The image was disturbing. A decapitated Christ – repaired, but broken nonetheless. Who could have done such a thing?

But even more disturbing were the security fences around the church…obviously vandals needed to be deterred, but the spiked fences, electrified wires, and thorny shrubbery were there to keep out the very ones who desperately needed the one Who came to give His life for the world. The Lamb of God Who died as a propitiation for our sins. Heartbreaking.

Everyone in the Durban area lives behind high walls and have all manners of security features from electric wires, to rolls of barbed wire, to cameras…and they live in fear. A friend I met for the first time in 45 years told us horror stories of car highjackings – she herself was highjacked once – break-ins, murders, thefts, and other lawless deeds that were everyday occurrences. She was obviously nervous and did not wish to stand on the pavement to say goodbye for too long…

I have brooded over these images for days now. Were these images somehow images of our lives as believers? After all, we are the Temple of the living God and if our defences are so high – for whatever reason – that no one can get close enough to catch a glimpse of the crucified yet risen Saviour we represent, what purpose do we serve in the Kingdom? What are we hiding behind?

To be sure, vandals break hearts as well as statues, and we do need to protect our church buildings as much as we need to protect our bodies…but was His body not broken to bring the world in?