Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Axioms, Adages, and Proverbs (6): Let it Snow...?

"Live as if Christ died yesterday, rose today, and is coming back tomorrow." (Martin Luther)

1-11-11: what a date! And here I sit, waiting for the much anticipated snow event that is due to hit. I love the snow. If I had it my way, we'd get about 2' of snow right now. Whenever there is even the slightest chance of snow, I grow restless with anticipation, checking weather maps, radar images, forecasts, barometric pressure, and more. And so it is today; I've been watching the snow approach us for the past few hours and as I write this very moment, the snow is at our door.

I wonder; what would happen if I lived my life on earth with this same sense of anticipation for Christ's return? I mean He is coming back, right? And more than just a few inches of snow, when He comes back, He will be bringing me into His presence, forever. Wow! What could be better? A new heaven, a new earth, a new body that works all the time, a wedding feast in the presence of God Himself, a thousand year reign over a renewed earth? Amazing! Even as I write I start dreaming of heaven. And yet...

And yet I confess that most of my life on earth is lived out with no anticipation of this event at all. It's like the songwriter Keith Greene put it; "Asleep in the Light." C.S. Lewis put it this way;

"If you read history you will find that the Christians who did most for the present world were precisely those who thought most of the next. It is since Christians have largely ceased to think of the other world that they have become so ineffective in this."

What does he mean? Well let me go back to my snow analogy. If I told you that I had irrefutable evidence that beginning tomorrow morning around 9:00 AM, we would get a snow-storm and by the time it was done we would have about 3 feet of fresh snow on the ground, followed by at least a week of sub-zero temperatures, it would probably change how you lived your life today. You'd probably go to the store on the way home from work to make sure you were prepared. You'd probably make sure you had plenty of food, firewood, flashlights and the like. You'd probably dig out all your warm clothes. Bottom line: it would change how you lived your life.

And yet, Christ has told us that He is absolutely, positively coming back. But are any of us living any differently with that knowledge? Or is it just some distant, future event that has no real bearing on our lives today? In other words, are we, am I, so consumed with my life here on earth, that I've lost sight of the bigger picture?

If I knew that Christ was coming back sometime in my lifetime, it would definitely change how I lived today. And that, my friends, is the challenge. Whatever that "change" is, that's how Christ calls us to live today, right now, and everyday.

32 “But about that day or hour no one knows, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father. 33 Be on guard! Be alert! You do not know when that time will come. 34 It’s like a man going away: He leaves his house and puts his servants in charge, each with their assigned task, and tells the one at the door to keep watch. 35 “Therefore keep watch because you do not know when the owner of the house will come back—whether in the evening, or at midnight, or when the rooster crows, or at dawn. 36 If he comes suddenly, do not let him find you sleeping. 37 What I say to you, I say to everyone: ‘Watch!’”

The call is not an idle one, to sit back in an arm-chair and "watch." It's a call to action!

Live as if Christ died yesterday, rose today, and is coming back tomorrow. (Martin Luther)

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