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PEACE IN THE FRAY


Columnist Deborah Mathis wrote about the time when she was at Union Station in Washington D.C. on a particularly busy day. The first thing she remembers about that experience was the noisy hubbub of sounds. The public address announcer calling out arrivals and departures. Scores of pagers, walkie-talkies, and cell phones cried out for someone’s attention.

You could hear horns honking, machines clinking out change, and babies crying. A security guard yelled at a man who was about to enter a forbidden area. Three women stood up from their bench in order to argue with each other more loudly.

And a man in front of her was nervously pacing in a tight circle.


But then she heard someone singing:


"What a friend we have in Jesus,

All our sins and griefs to bear;

What a privilege to carry

Everything to God in prayer."


Slowly a change came over the noisy crowd. The voice continued:


"O what peace we often forfeit,

O what needless pain we bear,

All because we do not carry

Everything to God in prayer."


The quarreling women stopped their talking and quietly took their seats. People who’d been tense and hurried; seemed to slow and relax - and they strained to hear the voice singing the remaining verses that old hymn. And Ms. Mathis realized she was singing along. So were the three women who had been bickering. And few others as well.


The man in front of her, who had been behaving nervously quietly said: "Nice, huh? I don’t even believe in Jesus, but that’s nice."


(From an article by Rubel Shelly. From a sermon by Jeff Strite, "i-Serve" 1/11/2009 )

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