We live in perilous times. The current situation in the Middle East is terribly disconcerting. Not only are there rockets being fired back and forth between Gaza and Israel, further north there is the incredible rise of a group hell bent on establishing a new nation carved out from existing nations that would be THE one and only true nation of Islam. What the outcome of these two events will be, no one knows. But, it does underscore the atmosphere of violence and how volatile that part of the world is.
Six years ago I remember events very similar to those happening now being in the daily news. Six years ago I was fully persuaded that the Lord was going to return any minute. As we all know, He did not return then and still has not come back. Many frustrated Christians ask God what are you waiting for? because in their finite thinking, God should just destroy this world and create the new heaven and earth right now.
God does not think like we do. God is not a man, does not reason as a man or do things the way man does them. He is God and He operates from His timetable and in accordance with His plans and will. The cry of righteous men and women for thousands of years has been how long, Lord; how long? The response from God is always the same; trust me .
There are plenty of times when we think things cannot get any worse and everything is going to fall apart before bedtime. There are plenty of times we pray that God would intercede and turn the tide of a personal situation, a local situation, a national situation or something happening in the world. Ultimately we must come to the point where our faith and trust is in God's Providence, Authority, Sovereignty and Wisdom and not in what we want or think should be done.
God knows what He is doing and our job is not to try and figure Him or tell Him what to do. Our job is to trust Him and trust what He is (or is not) doing. Our job is to push away the temptation to trust in the government, our jobs, our savings accounts or anything other than God and God alone. We have no nation of Christian to run or turn to. No President, Prime Minister, Chief of State or dictator can save us. We have but one Savior and He is Christ Jesus our Lord.
I was amazed this morning to see that someone in Israel (where 50% of the people were in bomb shelters yesterday) purchased a pretty purple child's backpack and lunch box from our on-line store last night. Even in the midst of potential war and death, people continue to go about their business because they trust in their government to protect them.
I realize this blog is all over the map, but there are many things on my mind this morning. First and foremost is the truth that no matter what does or does not happen in the days and weeks ahead, we must strive to place ALL of our trust in the Lord and not in ourselves, our material possessions or our government. The biggest battle that has raged for thousands of years is not in some barren countryside thousands of miles from our home, but in between our ears.
Each day we must wrestle with doubts, fears, pride and anger within our minds. Each day we must strive to remember and practice what is written in 2 Corinthians 10:3-5, which I leave you with today:
3For though we walk (live) in the flesh, we are not carrying on our warfare according to the flesh and using mere human weapons.
4For the weapons of our warfare are not physical [weapons of flesh and blood], but they are mighty before God for the overthrow and destruction of strongholds,
5[Inasmuch as we] refute arguments and theories and reasonings and every proud and lofty thing that sets itself up against the [true] knowledge of God; and we lead every thought and purpose away captive into the obedience of Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One),
2 Corinthians 10:3-5 (Amplified Bible)
It is strange perhaps but that pretty purple child's backpack and lunchbox speak out to me as a symbol of hope. With the world in turmoil around them, someone (probably a parent) is looking forward, anticipating that their child will strap on that backpack and with lunchbox in hand, head off to school. Rather than look at their present situation and say, "It will never happen." they are expressing trust that it will.
Our trust must be in the Lord... no matter what!