May We Not Simply Sing Louder

“I lived in Germany during the Nazi Holocaust. I considered myself a Christian. We heard stories of what was happening to Jews, but we tried to distance ourselves from it because what could we do to stop it. A railroad track ran behind our small church and each Sunday morning we could hear the whistle in the distance, and then the wheels coming over the tracks. We became disturbed when we heard the cries coming from the train as it passed by. We realized that it was carrying Jews like cattle in the cars. Week after week the whistle would blow. We dreaded to hear the sound of those wheels because we knew that we would hear the cries of the Jews in route to a death camp. Their screams tormented us. We knew the time the train was coming, and when we heard the whistle blow, we began singing hymns. By the time the train came past our church, we were singing at the top of our voices. If we heard the screams, we sang more loudly and soon we heard them no more.” And then the eyewitness shared with Pastor Lutzer, “ Although years have passed, I still hear the train whistle in my sleep. God forgive me, forgive all of us who called ourselves Christians and yet did nothing to intervene.”

I’m the last person to provide a “let’s become a voice in the nations for all the bad things we know are broken!!” rally cry, so this is not a post for such a rant. However, I do feel like this stirs my heart at a deep, deep level. There are many areas both in our own lives, and the lives of friends and family in which we simply try to drown out, ignore, and hope it simply goes away. Many of these are not situations in which we can simply intervene, but Ephesians 3:20 echoes that God “is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think.”

So all of my finite, broken, and insufficient words aside, may we re-read the excerpt above, and ask for the Holy Spirit to convict us as we need convicting. Ask God to expose us before Him in context of this excerpt, and pray for the power and obedience to act out on it for His glory and name-sake.


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