Have you seen this Church?

I HAVE SEEN THEM, with my own eyes, the hypocrites & liars who deceive others in a lustful quest for power, driven by greed. They commit all forms of atrocity and abuse with the name of Jesus Christ spoken falsely by their lips.

Yet still…

I have seen others, going forth with great courage into slums, jungles, and warzones. Risking their lives to heal the sick, help the poor, and spread the Good News. Some fallen dead for love. The name of Jesus Christ, the last words on their lips.

I have seen others, mothers, fathers, sisters, brothers, children, spouses, workers, teachers, and friends who keep the faith and keep the fort. They stand solid, steady. They show up. They are the pillars of life. And the name of Jesus Christ rests firm on their lips.

And still, I have seen others, churches, communities, groups, and gatherings going out to help those in need. To feed the hungry and clothe the naked and visit the prisoners. To build and repair schools and to rescue the addicted and the unborn. They march with the name of Jesus Christ on their lips.

I have seen yet others who go into dirty subway stations, alleys, brothels, and street corners to rescue and give hope to those who have been kidnapped, forced, or trafficked. Facing a horrific, dreadful danger, they go forth with the name of Jesus Christ on their lips.

And I see the preachers, priests, and pastors, serving diligently, guiding the flock. I see them show compassion and wisdom as they stand in the breach despite the pressure of it all. And the Word of God comes forth powerfully from their lips.

I hear others, singing with great voice, the praises of the Lord. They strum their instruments with skill and passion. They play the drum, the harp, the tambourine. They lift up our spirit with song, melody, and joy and the name of Jesus Christ flows like honey from their lips.

I have seen others suffering, hurting, and sick. In hospitals and homes, no longer able to fend for themselves, near death in bed but at peace with their history and with their God. And the name of Jesus Christ falls like a whisper from their lips.

And I see others, who pray in silence. Monks and nuns or recovering addicts and prisoners… the broken and restored. They pray incessantly with supernatural force as they know it all depends upon God. Nothing else matters, nothing else makes sense. So they pray and they pray and heaven and earth are put into motion as the name of Jesus Christ is invoked by their lips.

And others, I have not seen. No one does. They hurt and suffer in silence. They live in a lonely place of deep solitude nobody knows about but God. And they cry out something impossible from the depths of their soul saying: Father, forgive them. And from the lips of Jesus Christ, he calls them with a grace unknown to most as they alone know him well.  

And all heaven’s angels and saints cry out with the faithful ones in worship and praise: Hosanna in the highest! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord. Hosanna in the highest!

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