Sunday, May 22, 2011

Final Hour

“But of the day and hour no one knows, neither the angels of heaven, nor the Son, but the Father alone…therefore, stay awake! For you do not know on which day your Lord will come…so too, you also must be prepared, for at an hour you do not expect, the Son of Man will come.” Matthew 24: 36, 42a, 44

The world didn’t end. The Lord didn’t come back. People weren’t raptured. But lots of people spent their life savings, quit their jobs, left their spouses and joined the fray of doomsday “prophets”. More sadly, many people lived in fear or ignorance and now face a life of uncertainty or ridicule.

In case you hadn’t heard, the world was supposed to end—or start to end. Again. Why do people keep trying to pick a date? Why do people rally around them? Seventh Day Adventists, Y2K, the Mayans, Harold Camping…the list goes on and on. On one level people are looking for hope and for something bigger and better than their lives or this world. And they’ve got a point. There’s a lot of violence and sickness. A lot of natural disasters and selfishness. Sometimes we might all be tempted to just wish it would all go away (or we could all go away) and we’d be in a better place. But at the same time God created the world good and no matter how bad sin and the consequences of sin can make things, we always have to remember that God created it—and us—good.

People are also looking for something to belong to, something to believe in, something to hold onto. Our culture is quick and slick and fast-paced and all of us can get lost in the shuffle from time to time. We all want to know that there is something that we can be part of that will give us purpose and direction.

We are also tempted with wanting to control things. We have trust issues. It’d be nice to change our spouse, our kids or our parents. It’d be nice to cheat death as many times as we wanted. It’d be nice to be “in the know” about things that are uncertain. And so we try to see into the future, bring back the dead or figure out when Christ will return or the world will end.

But it all really comes down to trusting in Jesus and then finding the extraordinary in the ordinary situations of our daily lives. Could the real end of the world happen in six months or a year? Sure. But if you died tomorrow, then tomorrow is the real end of YOUR world. I wonder how many people who have predicted and then spent their lives preparing for the end of the world died before the “date”? I bet that was anti-climactic. The point is that we need to live each day for today, knowing that any day could be our last. Not because some guy predicted it to be so, but because we want to be ready at every time and at every occasion to meet our Savior face-to-face, so that when we see Him, He can welcome us home as good and faithful servants.

Dear Jesus, I place my life into Your hands. I relinquish all control. I will live each day for as many days as You allow and I will welcome death when it comes. Please grant me the grace to trust You in my living and in my dying. Amen.

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