"The labor of building up the earth is the labor of nations."
Mabuhay! In the last monthly challenge, we took a look at the gift of nationhood.
To review, our citizenship - born from what national affinities God has chosen to awaken in the each human heart - is something we must always choose to receive.
From this choice, every present generation become bound together in the freedom of nationhood.
The mantle of patriotism is not something we can blindly assume - not in our prayers and most certainly, as all things rise and fall from the spirit - not in our works.
And the unknown earth can not be tamed by anything less than our nations.
- selah -
Truly, we can not hope to overcome the difficulties the Providence of the LORD has adequately placed before the generations of the children of Mankind separated into tribes, families, and individuals. Blood relationships by themselves are imperfect and must be perfected in the spirit and in the field of human community.
The planet we are given to inhabit - as a whole - belongs to a family of nations. It is not the possession of one or two or three nations but of all nations together - from the least to the most responsible.
If the nations of the world forget this, if we forget this, we all know now from each of our remembrances that what we shall reap is neither peace nor the blessings that this peace secures for our generations from God but the pain and the loss of war and the scattering, maddening darkness of War.
Therefore, if this family of nations is to reclaim its rightful place at the head of this world and reassert the Peace of the Brotherhood of Mankind by the grace of the LORD, our God, upon this earth and all its living creatures, we must now work to understand the work of nationhood.
Peace, like love, is a word that has almost been emptied out of its true meaning. It is no longer something that easy, superficial impressions can attempt to grasp - if we are to know how to understand the peace that is the common trust of our nations, we must actively seek it.
Toward this end, as an aid to the seeking in thy heart, I have written much about this peace in the main body of this blog.
Peace IS the craft of nations. We can see from the devastation of the ages past that this craft has been much overlooked.
From the ferocity of the conflicts our nations have fought against our own humanity, it seems quite easy to despair in these present times and assume that this peace is now completely forgot or to believe with finality that the vision of this peace is a mere illusion.
From the depth of the darkness the spirit of Was has plunged our world and its peoples into, it might seem only natural to weep with bitter tears at the pain of all these remembrances.
Indeed, it might seem to many a better choice to believe in the darkness itself and become evil-inspired than to reawaken to a memory of the truth in the midst of this longest night.
It might seem easy just to fall headlong into the void and perish in its oblivion.
Yet there are still stars in the sky! Two thirds of heaven calls to us. Because no matter how blind we have become to the Light, no matter how maddening the silence, God is and He is God!
For all that is truth are lineages that are related and all these lineages ascend to the Mountain of God. For the glory of the LORD is the realization of all our common human hopes!
As citizens, we can never truly rely on division, no matter how compelling they are presented to our heart.
This is the truth! The only thing that can defeat the spirit of our nationhood is War in the heart.
In this sense, only our willful rejection of the truth of the strength of our belongings together that God constantly offers to each our hearts will remove us from the reality of our nationhood and nothing else.
War in the heart prevents the sheltering wings of our nation to carry our generations forth from the poverty of exile to an Eden rebuilt. The vision of our national destiny must be strong and clear and great in each of us or else, our forgetfulness will cost us much and our complacency will avail us nothing.
If we can not make the ascent to the summit of the Mountain of God - as a nation and as nations together this time - if we can not persevere in our unity, we shall find the reality of our national communities degraded and weak and everyday living shall become for all of us, needlessly anxious and troublesome...
Now I must stop.
The rest of this meditation, my fellow Filipino compatriots, I shall now commend to your spirit.
Now, my brothers and sisters of the Promise, I have never tired reminding you of the necessity of prayer especially in these present times, I shall exhort you again to have recourse to prayer.
In the Abrahamic lineages, peace be unto each one, we all have our Seventh Day. Each of our great traditions serve the honor of a particular Sabbath of the LORD; Sunday for Christians, Saturday for Jews, and Friday for Muslims. If you know the power of prayer, I want us to be appreciative of each others' need of prayer.
Time exists for Man, Man exists for God.
I envision a time when all Filipinos are connected in our hearts in praying for the success of our Country. I want us to be able to understand with love and heart what it is we are praying for.
I want our generations to become fully established in the peace of our nationhood.
I want our Starlight to shine for ourselves and for our kindred nations together through the love that is alive in our hearts for our common humanity.
I want our Republic sky to be one and alive and full of hope. I want us to be a Country in spirit sustained by its connection to the timeless reality of the sacred, living an attitude of belonging to the unity of the Divine.
Remember, prayer that is precise is 50% of the battle of prayer and the other 50% takes care of itself. Try to be mindful of this when you pray. Just be aware of your love and in your love, you shall see much...
- selah -
Finally, as food for thy further reflection on this same topic, beloved brothers and sisters, I shall leave with you a passage from the Book of Isaiah -
This is what Isaiah, son of Amoz, saw concerning Judah and Jerusalem.
In days to come,
the mountain of the LORD’s house
shall be established as the highest mountain
and raised above the hills.
All nations shall stream toward it.
Many peoples shall come and say:
“Come, let us go up to the LORD’s mountain,
to the house of the God of Jacob,
That he may instruct us in his ways,
and we may walk in his paths.”
For from Zion shall go forth instruction,
and the word of the LORD from Jerusalem.
He shall judge between the nations,
and set terms for many peoples.
They shall beat their swords into plowshares
and their spears into pruning hooks;
One nation shall not raise the sword against another,
nor shall they train for war again.
(Isaiah 2: 1-4)
DAILY EXERCISE: Citizen, what are you without the LORD? Who are you without each other?