(Joel 2, 12)
I do not know if it can be worse for us than it is now. That, worse, it seems to me that could only be finally destroyed. But God do not give us, to be witnesses of greater evil than this which has already happend to us. I also do not know, are there more peculiar or unhappier nation than ours. All the evil that could only dream in the gloomy dreams, come upon us. The impoverished country, in disarray. A nation divided and scattered by hostile nations, branched in all parts of the world. It seems, when it could be, everyone would have escaped somewhere. Moral is debased to the lowest branch. All kinds of sects have spread like leprosy on the Serbian’s land. Parties and movements grow like mushrooms after gloomy rain. Thousands and thousands of self-proclaimed prophets and saviours, and political leaders. And nation, like dazed, roams from one to another, gives love and commit his soul. Supreme Leaders of the world’s play with our national tribune like with unreasonable children, some embracing and rejecting others, changing the roles all the time. The left like the right. And after all, as I said random, I feel that I was powerless to express all the depth of our falling.
In all of these misfortunes we have been behaving dazed. We have been lying and deceiving ourselves, not having the strength to confront with the evil in which we have been found. We riveted ours eyes on all sides of the world, hoping that some great miracle is going to happen which will return all on its own place. We are fooling ourelves and our powerlessness with some kind of Zurla and wailing numbing. “St. George’s, St. George.” All our heroism overflows over pub tables. In the rowdy pubs, and wherever the plums branch strikes us, there we are the biggest and the best Serbs, the sad Orthodox.
And here, in these areas, where, it seems, that we will be as much as there where we originated, and here we are milling around our local fairs. We feast on while fast, guzzle bleak lamb, drink and celebrate as we resumed Dusan’s empire.
Hung over from the summer heat, spicy food and beer stream, we argue with each other and beat the dead horse. We listen to our local how acclaim and roar not to give even an inch of Serbian land. Like a few years ago before the fall and destruction of the western Serbian regions.
And now confused and frightened, I went to Scripture, the letter and the wisdom of the God, for the Council; to see, what in similar woes, before us, they did. And I tell you straight: different and smarter. And in the personal and national troubles, people have turned to the Lord God and asked for help from Him. They relied in the Lord and the Lord redeemed them. “If you are unfaithful, I will scatter you among the nations, but if you return to me and obey my commands, then even if your exiled people are at the farthest horizon, I will gather them from there and bring them to the place I have chosen as a dwelling for my Name.”(Nem. 1: 8-9) As we scatter wider and further than was scattered elected people, I believe, that only our Lord God could re-collect us on the fathers hearth. But where are repentances toward and turn to God!
When the Jewish people was in the torments that befallen us, it did not seek a foothold in at that time known world powers, it did not close alliances with the forces and dragons but, remorseful, addressed to the own Lord God.
In the time of Emperor Hezekiah, who did that what was right in the eyes of the Lord, (2nd King 18, 3) the largest ground forces in those days, NATO, Sennacherib king of Assyria hit the undisabled and impoverished kingdom of Judah, “attacked all the fortified cities of Judah and captured them”, (2nd King 18, 13) and impose heavy levies on all. Humiliated, Hezekiah shook and drained out of the country all that was worth; did not even spare the Temple of Jerusalem. Church’s door had to unpin and give to foe. And prayed Assyrian power to spare his people of further mugging.
But the envoy of Assyria, Rabshakeh, haughtily refused all offers of Judah. Insulting them and the Lord their God, he said to them in their language that they will “eat their own excrement and drink their own urine”. (2nd King 18, 27)
“When King Hezekiah heard this, he tore his clothes and put on sackcloth and went into the temple of the LORD. He sent Eliakim the palace administrator, Shebna the secretary and the leading priests, all wearing sackcloth, to the prophet Isaiah son of Amoz. They told him, “This is what Hezekiah says: This day is a day of distress and rebuke and disgrace, as when children come to the moment of birth and there is no strength to deliver them”. (2nd King 19: 1-3) They asked the prophet, a man of God, to pray “for the remnant that still survives”. (2nd King 19: 4) Indeed, the Lord had pity on them and rescued them.
Hezekiah of our days, in a situation that is more tragic, adds people to their rallies and meetings. Both here and there.
In the Book of Esther we find an exciting story about a woman whom the Lord was intended to save his people over her. By His providence, she endered to the Persian emperor Ahasuerus (Xerxes), and the emperor is often drow her up in his nearness. She found out that Aman, who emperor “elevate him and give him a seat of honor higher than that of all the other nobles” (Es. 3: 1) devised a vicious thought to completely exterminate the people of Esther. “Dispatches were sent by couriers to all the king’s provinces with the order to destroy, kill and annihilate all the Jews–young and old, women and children–on a single day, the thirteenth day of the twelfth month, the month of Adar, and to plunder their goods.” (Es. 3, 13) Esther, before he went to earthly emperor, turned first to the Heaven emperor for help. And he called his cousin, Mordecai the Jew, and said to him, “Go, gather together all the Jews who are in Susa, and fast for me. Do not eat or drink for three days, night or day. I and my attendants will fast as you do. When this is done, I will go to the king “. (Es 4, 16) And arranged with the emperor the books for quick messengers to all parts of the empire, that the king’s edict granted the Jews “in every city the right to assemble and protect themselves; to destroy, kill and annihilate the armed men of any nationality or province who might attack them and their women and children, and to plunder the property of their enemies”.(Es. 8, 11)
When between Nineveh the evil multiplied, like among us, today, the evil multiplied, and when their wickedness has come up before the Lord, (Jonah. 1, 2) the Lord come unto Jonah, to go to the Nineveh and to preach to them the collapse of the wrath of God. Jona, first, refused to obey the Lord, and for this reason was punished, and finally arrived among the Nineveh, and told them: “Additionally forty days, and Nineveh will perish. And Nineveh believed to the God, and the proclaimed post, and put on sackcloth, from the greatest to the smallest. Because when comes that word from the Nineveh’s empirer, he arose from his throne, and took off from himself his own clothes, and covered himself with sackcloth and sat in ashes. And through Nineveh proclaimed and said, on the orders of the Emperor’s and Knez’s: the people and livestock, cattle and sheep, not to taste anything not to graze nor drink water. But man and beast to cover with sackcloth, and to invoke God really, and to return every man from his evil way and from the violence that is in his hand. Who knows, to recover and to repent from the God and turn from the fierceness of his anger, there we shall not perish.
When God saw what they did and how they turned from their evil ways, he relented and did not bring on them the destruction he had threatened”(Jon. 3: 4-10)
There are plenty testimonies like these plenty in the Book of God.
Like it or not, those comparisons have been imposed to us. In our dizziness, and all the rambling around, it is hard to come back on the only true way. So instead of sinning and anger the God, it is better to us to fall on our knees and come to Him with all our heart, with fasting and weeping and mourning; (Joel. 2, 12) how he could take pity on us and turned his righteous wrath from us.
“What has happened to us is a result of our evil deeds and our great guilt, and yet, our God, you have punished us less than our sins deserved and have given us a remnant like this (Ezra, 9, 13), please, save us and redeem us, for Thy Name’s sake. The only You, O Lord, can help us.