The beginning of spiritual history | Sunday Observer

The beginning of spiritual history

3 January, 2021

Water which chills flows through the hills

And nature is still

In the beautiful world that God gave us.

God could have waited without creating the world. He did not do so because he loved us all. He forgave our first parents for disobeying and sent them to lead generation to generation of mankind., from Genesis to Revelation.

We have to go back two thousand and two hundred years to feel the goodness of God’s presence that have been replaced by hatred and jealousy today. Love, simplicity, spirituality that was among them, are no more while their leaders struggle for power and supremacy.

‘What for?’ Bishop Valence asked the nation online.

“Our world has changed dramatically with the invention of the computer. It has revolutionised how we work and act. Technology is in our cars, toys, appliances, aircraft, home security system and phones. For the computer to function, they need detailed instruction. I think the Bible acts like a computer program in our minds and hearts, enabling us to work and live faithfully.” As he said this, we saw a smile on his face. He knows to drive a point home.

The birth of the Messiah

‘Today the world remembers the day Jesus was born and the significance behind it when Joseph takes Mary to register their names, fulfilling a prophesy, foretold in the Old Testament when the Roman Emperor, Caesar Augustus, decreed that all must return to the city of his birth to be registered, and Joseph travelled to his birthplace, Bethlehem.

A large number of people were in Bethlehem to register. Joseph and Mary had nowhere to stay and the only place left was a stable occupied by donkeys, sheep, and other animals. It was here, in this lowly stable that baby Jesus was born.

Perhaps, it was God’s direction that Caesar Augustus made the registration law. This made it possible for Jesus to be born in Bethlehem, the city of Scriptures, where it was foretold that the Prince of Peace would be born.

Jesus as the Shepherd

The Lord is my shepherd

I have everything I need.

He lets me rest in pastures of green grass

and leads me to quiet pools of water.

He gives me new strength

He guides me in the right path as he has promised

Even if I go through the deepest darkness

I will not be afraid, Lord, for you are with me

Yours shepherd’ rod and staff protect me. – (Psalm 26)

Bishop Valence thus gently delivers his sermon to the nation ‘Every lamb is his care’. If one is lost, he will leave behind his flock, go search for the missing one until he finds it. Once found, he will hold him closer to his heart and feel the lamb whether he is hurt, hungry or thirty.

Here, the lost lamb is one of his lost children, very appropriately. That is Jesus the shepherd, redeeming the fallen, the meek and the discarded. Those who are frail and sick and those who have strayed, messed up their lives, especially the young who may have been misled. He stretched his hands to lift them up no matter when or where.

Whenever we are trapped in a hopeless situation, prayers can bring help first by calming us so that we can think and see clearly. Instead of giving in to panic, we can ask Jesus for the insights we need to deal with the situation.

See what love Jesus has given us that we should be called children of God and that is what we are.

The shepherd himself goes before us and will be with us; he will never leave nor forsake us. We shall not be afraid and we shall not be discouraged.

The dark days of our Nation

‘We are not without our share of problems that other countries are faced with but less in proportion until the horrendous attack on our churches on April 21, 2019, that not only shocked our nation but all nations around the world as never before. The spilling of innocent blood, bodies blown to bits, dismembered, flesh torn apart as bodies lay scattered around the church. The faithful followers of God who came on this fateful day to pray and give thanks to God was no more in just the split of a second, every fibre in their bodies in ashes. The nightmare continues with no one blamed.

Why was it done?

What was the motive behind it?

Who was behind it?

Politics, religion, racial or otherwise?

We need the answer now.

‘Did Jesus die for sinners such as these?

One diabolical act that shook the very firmament of the world, the pillars of the skies. They fell down and crashed’ Bishop Valence asked emotionally, with visible tears in his eyes shining as Christmas lights fell on his face.

‘Secondly’ he said ‘Puttalam in my Diocese became the dumping ground to loads of dirt and refuse transported from Colombo, with an unbearable stench. The whole environment was polluted, children fainted unable to breathe as they inhaled the poisonous gas that covered miles around the dumped grounds. The danger and anxiety that gripped the villagers were finally resolved but the scars are left behind’ he added.