|Moody Bible Institute Symphonic Band at West Hill Baptist|
Each instrument of the orchestra has its own voice but plays in harmony with the whole. Despite the size or power of an instrumental section, no one group lords it over the others. Each needs the other because no one group incarnates the full meaning of the composition.
As we listened to Brandenburg Concerto No. 3, BWV 1048, by Johann Sebastian Bach, the contribution of each instrument in seemingly perfect harmony touched the depths of my soul as if spiraling down from heaven itself. I imagined how it might be if the Perfection and Glory of heaven were to descend to Earth and sweep away all of the present disharmony, disunity, and strife. Then, I was reminded that as an expression of Bach’s profession of faith, his aim was to give “Glory to God Alone” as signified by his practice of writing Soli Deo Gloria on his finished manuscripts. My faith was renewed in God Who has gifted men like Bach and Handel to make it their purpose to bring glory to Him by their beautiful and moving musical compositions.
|Steven Spielberg & Liam Neeson on set of "Schindler's List"|
As I listened to the conclusion of “Three Pieces from ‘Schindler’s List,” I remembered the many parallels between the Nazi holocaust and the current “American holocaust” which has taken the lives of over 57 million unborn human beings since the Roe vs. Wade Supreme Court ruling in 1973. Truly, the abortion of these innocent lives is one of the greatest tragedies of human history. However, I was encouraged by an experience I had had earlier on this Lord’s Day.
A few hours earlier I had honored an earlier invitation of the Wayne-Holmes Right to Life (WHRTL) Chapter to attend an afternoon worship service in celebration of God’s gift of life as part of their annual Sanctity of Human Life Sunday program. I was encouraged to hear Ohio Right to Life Trustee, Scott Wiggham relate the progress of the Pro-Life Movement in Ohio, and then to join with these folks in praying. We prayed (in part) as follows:
Lord, have mercy! We ask You, God, to hold these little ones in your arms. Bless and protect them. May they know love and contentment in Your presence. Bless mothers who are with child; may they never resort to abortion. Forgive those who have had, performed, or encouraged abortions. Turn their hearts away from sin and help them to see the sanctity of ALL life that is created in your image.
Alone this morning, I reflected once again on the heavenly harmonies that were provided by the Moody Symphonic Band yesterday evening, and the harmony of Christian brothers and sisters who gathered yesterday afternoon to praise our Creator for the gift of life. As has been my habit, I read the Psalm appointed for today, January 19, which was Psalm 139. In it, David reflects on God’s omniscience, even to the point of knowing all about David while he was as yet unborn:
My frame was not hidden from You, When I was made in secret, And skillfully wrought in the depths of the earth; Your eyes have seen my unformed substance; And in Your book were all written The days that were ordained for me, When as yet there was not one of them. – Psalm 139: 15-16
|My frame was not hidden from You, God|
The hormone, CG, is the tiny embryo’s way of making his or her first “cry” to mom, saying, “Mother, I am here. I hope you won’t have your monthly period. Instead, I want you to protect and nourish me while God’s wonderful plan works in harmony between us like a symphony to unfold in proper order each of my bodily systems. Soon, my nervous system, and before a month is passed, then my heart will be beating. Before you know it, you will feel me moving inside of you and I will begin to hear your voice and become acquainted with your movements.”
Do you see the Earth-shattering contrast between the harmony of God’s creation and the discord introduced by the fall of man in the Garden and the subsequent rebellion, pride, and violent acts? The harmony, or Shalom, of God’s creation includes the development of a human life beginning at conception and leading through a seamless path forward toward birth like a symphony performed without flaw by an orchestra. Yet, the sinful discord of abortion continues to interrupt this harmony in all too many instances like a meteor blast into an auditorium during symphony orchestra performance.
|Marchers in Support of Sanctity of Human Life|
|M.L. King Jr. & niece, Alveda King, civil & Pro-Life leader|
With this faith, we will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of hope. With this faith, we will be able to transform the jangling discords of our nation into a beautiful symphony of brotherhood. With this faith, we will be able to work together, to pray together, to struggle together, to go to jail together, to stand up for freedom together, knowing that we will be free one day. – Martin Luther King, Jr. (1963)
Prayer: Father in Heaven, thank you for Your encouragement through the heavenly harmonies of a symphonic band and the blessed fellowship of fellow Christians praying on Sanctity of Life Sunday; and then today, to reflect on the efforts of Dr. King and the peaceful protests He led on behalf of human rights which contributed much to the progress in reconciliation among racial groups in America. Remind me continually of my own double-mindedness. You’ve made me walk with You in peace and to enjoy harmony all around me; but, my heart is deceitful and tends to promote discord. Remind me of my constant need of repentance from sin and refilling with your Holy Spirit. And would you also bring revival to America, a nation so capable of great accomplishments for good; but, like me, so prone to deception and discord. Renew within me a commitment to do my part in sharing the Gospel of repentance, reconciliation and revival in an America—for her only hope lies in whether individuals and families will respond to Your call through your people full of the love of Christ and His Holy Spirit—the very Source of truth, justice, mercy—and harmony. Amen.