*Sermonette includes local Liberian vernacular
Every morning I spend at least one hour reading headline news in Africa, with particular emphasis on Liberia and West Africa. Much of that period is spent digesting news from my native country, Liberia. Ninety-five percent of the time I am reduced to helplessness, sadness, and some anger, because I can’t have my wish. My wish is that this beautiful country would be alright—life would become normal, a developed country—the people would be happy, healthy, and prosperous—that we would become more serious about God. Every day for the one hour plus I spend reading the news my heart can be burning with melancholy and hurt. Some days just as I start to smile, the small good news is quickly strangled by the many large, big bad news. From then on I go back into prayer. My friend, we have many needs in Liberia. But, what we need most is God and Prayer and seriousness about Jesus Christ.
Liberians, take this or leave it. I come to tell you that the Liberia we are seeing, hearing about, and reading off, is NOT what God has in store for that country. Something has to give. As a dedicated woman of Liberian heritage, Christian and servant of the Living God, I know for a fact that God has great things for that country. Can’t you tell? Ponder this. Liberia and Liberian people are not the last on God’s agenda. Let us stop making it appear like it is.
Whenever a national crisis looms Liberians quickly band together. When calamity hits the land Liberians gather and become first rate Christians. Fasting and Praying! All over the country and worldwide where diaspora Liberians are, talk of prayer dominates our agenda. Falling facedown before God, repeating deep and profound Christian phrases, such as: “My people your let’s pray oh…; God will help us…; Jesus never fail…; Lord, have mercy on us oh; God will see us through…; …If my people who are called by my name shall humble themselves… hear from heaven…heal their land….; All I know God’s in control….;”—and all the religious phrases and Bible quotations of Christianity. When disaster threatens Liberians become passionate about being Christians, and you become very God fearing! As if that is enough for God.
Yes, indeed, God is good. God exacts payment of his people. This is the same God who would only accept “Blood” as punishment for sin. He gave up His one and only begotten son, Jesus Christ—God the Son—to come to earth and be crucified on a cross, bleed (shed His blood) and die, be buried in the earth—as the only acceptable sacrifice for forgiveness of mankind sin. This Son that was sent is God Himself who took on human flesh. God made a manifestation of He, Almighty God, in the form of the creature man. That is how serious Almighty God is about redemption. God is not flattered by your devotion during calamity. God is impressed by your redemption from sin and your preparedness to spend eternity with Him. The Lord will take you back regardless of what you have done, or who you are. You have to do it HIS WAY. He is a covenant keeping God. You must be part of the covenant with HIM. Unless it is done God’s way we will always be reminded of who God is. We will know time after time how serious God is about redemption. Omnipotent God! Doing things His Way. Always.
Let me tell you what the Lord is saying this morning:
"Whenever you come running to me, I hear you. When you are well you turn your backs to me. I want to live with you. You reject me. I choose to make you my sanctuary amidst the dwellings of other gods. You refuse to be my sanctuary. You chose the dwellings of other gods. I have asked you over and over to honor me. You invite and worship pagan gods. I give you beauty. You give me horror. I do not bring evil on my children. When you leave yourself open and separated from me you become better targets for evil trespasses. Evil cohabits in your midst when you rebuff my presence nationally. I am God, who honors obedience. Not your sacrifice. The sacrifice necessary for you has already been made. Were you not in distress would you show me this much glory?"
My friend, the fact of the matter is God is still in control. While we make this doubling effort to call on Jesus during these times of distress, let every Liberian who has chosen Almighty God as Lord and Savior worship and praise the Lord. Do not be tempted to blame God for distress. Repent. Make a determination that when crisis has passed, YOU WILL LIVE FOR ALMIGHTY GOD. You would do things differently. Liberia, you will turn your nation, seriously, into a house of God. Praise and worship The Lord through it all. Therein is the DELIVERANCE.
Blessings and peace,
Servant Hortense Grimes
Founder, Do It For Christ Ministries