Theme for September: Be Opened, Be Strong, Fear Not!
“The wicked say: ‘Let us beset the just one, because he is obnoxious to us.'” Something Wicked This Way Comes is a 1962 dark fantasy novel by Ray Bradbury which tells the story of a pair of 13-year-old best friends and their nightmarish experience with a traveling carnival that comes to their town. It describes magnificently how they learn about combating fear and darkness that exist in and all around them. As an outstanding piece of literature, it is a most significant and brilliant way of speaking about the passage into adulthood from practical innocence and how that particular ingress into another stage of life can be frightening when one has to admit that there is wickedness in this world, including death. “Let us condemn him to a shameful death; for according to his own words, God will take care of him.” This is the most fascinating and spiritual enlightening way to begin our Sabbath! The Lord Jesus entered a very sinful and wicked world to save us who want to spend all of eternity with Him and learn and experience the grace of living a life of true freedom to cast off the deeds of darkness that keep us from fully becoming Christians. One might say that the earlier in our spiritual lives that we adopt this life-giving principle, the better. “Beloved: Where jealousy and selfish ambition exist, there is disorder and every foul practice.”
It is now clear that the process into spiritual maturity must include an understanding and foreknowledge of how evil works and the ultimate and forever remedy that will bring us all victory. “Behold, God is my helper; the Lord sustains my life.” We can not march against the forces of wickedness without the loving mercy and strength of our Savior, Jesus Christ. His ultimate sacrifice of selfless love guaranteed that abandonment would never happen, and his teaching about life learned as children would never be forgotten as well. “Whoever receives one child such as this in my name, receives me; and whoever receives me, receives not me but the One who sent me.” What we have received on this fine Sunday is nothing short of a spiritual paradox. While we must be ready to confront and defeat whatever wickedness might be arriving at the cusp of childhood, it is the pearls and gems of the childlike state that we will need as an adult, mature Christians to share the crown of life and love with Christ the Lord.
“Fairy tales do not tell children that dragons exist. Children already know that dragons exist. Fairy tales tell children the dragons can be killed.” G.K. Chesterton
“Be Not Afraid.” Jesus