Where is home? Reflecting Just a Little on the Devastation of War

Yesterday a dear friend of mine and I were talking about the wars in Africa particularly. God reminded me of the battlegrounds He had allowed me to see before drawing me perpetually on my knees before Him. The devastation of war. The devastation of conflict, where at some point of the day, you need to go home, but cannot, because home is no longer where it used to be. Your neighbors are not there, your extended family are either dead or scattered, you can’t go sit and look at your photos, read your book, listen to music, watch television, talk to your family or neighbors, you can’t find your identification and educational papers for the battle came home while you were probably out, and took your history away from you.

In another lifetime, I had the precious but short experience of working among refugees and IDPs. I had the privilege of retreating to my safe room in the evenings, and the ability to fly and be with my children, my parents, my siblings, my fellowship – WHENEVER I NEEDED TO. But they had made a home where they would not choose to be, where the illusion of safety was sometimes daily tested when thuggery visited on them and their loved ones. They were once perhaps, like you and I. Who could take their daily routines for granted [ahem…thank God for your boring and monotonous life], who had the illusion of control over their lives, their futures. When they sinned, they did not sin any differently from how you and I sin, and their ancestral and current issues were not so different from yours and mine. One day someone made a decision to take a quarrel to the next level, and perhaps…maybe…that person, or those persons are no longer alive to witness the devastation of those who daily must pay the price of their decisions. Sometimes they are, but the war has become for them a route to personal definition [lets be honest brothers and sisters] or the elevation of those who bear the same pride or greed – and are in many ways ‘like them’. They are not concerned about the refugee’s tears for today, the little boy or girl who perhaps has to expose certain undeveloped parts of their anatomy to another little girl or boy who bears guns and grenades, just so s/he can live to see another day. And we are all little girls and boys in some ways…and at the end of the day, the perception of a home to return to, remain an increasingly illusive dream.

Home…the memory for some, is of the butchered, sometimes charred bodies of those. Like you and I, they lived as though the devil were out of business already…and we are in heaven already, eternally safe. Until war proved them wrong. Modern technology has ensured that we get those images almost as fast as light. I don’t know, if like me, you get to dwell on what it must have been like for those bodies in the last minutes, hours, seconds before they looked like the images we saw. How it was like for the one who watched hidden, or the one headed home…who arrived to find his home and life as s/he knew it changed in a way no human should never experience change?

There are no words to share what is on my mind, more importantly, what is or was in theirs. But human blood stains land…and brings a rot that only the Power of Heaven through the Blood of Jesus Christ can truly clean up. The effect is bondage which keeps us winding round and round the same mountain for a wasted lifetime. It does not have to be that way. If you and I have the courage to do different, to follow God’s Solution, to believe that there is an ultimate God-solution…and set our focused life on that way. If God needs a man or woman to stand in the gap, and be the conduit through which His Might courses into your land, calling sometimes for a dying of your life as you knew it, and a resurrection of The True Life through your body, would you do this? Even if the country you are praying and paying for is not the one you live in? Would you lay down your life, even in daily prayer, so another life, another nation, would have the privileges you do?

For some of us, God is probably calling on us to be the channel through which He prevents another nation from taking the route of devastation: would you keep at it even if it meant you loosing the applause you now enjoy in your career, ministry, and life generally? It is worth it…you and I…are worth it, if God says so.

Today, this week, this month, whenever God brings the images of war your way – or the revelation of a pending war, will you pray? If He enables you to do something, will you be brave enough to do it? I am praying for you, for us…




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