Sunday, August 22, 2010

Get Real With God ~ The Urge to Protect

The theme at Totally Tots for the month of August is Community Helpers. When I think about community helpers I think about the many uniformed people that work to provide our safety and maintain order. For some reason the word community just sparks a protective image in my head. I think of those crazy looking signs in neighborhoods with the spooky looking thief. The signs warn that a neighborhood is watching, on guard, and prepared to take action against anyone with malicious intent.

A community helper, in my mind, is someone who goes out of their way for the good of the community. A community helper is willing to sacrifice sleep to put out a fire. They spend a day head to head with the public at their worst and yet are willing to endure a great deal of pain to see them safe. A community worker will look for a way around problems that seem too big to solve. They make a plan and follow it out with precision, choreographed for excellence.

The uniform isn’t what makes them special. In fact many community helpers look like ordinary people. Maybe they haul the garbage away every week. Maybe they treat a sick child and work to restore healing. Maybe they are ordinary Moms and Dads who sit alone in the dark when the city is quiet and pray for God’s favor on its people.

I have police officers in my family and my brother-in-law is a fireman. I have a lot of respect for the jobs they do to keep us safe. I’ve watched politics and apathy from the community wear on them, making the sacrifices they make sting a little at times. It isn’t easy to lay down your life for a friend, try doing it for someone who lacks respect for you. But it’s what they do. It’s who they are.
What these workers are doing as they put on the uniform (whether they realize it or not) is reflecting Christ. Their uniform alone is sending a message to the potential offender that they aren’t to be messed with. They also send a message to the good guys that someone has their back.
If you rise up in the morning and put on the Armor of God (whether you realize it or not) you are sending a message to the enemy that you are a force to be reckoned with. You are an opponent who won’t back down and you have authority and power backing you.

Through every act of alert attention to the needs of those around them, the community helper reflects the nature of God. As a painter reflects the creativity of our Heavenly Father, a community worker reflects God’s drive and motivation to guard His children, protecting them from harm.
Every human act done to protect or provide is a picture of the spiritual work God is doing on our behalf. Even the sanitation worker is a picture of God if you think about it. In the spiritual sense God is removing the garbage to make the house (our hearts) clean. Think of the fire fighter facing the fire and relying on the water pumping through the hose to lessen the flame. We know God as a river of life. He is a source of refreshing when the fire of trial and testing have brought us to our knees. The police officer placing a criminal in handcuffs points to our God who will place eternal chains on our enemy. The doctor, with all his knowledge and medicine, is reflecting God’s healing nature and the lengths He went to in order to see us whole and free of sickness.

And that Mom or Dad sitting alone in the dark praying for a city fast asleep—they reflect God too. Through the darkest night and into the first glimpse of morning God is interceding for us. His whole heart is engaged in our welfare. His eyes are pealed and his ear is turned to our cry. He is a vigilant defender, Mighty to save.

Psalm 5:11 says “But let all who take refuge in you be glad;
let them ever sing for joy.
Spread your protection over them,
that those who love your name may rejoice in you.”

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Heather that was beautiful!

Great job :-)