Thursday, August 21, 2014

Uncertainty and Hope

EYE HAS NOT SEEN, NOR EAR HEARD, NOR HAVE ENTERED INTO THE HEART OF MAN THE THINGS WHICH GOD HAS PREPARED FOR THOSE WHO LOVE HIM.       

Just recently Kirby Anderson wrote in his daily "Point of View Commentary" that, "Most of us in modern society feel over scheduled and over committed."* Although it is nothing new I believe this has been the way people have felt for years in the modern digital and fast food era. It is also a major contributor towards the anxiety and worry that many feel an a daily basis. You would think that technology would allow things to get finished quicker and in return give us more time to relax but unfortunately that isn't true; it doesn't seem to be how the human mind operates. What ends up happening is we just fit more in to our schedules only to produce added anxiety. Can we handle this? Most can, yes, some just barely, others no way. But what happens to the mind when it gets overloaded? We simply shut-down. I recently experienced this with an executive I know. Over a four week period he requested the same information from an associate four times. In each instance his response was the same. Why? Overload.

Another part of our lives that adds anxiety has to do with events going on at home, things in the public arena, and on the national and international scene. Today's world is simply "out of control." Consider the following, the animal world is dying, (see Hos. 4:3). Almost daily there are catastrophes killing thousands of God's creatures around the globe, (see Animals Dying Everywhere). Wars of unimaginable atrocities are happening in Asia, Eastern Europe, the Middle East, and Africa that bombard us with the worst kind of barbarism known to mankind, vis. ISIS. Christians and other minorities are suffering cruel savagery at the hands of Islamic jihadists and many others. Tiny Israel, trying to exist peacefully, has and is enduring daily missile barrages from a people who want to see her eliminated from the face of the earth. The Ebola virus is infecting thousands in Africa and is now also being declared out-of-control. False religions with damnable teachingseven those that deny the Lord that bought them are on the rise. Race riots and senseless killings all over the states. We could add to these wildfires, droughts, sinkholes, earthquake swarms, tsunamis, and the red-moon tetrads as well as many other things. With all of this happening one may wonder how anyone could keep his/her sanity.

The fact is we can if we will simply trust Jesus with our lives and our families. You see, Jesus told us ahead of time that all of these things would occur in in a world where He is no longer trusted and believed in. He inspired prophets like Daniel to tell us that in the final days, "Knowledge would increase," thus our busyness becoming a by-product, (see Dan. 12:4). He inspired Paul to tell us that families would have a very hard time controlling their children, and that mankind would turn from God and in pride and boastfulness would seek riches and pleasure as idols to occupy their life, (see 2 Tim. 3:1-4). Isaiah was raised up to warn that the days ahead will see the earth "reel to and fro like a drunkard" as its very foundations are shaken, (Is. 24:20) Jesus Himself said the "love of many would grow cold," (see Mt. 24:12). Looking at these last days prophecies written 2000 to 2500 years ago is like looking at the morning news. What they tell us is that time is growing short and the soon return of Christ to call believers from this earth is near, (1 Thess. 4:13-18).

If the technology we work with on a daily basis is adding anxiety and busyness to our schedules requiring greater output what effects can all of these other things be expected to bring? As a Pastor what I have found in speaking to people from all ranks of society is that people are acutely aware of what is going on around them but are trying their hardest to put them upon a shelf in their mind; seeking to just forget about them while hoping for a better day; out of sight and out of mind is the approach. Humanity looks for it all to pass like a swift moving thunderstorm followed by bright sunshine, singing birds, and a ringing cell-phone. Simply put the busyness of our lives has crowded out the things that are most important; things like, spending time with our children, a date with our spouse, a friendly chat with friends, a walk in the park, and more importantly time with our God.

God promises that we do not need to let all of the things going on around us or even the trials we face bring us down. Jesus said reassuringly, "In this world you will have tribulation, but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world," (John 16:33). Through His substitutionary death (His dying for you) and His glorious death defying resurrection He validated all the things the Bible teaches to be true. Only Jesus has conquered death and even raised others from the dead showing the He is God.

The only real hope that we have in this worldthe only real hope of times of peace, security, and well-being are the days ahead that He promises to bring. He promises a day when the following will be the norm:


1.   There will be unheralded Peace as the “Curse” placed upon the earth is finally removed. With Christ on the throne and Satan bound peace will flow like a river. All creation will be at peace and the toxins that so many animals now possess will be removed, (Is. 11:6-9, 65:24-25).
Carnivorous animals will no longer exist

2.   There will be unprecedented joy, healing, strength, prosperity, holiness, fearlessness, singing, and abundance (Is. 35).

3.   No more will one wait for an answer to prayer. It will come immediately (Is. 30:19, 65:24).

4.   The earth will be repopulated and children will again delight our hearts, (Zech. 10:8; Jer. 3:1-14; Is. 60:22, 65:23).

5.   We will labor in joy and without oppression. Longevity will be restored as it was in the early days of earth (Is. 60:21, 22, 65:20-23).

6.   The earth will abundantly produce (Is.4:2; Ez. 47:9-12; Rev. 22:2).
 
7.   The nations will not learn war anymore, (Is. 2:4, Mic. 4:3)
 
8.   Every person will have a place to live in peace, (Mic. 4:4)

If the world seems to be spinning out of control it is because it is! We have entered the times the Bible says will characterize the world before the Lord returns. Once again, time is short. We need to pull our heads out of the sand and realize all the empty philosophies and useless rhetoric intellectuals throw at us in order to keep us aloof from the Lord are really lies. They have had their day, now its time to sweep them under a rug and realize the Bible's truths are what matters. What will it take for humanity to realize there is truth in the Bible? What will it take for us to wake up and truly smell the roses?

If busyness and turmoil are adding anxiety upon anxiety to your life; if you find yourself ignoring the world around you then you need to look unto Jesus the author and the finisher of the Christian faith. You need to humble bow your head before Him in prayer and say something along the lines of the following:

Dear heavenly Father, I realize you have told me that sin has caused the turmoil we see on the earth. I have been part of that because I have sinned against You, heaven, and others around me. I do believe that You came to bring us hope and that Jesus' death, burial, and resurrection are true. Please have mercy on me and forgive me of my sin. I accept your perfect life of innocence as given to me upon the cross of Jesus as the substitution for my sinful life. I now accept that Jesus is my Savior. I turn from all of my past sin and thoughts against you. Please come into my life and change me that I may worship you from now on and forever. Please give me Your peace. In Jesus Name, amen.

If you say that prayer in sincere faith the Lord will hear from heaven and you will know it. Surely the truth inspires. Also if you have said that prayer please email me at pastormike@springfieldfirstbaptist.org. Or if you prefer, michaelhenderson@truthinspires.com.

You will need to begin reading the scriptures; start with the Gospel of John. You will need to pray daily to let the Lord know about your needs and to ask for His guidance and wisdom. You should also seek out a Pastor and Church where you can be baptized. And lastly you need to find a fellowship of believers to commune with. As a New creation in Christ (2 Cor. 5:17) you are now part of the continuing family of the Lord.

God Bless

* http://www.ncfr.net/ncfr.net/subdomains/commentary/httpdocs/no-time-to-think/

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