Thursday, 19 November 2015
Forgive us our Trespasses as we forgive those who trespass against us
Since writing last week about my ambivalence around Remembrance Day and Pacifism, we have been faced with what seems to be a world changing events in Paris. From the perspective of the West It is actually just a continuation and intensification of events that have been ongoing since 9-11. For people in the Iraq, Afghanistan, Syria and other countries in the region there has been, it seems, ever increasing terror and chaos which has spilled over to the West.
There are many questions which arise from these events for us. For Christians we have the quandary about how we react to the events and approach to whole seemingly new approach to warfare with an enemy that can appear out of the crowd without warning and fad into the background just quickly. As I address in my sermon yesterday, how are we to love our neighbours who seem to be the manifestation of evil? How can we possibly forgive those who trespass against us in these terrible ways and yet how can we not if we are to ask God to forgive our trespasses? My wife Lorna led the prayers of the people at St. John by the Lake in Grand Bend yesterday. The prayers do a very good job of express how we can pray in times like this. I have attached a copy for you to consider and invite you to pray them. We pray that God redeem those whose hearts have turned to stone and in whom compassion has died. We ask that by the power of your Holy Spirit, we draw back from revenge and with your help establish conditions for peace among nations and between individuals, as you draw all people to yourself in love. We ask God that it will be a step towards reconciliation. Amen