Words from the Heart for Friday April 26th, 2019
Abijah and his troops inflicted heavy losses on them, so that there were five hundred thousand casualties among Israel’s able men. The Israelites were subdued on that occasion, and the people of Judah were victorious because they relied on the Lord, the God of their ancestors.
2 Chronicles 13:17-18 (NIV)
The notorious Donnellys emigrated from Ireland in the 1840s with the hope of finding success in what would later become Canada. James and Johannah became squatters who eventually settled on contested land near London, Ontario. Before long, conflict characterized the relationship with many of their neighbours, and the community as a whole. The feud escalated in 1857 when James Sr. killed Patrick Farrell, a man involved in a dispute over the land the Donnelly clan had illegally called home. While James Sr. spent time at the Kingston Penitentiary for the crime, his seven sons grew into manhood. They eventually earned a sullied reputation of their own. Accused of many crimes including arson and assault, the Donnelly name became synonymous with trouble.
One of the saddest times in the history of the people of Israel was the division that took place upon the death of King Solomon. The northern ten tribes broke away from the southern two tribes and two nations were formed – Israel in the north and Judah in the south. The family feud never healed and at the beginning it was particularly tragic. 2 Chronicles 13:17-18 speaks of a battle between the two nations: “Abijah and his troops inflicted heavy losses on them, so that there were five hundred thousand casualties among Israel’s able men. The Israelites were subdued on that occasion, and the people of Judah were victorious because they relied on the Lord, the God of their ancestors.” Military battles drove a wedge between these two groups. They were family – this was a civil war that would never be reconciled. How much better would it have been if Israel had relied on the Lord as Judah did. That is the beginning of reconciliation in any relationship – both sides relying on Christ.
These have been words from the heart.