Tuesday is not normally my day to update the blog, but I wanted to urge all of us to pray fervently for the four members of the Christian Peacemaking Team who are being held by the "Swords of Truth Brigade" in Iraq. The captors have vowed to execute the men on Thursday unless all prisoners in Iraq and coalition custody are released.
One of the four men, Tom Fox, is a friend of a member of our congregation. There are prayer vigils being planned in this area. But may we also commit to pray, as an online community?
The irony is that it was a Christian Peacemaker Team that helped bring to light the abuse of prisoners at Abu Ghraib and elsewhere. And while we pray for peace, and for these four men and for their captors, a member of Tom's church reminds us that there are literally thousands of people who have been kidnapped in Iraq, and many more who wait and worry about their missing loved ones--they just don't make the news.
Even as I plead with God for a miracle, I give thanks for the witness of these men. "It seems easier somehow to confront anger within my heart than it is to confront fear," Tom Fox wrote on his blog in October 2004, during the spate of kidnappings of aid workers. "But if Jesus and Gandhi are right then I am not to give in to either. I am to stand firm against the kidnapper as I am to stand firm against the soldier. Does that mean I walk into a raging battle to confront the soldiers? Does that mean I walk the streets of Baghdad with a sign saying 'American for the Taking'? No to both counts. But if Jesus and Gandhi are right, then I am asked to risk my life and if I lose it to be as forgiving as they were when murdered by the forces of Satan. I struggle to stand firm but I'm willing to keep working at it."
The name of Fox's blog, incidentally, is Waiting in the Light.
Come, Lord Jesus.