of her father
Not the bad but the good one who adopted her
And rescued her from the harsh life of the gutters
Her habit of selecting pews was nothing new
'Yes, I am now choosing the most comfortable pew
Which will offer the clearest panoramic view
Of you, as you preach the Gospel of Matthew'
Reverend Theodore grinned at Ashley's compliment
'I'm relieved to hear that because for a moment
I thought you were seeking a pew that was hidden
So that your slumber may not be apparent'
Ashley's eyes twinkled as she smiled mischievously
'Well, that may be the true motive; we shall soon see
If I'll listen to your sermon attentively
Or give in to slumber should my eyes get heavy'
Theodore, also known as Ted, chuckled amusedly
'It's the former, not the latter, I hope to see'
Ted stood at a towering height; strong and sturdy
His dark grey eyes were kind, serene and yet lively
All of a sudden, they heard a great commotion
Ted drew near and peered through the window with caution
'What is it, dad?' Ashley asked with apprehension
'It is one of those liberals' demonstrations'
Ashley could see people marching in formation
Wielding placards, but thankfully, not real weapons
Their loud voices filled the streets with rising tension
Their plea for freedom was chanted with strong passion
'Dad, do you stand alongside their stance?' asked Ashley
'The abolition of absolute monarchy
In our country will come to pass eventually
The call is getting stronger for democracy
I stand alongside them, but not wholeheartedly
Because to invest all hopes in democracy
Instead of our sovereign God is idolatry
No system can deliver justice perfectly
Earthly kingdoms and governments will rise and fall
The voice of the people changes with different calls
No human ruling is perfect after the fall
Save the reign of Jesus who is Lord over all
His kingdom is not of this world; it's eternal
It will stand tall when all other nations crumble
It's unseen by eyes that look to the temporal
But to those who look to God, it is visible'’
Ashley pondered over the words of her father
'To ignore the current events, I would prefer
There's bliss in ignorance but sooner or later
I will have to keep our nation in my prayers'
Ted sighed as he watched the zealous demonstrators
'For now, let peace be at the heart of our prayers
May they not employ violence in their endeavours
May our Lord's wisdom guide them instead of anger
Well, you should have many pews to choose from today
We got no winds of the protest, to our dismay
We were unprepared for this in every way
Church attendance will hit its lowest this Sunday'
TO BE CONTINUED…
Points for Reflection:
Jesus answered, “My kingdom is not of this world. If my kingdom were of this world, my servants would have been fighting, that I might not be delivered over to the Jews. But my kingdom is not from the world.”
(John 18:36 ESV)
· Ashley’s anticipated day of the week was Sunday. She looked forward to hearing from God’s Word and meeting with God’s people.
· The liberals’ anticipated day was the demonstration. They longed for democracy and liberation from absolute monarchy.
· While it is not wrong to be active on the political scene, the important question is not rooted in external behaviours but the desires of the heart. Were the liberals ultimate hope in the establishment of democracy or in King Jesus?
· Before we point an accusing finger at the liberals, we should take a step back and realise that we are not much different from them.
· Just as the liberals longed to be liberated from the clutches of absolute monarchy, so do we often desire to dethrone Jesus and set ourselves as kings of our own lives, deciding what is right and wrong for ourselves.
· What are you setting your hopes on? On this earthly kingdom or Christ’s eternal kingdom?