Week of August 12
Loved by a Trustworthy God
“You will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet.”
Nature is a pregnant creation, third-trimester heavy. When a tornado rips through a city in Kansas or an earthquake flattens a region in Pakistan, this is more than barometric changes or shifts of ancient fault lines. The universe is passing through the final hours before delivery. Painful contractions are in the forecast.
As are conflicts: “wars and rumors of wars.” One nation invading another. One superpower defying another. Borders will always need checkpoints. War correspondents will always have employment. The population of the world will never see peace this side of heaven.
Christians will suffer the most. “Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of me” (Matt. 24:9 NIV).
But remember: “All these [challenging times] are the beginning of birth pains” (Matt. 24:8 NIV), and birth pangs aren’t all bad. (Easy for me to say.) Birth pains signal the onset of the final push. The obstetrician assures the mom-to-be, “It’s going to hurt for a time, but it’s going to get better.” Jesus assures us of the same. Global conflicts indicate our date on the maternity calendar. We are in the final hours, just a few pushes from delivery, a few brief ticks of eternity’s clock from the great crowning of creation. A whole new world is coming! . . .
All things, big and small, flow out of the purpose of God and serve his good will. When the world appears out of control, it isn’t. When warmongers appear to be in charge, they aren’t. When ecological catastrophes dominate the day, don’t let them dominate you.
Let’s trust our heavenly Father.
Glorious God, all things flow out of your purposes. You are in control even when catastrophes dominate the day. When global conflicts increase, may we remember that these are birth pangs preparing the way for a whole new, wonderful world. May we lay aside all anxiety and fear and see these singular events as signs for rejoicing and anticipating your peaceful kingdom, amen.
Though a host encamp against me, my heart shall not fear; though war arise against me, yet I will be confident.
Psalm 27:3 RSV
From Lived Loved: Experiencing God’s Presence in Every Day Life
Copyright (Thomas Nelson, 2011) Max Lucado
Listen to UpWords with Max Lucado at OnePlace.com