WE HEARD THE SCREAMS, SO WE JUST SANG A LITTLE LOUDER
“We were in our church singing and heard the screams coming from the trains, so we just sang a little louder,” he said in a voice heavy with regret.
These are the words of an old man who lived during the Nazi Holocaust during World War II. The railway track to the concentration camps ran behind their church. Those the Nazis deemed unworthy of life were taken to the concentration camps along those tracks. They had heard whispers of what was happening in those terrible places, but like most other people, tried not to think about it and distance themselves from the reality of what was really happening.
What could anyone do to stop it anyway?
“It was so terribly disturbing! We could do nothing to help these poor miserable people, yet their screams tormented us… no one talks about it much any more, but I still hear that train whistle in my sleep. I can still hear them crying out for help. G-d forgive all of us who called ourselves Christians, yet did nothing to intervene.”
by Penny Lea
I found myself in anger, I cried out in despair,
I prayed, “Lord, let them hear me! And let just one person care!”
I raised my voice to Heaven as the train kept moving on
As we passed behind the churchyard I could hear the worship songs.
I cried out all the louder to the Christians there inside,
But they raised the chorus louder, not hearing me outside.
I knew they heard the whistle and the clacking of the tracks
They knew I was going to die and still they turned their backs.
I said, “Father in Heaven, how can your people be
So very hard of hearing to the cry of one like me?”
I shouted, “Please have mercy! Just a prayer before I die,”
But they sang a little louder to the Holy One on High.
They raised their hands to Heaven but blood was dripping down
The blood of all the innocent their voices tried to drown.
They have devotions daily, they function in My name,
And they never even realised it was I upon that train.
And it makes me wonder…
What are the screams that are breaking God’s heart today?
Where are we guilty of ‘singing louder’?
Your kingdom is founded on righteousness and justice; love and faithfulness are shown in all you do… Psalm 89:14
Hate what is evil, love what is right, and see that justice prevails in the courts. Amos 5:15
Speak up for people who cannot speak for themselves. Protect the rights of all who are helpless. Proverbs 31:8
You must see that justice is done, and must show kindness and mercy to one another. Zechariah 7:9
The Lord knows when our spirits are crushed in prison; He knows when we are denied the rights He gave us; When justice is perverted in court, He knows. Lamentations 3:34-36
No, the Lord has told us what is good. What the Lord requires of us is this: to do what is just, to show constant love and to live in humble fellowship with our God. He has showed you, O man, what is good and what does the Lord require of you? To act justly and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God. Micah 6:8
He will be gentle to those who are weak, and kind to those who are helpless. He will persist until He causes justice to triumph, and on Him all peoples will put their hope. Matthew 12:20-21
The kind of fasting I want is this: Remove the chains of oppression and the yoke of injustice, and let the oppressed go free. Share your food with the hungry and open your homes to the homeless poor. Give clothes to those who have nothing to wear, and do not refuse to help your own relatives. Then my favour will shine on your like the morning sun, and your wounds will be quickly healed. I will always be with you to save you; my presence will protect you on every side. When you pray, I will answer you. When you call to me, I will respond. If you put an end to oppression, to every gesture of contempt and to every evil word; If you give food to the hungry and satisfy those who are in need, then the darkness around you will turn to the brightness of noon. And I will always guide you and satisfy you with good things. I will keep you strong and well. You will be like a garden that has plenty of water, like a spring of water that never runs dry. Isaiah 58:6-11
THE ONES WHO DID HELP
like the Ten Boom family during World War II;
and the William Wilberforces and George Muellers…
THEY WILL BE THE HEROES OF HEAVEN
This may seem impossible… but it’s not impossible for me. Zechariah 8:6
Lord Jesus, forgive us for the areas where we might be singing a little louder today. Please show us where Your heart is breaking. Help us to pray about it, then most importantly, show us what You would have us do about it in Your name. One day we will stand before You. Let it not be with regret at what else we could have done, but only with the joy that comes from being in Your presence. Amen.
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