Monday, July 25, 2011

From Germany With Love: An Amazed by God post

My ties to Germany are many.

And yet, I have not one drop of German blood as far as I know.

The connections began in 1517 when a devout German catholic priest, while studying his Bible, came across that pivotal passage in Romans "The just shall live by faith." At the time, the Roman Catholic church held an unprecedented sway over the hearts, minds and pocketbooks of all Europe (where my ancestors came from). Although many, like Luther were devout and honest seekers, some sought power and privilege within the rigid, erroneous walls of religious domination that had grown up around the original Christian faith. Luther and others of his ilk risked and often gave their lives for the truth they so fervently believed, ie, that the miracle of redemption and the privilege of  eternity in heaven happens exclusively by grace through through faith, and not by a lockstep subservience to the church's man-made laws, or even to God's laws.

If all had continued as it had been before Martin Luther, I most likely would never have been brought into saving grace. Nor would any of my family.

Luther most likely spoke no English, but the action he took to challenge the established church began the Great Reformation which spread the good news of salvation by grace alone throughout the known world. His translation of the scriptures into German encouraged the first ever translation in English. There can be no question that the founders of United States, and all subsequent citizens are recipients of this same blessing.*

As I fast forward to 2009, I am once again blessed by Germany. On what was probably a whim, our family decided to host a foreign exchange student. As I looked through the profile options my eyes lit upon a face. Her name was Ellen. This is the one I want, I said. I really couldn't tell you why. She just looked right.

For three years now, in several visits,  we have been graced by the presence of a lovely, intelligent, generous and highly admirable young lady of German descent. Her English is impeccable, while we have barely begun to try German. She has become part of the family, and we have forged a lifetime friendship.

As I begin to scratch the surface of my German learning, I realize just how much conversational German my father brought into our house as a result of his time overseas during the second world war. I am astounded that my connection with Germany was preordained.

Given the spiritual climate of present-day Germany I think she would agree that we have been a blessing to her as well. The original globalist is God Himself. He never let a little thing like distance stop Him from doing his work.

* A streak of antisemitism in Martin Luther is proof of his humanity, hence his need, like ours for God's grace.

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