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In Reference to: 18 May 2008 - Being in a Constant State of Mourning
From your sermon:
And for those of us who mourn the suffering of the whole of creation, it is even worse, and many of these mourners feel very much alone.
The suffering will only end when human hearts and souls are softened, and when true and unlimited empathy guides our way.
Dear Frank and Mary,
Thank you for the sermon of May 18. What you say is so very true. I often wonder how many, if any, people are joining me in praying for the non-human animals of the world or if I am one of only a handful of voices in the wilderness. If there were a concerted effort for like-minded Christians to pray for the exploited animals and their exploiters would this not be exceptionally powerful? Occasionally I have mentioned animals in a regular prayer group, and it appears that others find this a peculiar request. I sense some discomfort. Even to know that far-flung CVAers join me would be comforting. I sometimes feel as if I am the only one in the world praying about a problem - such as the duikers and bushmeat mentioned in paragraph 3 below.
I agree that empathy is a major missing quality in this world and that is what I pray for—an awakening of empathy and that it spread like wildfire, consuming callousness and hardened attitudes. Lack of empathy is the source of many human problems, too. Is empathy's opposite selfishness? Is it unconsciousness? Are those who deny, ignore, or perpetrate animal cruelty simply asleep?
When we hear of horrible cruelty to animals: in slaughterhouses, in factory farms, neglectful and cruel treatment by private owners, wanton bushmeat hunting of duikers & other wildlife in Africa (a special interest of mine), the pervasive cruelty to animals that Asian culture tolerates, for example. I also pray for those in leadership, such as Ingrid Newkirk, Wayne Pacelle, and Neal Barnard, legislators --that God guide their actions and thoughts.
Just a thought: Would it be fruitful to list briefly specific cruelties that CVA readers, wherever they are, could join together and pray about? Perhaps we would become more informed about issues that need prayer and learn ways and attitudes helpful to us in taking these issues to our Lord. We are told to pray repeatedly about what is on our hearts, not to give up. One can feel very heavy and discouraged as the list is long, and the cruelties appear to continue. But if a growing body of Christians joins together in offering these specific prayers.....what do you think? Maybe some of us would point out how God is working and what he is doing in answer to specific prayers. Thus we could encourage each other, as well. Might there be greater strength in numbers?
In His name,
Go on to: Comments by Frank and Mary Hoffman - 18 May 2008
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