Some people have the life.
They have money enough to meet their needs and then some. They travel. They own businesses and property, stocks and investments. Their children don’t worry about money for college or down payments on homes. They have the best medical insurance and funds for retirement. They are educated, cultured, and connected.
Others scratch out their existence in the dirt.
Their homes are collapsible and subject to the weather. They don’t own shoes or a second pair of pants. They’ve never known hope beyond a cup of rice at mid-day and a sip of clean water when the relief trucks arrive. Their siblings died before their first birthdays and they don’t dream about what they will be when they grow up. They play stickball using real sticks and tuna cans thrown to them by soldiers from passing tanks. They are abandoned, desperate and powerless.
The rest of us live somewhere in between.
Some of us thinking that if we just stretch a bit, we can have the life of those at the top. Others of us fearing that if we don’t keep paddling, tomorrow we will join those who flounder at the bottom. Parts of our lives seem clearly to be a result of our own making, our own choices – good or bad, our destiny in our hands. Other parts seem random, thrust upon us by unseen forces, unmerited graces, undeserved punishments, a roll of the dice, a test from on high, products of decisions made by those around us we cannot control.
There’s nothing simple about our life on earth. Nothing.
But you think you don’t need God.
In fact, if He does exist, you’re pissed at Him for not coming through for you with that businessdealrelationshipfamilymember’sillnessredwagonwhenyouwerefivemarriagegonewrong. He can keep His rules and His eternal life to Himself, thank you. You’ll handle things from here. You’re completely baffled when the missionary tells you a story about the woman with no legs who lies by the door of her hut everyday telling anyone who will listen about Jesus. She is free and happy the missionary tells you and that makes you wonder but only for a minute because your cell phone’s ringing now and you’ve got to go.
Or you’re one of those at the top and you’ve done all right for yourself and if you got involved with God, well, since you don’t need anything from Him, chances are He’d just mess up the good you’ve got going for yourself. You give money every year to some of those charities and your family is nice. You’ve got it good and that’s because you’re smart and you’ve worked hard. It isn’t everything but you’re not living in a tsunami zone and you’re not an ax-murderer so you don’t see why God, if He exists, would be anything but happy with you plus, He’s got more important things to handle than your life. You’ve got it all under control.
Or You totally believe in the existence of God and you do your best to be nice and to do what Jesus would do and you don’t have it all figured out but how can anyone expect you to spend more than fifteen minutes a day studying the Bible and plus, you pray in the car on the way to work and back so that definitely counts. You’ve never had any Damascus road moments or seen a bright light or writing on the wall so you don’t think God’s got any big plans to use you and you’re fine warming the bench as long as you know you’re on the team so all those spiritual disciplines are important if you’re in the front line-up but you’re just an average Joe riding out the end of life, keeping your head down and you’ve never heard His voice and you wonder why other people have but you’re losing hope that you’ll ever have the answer, in fact, you can’t even remember the last time you asked a question.
It’s complicated, People. There are no easy answers for life on earth. So, if you think you don’t need God or that you need Him but only as a kind of religion or if you think you need Him but you can keep Him on a shelf and only dust Him off when it’s convenient then you’re sleepwalking your time on the planet.
Paul said it this way: “And do this, understanding the present time. The hour has come for you to wake up from your slumber, because our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed. The night is nearly over; the day is almost here. So let us put aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light.” Romans 13:11-12
So, just like in Matrix, you’ve got a choice. Swallow the red pill and learn the truth or swallow the blue pill and return to the world as you know it – trapped as a human power source providing energy for the evil circuit board of someone else’s cosmic game. The truth is hard to swallow, hard to face, hard to live out but it’s THE TRUTH.
Saturday night zombies will walk your neighborhood. Ask yourself - are you one of them?
Check out more of this post at Deeper with Jesus in Rhode Island at http://loristanleyroeleveld.blogspot.com/
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