Handelinge 10:1-4 In Sesarea was daar 'n man met die naam Kornelius, 'n kaptein in die sogenaamde Italiaanse regiment. Hy was godsdienstig en godvresend, hy en sy hele huisgesin. Hy het baie gedoen om die armes onder die Joodse volk te help en het gereeld tot God gebid. Een middag teen drie-uur het hy in 'n gesig duidelik 'n engel van God na hom toe sien kom wat na hom roep: “Kornelius!” Kornelius het hom verskrik aangekyk en gevra: “Wat is dit, Meneer?” Die engel sê toe vir hom: “God het gelet op jou gebede en op wat jy vir die armes doen, en Hy het aan jou gedink
‘n Gedenkteken vir God
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It’s sad that nations have to raise up and maintain military forces to protect themselves, but they do. And the inevitable result of sending men and women into battle … is casualties; deaths and injuries, both physical and emotional.
Pretty much every country around the globe sets aside a day to remember those sacrifices. Today is Memorial Day in the US, where the people of America do precisely that.
A memorial is a monument or something else – like a day, today for Americans – for remembering sacrifices. It’s something we all focus on for a time, amidst the busyness of life … simply to remember. Which is what makes this passage of scripture so interesting:
Acts 10:1-4 In Caesarea there was a man named Cornelius, a centurion of the Italian Cohort, as it was called. He was a devout man who feared God with all his household; he gave alms generously to the people and prayed constantly to God. One afternoon at about three o’clock he had a vision in which he clearly saw an angel of God coming in and saying to him, “Cornelius.” He stared at him in terror and said, “What is it, Lord?” He answered, “Your prayers and your alms have ascended as a memorial before God.” (NRSV)
Cornelius was a godly man, a good man, whose sacrifices – his prayer and what he gave to the poor – had risen up as a memorial before God.
A memorial! Something that God noticed. Something that God remembered and focussed on, amidst all He had to do.
Sometimes, as we make sacrifices in serving God and others, it feels as though no one’s noticed, no one understands the cost and the pain. But nothing … nothing … could be further from the truth because …
Your prayers and your alms have ascended as a memorial before God.
That’s His Word. Fresh … for you … today.