A devotional by Reverend Dr. Kevin Schwamb
Those words were the title of a front page article in the Wall Street Journal yesterday on the city of Aleppo. A city devastated physically, economically, and emotionally by the Syrian regime. The pictures of the war torn city do not do justice to the daily battle its residents face as they try to go about the normal activities of life while facing insufficient supplies of food, medicine, and fuel. Their most recent challenge involves finding cemeteries to bury the dead as most of Aleppo’s graveyards are totally filled. As Christians, the plight of Aleppo should move us to pray for removal of the blockade which is preventing supplies from reaching those in need. We should also be praying for the Christian workers and ministries serving in that region as they labor to provide humanitarian aide and the good news of Christ.
The suffering and despair of Aleppo brings to mind another city whose condition is the exact opposite. We know that the recipients of the letter of Hebrews were struggling physically and spiritually, and some were on the edge of abandoning their faith in Christ. The writer of Hebrews responds by telling his hearers to look ahead to a future city that will be marked by peace, joy, and the presence of God. Hebrews 13:14 reminds Christians in any age that, “…we have no lasting city, but we seek the city that is to come.” The future city of God will be a place unlike any other. It will be marked by uninterrupted fellowship with God, continual rejoicing, and perpetual worship. It will be a city of great joy, grace, and no graves!