FIRMLY PLANTED ◽ ENCOURAGEMENT
Suddenly, life as we’ve known it has changed. The change was so sudden and extreme that you know exactly what I’m talking about without me having to explain. It’s difficult to find words right now that convey the intensity of this moment. In God’s great eternal time-table, this moment, whether it lasts two months, two years, or two hundred years, may be a turning point for many of us, and, hopefully, for the world at large. I have hope—fearsome hope—that this is true for me, and for all those who seek the things above, and not below.
Suddenly, my world-view has expanded and the world has contracted, all at the same time. More than ever, it’s clear that the “the world” is shaky ground and the warning not to fix my eyes on it hits home. I can’t see or understand everything God is doing, but I recognize the signs of the times. I pray into it, agreeing with God’s unfolding unfathomable plan while, at the same time, asking for mercy for all those affected and for the groaning lost world. I pray for big-time mercy now, and courage for the future.
For several months, even before this suddenly came, I’ve had nagging thoughts about wasting time, about habits I’d slipped into, about giving in to distractions too often. I love God’s gentleness, but I also love his relentless fierce love that doesn’t let me get away with slack. Suddenly, he’s given me a perfect opportunity to, once again, realign myself.
Go deeper, Lord…help me not to be lulled by the comforts and pleasures of the day when things go back to normal. Let this be my new normal, acutely aware that “suddenly” can happen anytime.
This inner transformation is a constant work, but sometimes it’s the removal of a splinter, sometimes it’s major surgery, and it takes courage to face major surgery.
It is written that the Day would come. Many of us have longed for it and prayed for it. Is it true that a day is as a thousand years to God? It seems that way sometimes, and so it could be another thousand years. But what if it comes suddenly? I just don’t know. No one does, and so I need courage to face the “suddenlys” to come. In some ways, I want things to go back to “normal”, and some things will—I’ll eat at a restaurant, see my family and friends, shop for frivolous things—but with a new awareness; and, I won’t be content with just that because this first-time-ever major surgery that’s happening is changing me. If I’m reading right, there will be more to come. I’m taking courage and I pray you will too.
“I have spoken these things to you in order that you may have peace in Me.
You have affliction in the world, but take-courage— I have overcome the world”.