What is it that some folks are preoccupied with knowing the Mind of God? Are we so arrogant that we actually think that we can predict something that the Word of God states in Matthew 24:35, 36 “Heaven and earth shall pass away, but My words will by no means pass away. But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, but My Father only.”
Sure, any day, any hour holds the possibility that it could be the last for any one of us, no one is guaranteed a tomorrow. Stuff happens. Really bad stuff happens. But even these individual circumstances cannot be predicted.
There was a time that I would have welcomed “the end” with open arms; oh please DO, end this madness! But as I’ve matured, as I’ve twice survived deadly disease, have survived life threatening circumstances (four of them to be exact, there really should be a limit!), and have survived MYSELF in my younger years, I’m continuing to learn that there is a bigger picture. There are people who count on me. There are others that I’ve yet to meet, to share “my story” with.
One particular hike that I was on, I was off to the side of the trail, looking down at the stream below eager to catch a glimpse of a bear, deer or bobcat getting a drink. A young man was heading up the path and stopped beside me and started a relaxed conversation. I don’t even remember how the subject came up, but we discovered that he was recovering from cancer just as I was. The conversation blossomed as we continued our journey up the mountain and a friendship was forged.
As we shared our relative experiences while on trail, I told him how I had accidentally STOOD on a coiled, and exceedingly angry rattle snake. No one can outrun the strike of a snake, no matter how much adrenalin is pumping into the bloodstream. But I came out of the life-threatening situation “merely” shaken to the core. Some might say I was a bit rattled. Through the active grace of God I came out of the situation unscathed. This could have been the end of the world for me; literally the end of me.
I told him how I had residual fear. That night, I had to turn on all the lights in order to use the men’s room, I was terrified of stepping on the phantom snake in my house. I mean, seriously, where’s the bravery here? Weeks later, my fear did not recede and reduced my subsequent hikes to paths of sweaty shakes and terror. I went to my Lord, desperate to return to the wilderness with joy, wonder and discovery. He spoke to my spirit with very wise advise:
“Don’t focus on what you did, but on what I did.“
I can’t express what freedom that gave me! Clearly He intervened! Had He not, I’d be racking up 100’s of thousands of dollars in medical treatment for a snake bite. If I survived it, since I was initially bent over the thing, it could have struck me in the chest or face. (Full story in my book Wilderness Training the Novice).
After I told my new friend this, he said with awe, “Your God is very smart.” Smiling, I agreed with absolute confidence. Yes indeed. My God is very, very smart! I hope someday he will get to know “my God”. I also hope and pray the same for all who read this.
So, when you hear of rumors of “the end of the world” on a certain date, take courage and confidence that it is untrue, for no man knows the day or hour. Not even when a crazy accident may happen on or off trail!
Yes, I believe we are in the end times. Jesus told us in the Bible the signs of the “season”to watch for, to take note of the the increasing “labor pains”. We are in that season.
Sure, it seems like a really old and tired story, people have been saying this for over 2,000 years. Once anyone takes a good look at the world events, including what is happening in and to America, they will know that Jesus’ return is imminent. Preparing for His return and joyfully being watchful does not mean idleness, but a faithful discharge of one’s responsibilities. Each and every person has a godly purpose to fulfill. This also includes the eternal benefit to each of us of accepting His free-to-us gift of salvation. He desires that no one be lost. Once Jesus comes back for His people, there are no second chances as some books of fiction state. (Matthew 25:12) And since no one knows precisely when He returns, what foolishness it is to put off getting our souls in order now. The only “date setting” we should be doing is a salvation date with the Lord; today!
It’s a new day. Will we invest our lives in getting to know the Lord, or will we squander the opportunity and live for ourselves?
Dear Lord Jesus,
I am a sinner that needs forgiveness and I ask You to forgive me. I believe You are Savior and Lord Who Shed Your Blood and died for my sins to be forgiven, and rose from the dead; You live forever. I turn from (repent) my sins and invite You Jesus Christ of Nazareth to come into my heart and life as Savior and Lord. Please, help me to glorify You in all I say and do. I want to trust and follow You as my Lord and personal Savior. In the all powerful Name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth I pray. Amen.