On the power of words - Pt 2
In Part one of this two-part series, we introduced the power of the word, according to the findings of international speaker the Reverend
Dr Michael Friday. This week, we share how one's life and even a nation can be transformed by words.
"Our words should introduce goodness in a nation of badness. According to Mark, it seems that John's bogus imprisonment and eventual execution catapulted Jesus into action. When Jesus hears the bad news that a leader - Herod - long since gone rogue, was now upping the ante and troubling all Judea with badness, Jesus steps in with a word," said Friday during his sermon at the Ridgemount United Church recently.
He questioned how Jamaica could have the word, with 12,000 churches, and yet the Transparency International 2016 corruption ranking is 83 of 176.
"When it's each man for himself, everybody loses. That was Herod's way: self-indulgent, greedy, immoral, corrupt, sexually wayward, murderous, dishonest, deceitful, and a worship pretender so 'bandooloo' that even Jesus called him a fox. Why does this spirit of Herod grip Jamaica so? Why is Jamaica full of words of goodness, yet the nation is still full of badness?"
He continued: "My friends, just as Jesus intercepted the bad news of Herod with the good news of God, I urge you - mobilise God's good news, implanted in you. The best words always lead to action. It's no use singing about the spirit, talking about Jesus, praying, fasting, and bawling out until everyone is slain on the floor, if we're not going to activate the goodness in our words."
Friday added that our words should impart guidance in a nation of blindness.
"Sometimes we don't see good things that are near, or bad consequences that are far. The kingdom that Jesus came preaching couldn't be seen by many, even though it was near! Some couldn't see the distant consequences of their actions, but they were surely coming."
He added, "Jamaica needs to hear the message to repent more frequently from those who know that Jamaica's real problem isn't lack of prayer; it's lack of action - lack of staring powerful leaders in the face like John did and saying, 'repent'!"
Finally, the man of the cloth preached that our words should initiate greatness in a nation of blandness.
"There are thousands of Jamaicans enduring bland lives. Like the men Jesus called, they're fishing but catching nothing. With two words - 'follow me' - Jesus led them to greatness. But the greatness was only initiated with words; it was made complete with action."
He ended with a word of encouragement to those who wish to see a dawn of change.
"My friends, if you have ever read any words in any Jamaican library or any Jamaican place of worship, or any Jamaican Bible, you must never stop until all of Jamaica is teeming with leaders and people who traffic in the good, the whole good, and nothing but the good, so help you God."