The Saints of God

imagesSo what does it mean when we talk about the saints of God on this all Saints” Day.   Below is a Poem Entitled “All Saints’ Day written by Ada Cambridge in 1867.

(1867) – Poem by Ada Cambridge

Blessed are they whose baby-souls are bright,
Whose brows are sealèd with the cross of light,
Whom God Himself has deign’d to robe in white—
Blessed are they!
infant-baptismBlessed are they who follow through the wild
His sacred footprints, as a little child;
Who strive to keep their garments undefiled—
Blessed are they!

Blessed are they who commune with the Christ,
Midst holy angels, at the Eucharist—
Who aye seek sunlight through the rain and mist—
Blessed are they!

Blessed are they—the strong in faith and grace—
Who humbly fill their own appointed place;
They who with steadfast patience run the race—
Blessed are they!

Blessed are they who suffer and endure—
They who through thorns and briars walk safe and sure;
Gold in the fire made beautiful and pure!—
Blessed are they!

Blessed are they on whom the angels wait,
To keep them facing the celestial gate,
To help them keep their vows inviolate—
Blessed are they!

Blessed are they to whom, at dead of night,—
In work, in prayer—though veiled from mortal sight,
The great King’s messengers bring love and light—
Blessed are they!

Blessed are they whose labours only cease
When God decrees the quiet, sweet release;
Who lie down calmly in the sleep of peace—
Blessed are they!

Whose dust is angel-guarded, where the flowers
And soft moss cover it, in this earth of ours;
Whose souls are roaming in celestial bowers—
Blessed are they!

Blessed are they—our precious ones—who trod
A pathway for us o’er the rock-strewn sod.
How are they number’d with the saints of God!
Blessed are they!

Blessed are they, elected to sit down
With Christ, in that day of supreme renown,
When His own Bride shall wear her bridal crown—
Blessed are they! 

all-saints-day-2Being a saint of God is not about honor, power, deed, or glory, but it is actually about an abiding relationship with the One who loved us first.  The word “saint” comes from the Greek word hagios, which means “consecrated to God, holy, sacred, pious.”   Such a description applies to all who are trying to walk as beloved children of the Most High God.

Therefore, scripturally speaking, the “saints” are the body of Christ, Christians, the church. All Christians are considered saints. All Christian are saints—and at the same time are called to be saints.  First Corinthians 1:2 states it clearly: “To the church of God in Corinth, to those sanctified in Christ Jesus and called to be holy…” The words “sanctified” and “holy” come from the same Greek root as the word that is commonly translated “saints.” Christians are saints by virtue of their relationship with Jesus Christ. Christians are called to be saints, to increasingly allow their daily life to more closely match their position in Christ.

We are made saints by God’s doing, but we live out that identity by our choice.  Once again that intertwining of our lives and will with God’s love and purpose.  Interestingly, it is also the intertwining of our lives with the other saints.  Biblically the word saint always is in a plural setting reminding us that we are truly one in Christ.

As the great hymn ‘I Sing a Song of the Saints of God” states:

logo colour cream bgThey lived not only in ages past; 
there are hundreds of thousands still. 
The world is bright with the joyous saints 
who love to do Jesus’ will. 
You can meet them in school, on the street, in the store, 
in church, by the sea, in the house next door; 
they are saints of God, whether rich or poor, 
and I mean to be one too. 

May we too have the courage to step into our identity as saints of God.

Amenimages-1