Devotional for Saturday and Sunday July 25-26

Good Morning Everyone,
 
Our theme for this month: “Fresh wind, fresh fire”
 
Our Bible verse for today: “No one has greater love than this: to lay down his life for his friends.” John 15:13
 
Our thought for today: “Police lives matter”
 
There is probably no group of professionals who are more stressed and maligned during these difficult days in which we live than are law enforcement professionals. (Healthcare professionals are stressed also, but for different reasons). Many of our law enforcement professionals need some fresh wind in their sails. In other words, they need to be encouraged; they need to know they are appreciated; and they need our support.
 
This morning’s devotional is an adaptation of a short essay I wrote last year entitled “Blue Lives Matter”, and which appeared in my last book “Your Life Matters”. Currently in our society the slogan we see and hear everywhere is, “Black Lives Matter”. That is certainly a true statement. Black lives do matter. Unfortunately, sometimes the slogan “Black Lives Matters” is met with the response “All Lives Matter”. Again, a 100% true statement. But one that is often not well received.
 
I understand why responding with “All Lives Matters” could be problematic. If I were to say to you, “Breast cancer is an awful disease and we need to find a cure for it”, and you responded, “All cancer is awful and we need to find a cure for all of it”, you would be making a true statement, but it would be an inappropriate response to what I said. All cancer is bad, but this particular conversation is about breast cancer, and perhaps the reason I said it is because someone I love has it.
 
Likewise, if I were to say to you, “The wildfire in the Smoky Mountains is a terrible tragedy”, and you responded “Most wildfires are a terrible tragedy”, again that would be a true statement, but it wouldn’t be a very kind or compassionate response to what I said. It’s true that most wildfires are tragic, but this conversation is about the wildfire in the Smoky Mountains which destroyed the home of a friend of mine. So, saying “Black Lives Matter” doesn’t mean that other lives don’t matter, it only means that this particular conversation is about black lives.
 
But that logic works both ways. For instance, the title of my book “Your Life Matters” in no way takes away from or diminishes the truth that black lives matter. It simply means that in this particular instance the life that matters and which is being referred to, is that of the reader of my book. Likewise, the title of this devotional “Police Lives Matter”, in no way takes away from the truth that black lives matter. It only means that this particular conversation is about police lives. Black lives matter; police lives matter; all lives matter; and we can have individual conversations about each of them in turn.
 
If you are a law enforcement professional, I want you to know that the overwhelming majority of the American people support you. We appreciate what you do for us – and we most certainly do not want police departments defunded. If anything, you deserve a big fat raise, a longer vacation, better equipment, and all the advanced training you need in order to be able to continue doing the job we all depend on you to do.  
 
For all my readers, I encourage you to go out of your way to thank and encourage a law enforcement professional. If you see them in a restaurant, consider paying for their meal; or just offer them a word of thanks and tell them you’re praying for their safety; or send a “thank you” card to the police station; or in some other way express your support and appreciation.  
 
Police lives matter. They matter very much. We love you and we appreciate you. Thank you for all you do.
 
God Bless,
Pastor Jim
Copyright © 2020 Oak Hill Baptist Church, All rights reserved.

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