"You have to work hard to offend Christians. By nature, Christians are the most forgiving, understanding, and thoughtful group of people I've ever dealt with. They never assume the worst. They appreciate the importance of having different perspectives. They're slow to anger, quick to forgive, and almost never make rash judgments or act in anything less than a spirit of total love . . . No, wait--I'm thinking of Labrador retrievers!" David Learn, 1998

Sunday, April 3, 2011

LIGHT for a darkening world


      A friend wrote us recently: "The battle is so widespread. Attacks against the saints at all places. Young people feel so hopeless. I am reading Letters to Malcolm for our C.S. Lewis book group and am fairly confused about the whole purpose of prayer from CSL's perspective. I awoke this morning with the firm knowledge that I don't know what to do. I can storm heaven's door, but it seems so locked. I feel like I am slumped against the door, waiting for the Master to come out, in His time.
     "How about you?"
    My response: Hmm, actually I feel awed by the recognition that what Jesus predicted 2,000 years ago (and the Bible for 2,000 years before that) is actually, literally coming true in our generation, before our very eyes! History is narrowing down to wars and rumors of wars, more and greater famines and earthquakes in various places (the "birth pangs" of the death of the world); the Arab-Israeli conflict, worldwide rejection of Israel;persecution of Jews and Christians; one world government, one world economy, both to be ultimately ruled by one world despot (I believe Obama is actively seeking the position but he may be a bit early)--Jesus said it would be like this and He said when we recognize these things starting to happen to look up because He's coming!
     To me, it's scary but exhilarating, like being poised at the top of the highest diving board ready to perform in the Olympics. King Jesus is sovereign over every detail,each fitting into its place to bring about the "fullness of time" (as when Jesus was born) for His glory. Not that we want these bad things to happen (not our choice) but they will happen, are happening and they are signs that everything else he promised,all the good stuff about redemption and heaven and joy are true, too. I believe we are to be actively, practically, helping those affected by the disasters and pain and confusion and hopelessness--sacrificially with our time and money, hugs and prayers--while at the same time rejoicing privately, "Even so, come Lord Jesus!"
     You might want to read a couple of things from my blogs His Scribe and BONUS FEATURES for your encouragement (seriously):
http://hisscribbler.blogspot.com/2011/03/prophecy-time-of-shaking-for-your.html (this is a prophecy, not Scripture, so it has to be tested against Scripture)
     I did a series of 5 posts on Preparing for Persecution at http://hisscribedownloads.blogspot.com/search?updated-min=2008-01-01T00%3A00%3A00-08%3A00&updated-max=2009-01-01T00%3A00%3A00-08%3A00&max-results=7 The last one, Joy in Persecution, is on top. You can scroll down to start with the first one. (To entice you to read them--I mention CSL!)
     How to pray? I pray for unity among believers--in John chapter 17 we overhear an amazing prayer from Jesus to his Father, pouring out his heart for us. That is what he wants and is doing now, drawing us together to support and provide for one another as he has done in China and other places where the church has had to go underground.
     I pray for those going through this without knowing God, that God will speak peace to their fear and truth to their lies, directly and indirectly (through us), that there will be a mighty harvest of people who have been shaken so that all is left is what cannot be shaken, people stripped of false gods and nonessentials--I imagine the Japanese people are now going over the heads of their gods of wood and stone, and their ancestors' spirits, crying out to the God who lives, loves, hears and responds. Religion is probably no longer ritual and going-through-the-motions for them now!
     I can pray these prayers with confidence because they are God's expressed will; I am only coming into alignment with what he has already told us he wants. Relief (for a control freak like me) comes from knowing all this is so huge, ghastly, and overwhelming, we are not sufficient for these things.

--HEROES: Fukushima 50 interviews and living conditions
--THE JAPAN SYNDROME: Shame on you, Cal Thomas!

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