You Have a choice
Job, in the Bible’s Book of Job, you may or may not recall, was successful, went broke but despite everything would not blame God. The story makes for strange and wonderful reading and might surprise you if you take time out to read it.
Life’s not easy and some still ponder ”Is life, with all its worries, worth living?” The sad, sad, toll of youth suicide shows those who don’t think so and give up early. It really depends on what we see as important in life – our values. The Christian looks at the life of Jesus and what he promised because Jesus Iived it too. He walked dusty roads; He became tired; He shared friendships; He saw sickness. He saw Lazarus die and wept for him and his sisters. He suffered but, before being crucified, still said to God, “…not my will but Yours”. And again, “In My Father’s house are many mansions. I go to prepare a place for you.” So, for the believer in Jesus, the message simply is, “Hang in there”.
Blind George Matheson (1842-1906) believed in Jesus despite his blindness and at the end of it was still able to say about his Lord in a now famous hymn,
O love that will not let me go
I rest my weary soul in Thee,
I give Thee back the life I owe
That in Thine ocean depths its flow
May richer fuller be.
He believed in the Bible’s promises and hung in to the end. A bit like Job, really.
Is this the kernel of the matter? Do we have to ask ourselves, “Do we really and truly believe in the promises of God in the Bible?” The promises of Jesus in the New Testament? Do they give a different perspective on or understanding of suffering and the ups and downs of life? Is that why so many people seemed to reach out to a seemingly caring Princess Diana and to Mother Teresa, who identified with the rejected and cared about them? Did they both, in some way, show Love being active in the world? Or has our “religion” become hereditary and a habit? Do we, in fact, fall in with the crowd and choose Pride and Power rather than humility and service to others?
But, you might remember, Jesus rejected Pride and Power at the beginning of His ministry and asserted that the darkness of a seemingly futile born-live-die cycle for …nothing… was not the case. His promise was simple – “Believe in Me and you shall not die but have everlasting Life.” He showed the way by caring for others during His life. So caring for one another is the hallmark of following Him. Loving others is the way to show you have Love in you – the real purpose of Life. God can use those who have love in them but His Love cannot flow through those who don’t.
Jesus, the Son of Love itself – God, came back from the dead at Easter.
St Peter saw Him. Mary saw Him. 500 others saw Him as well as others. They said, “It was no myth; we saw Him.”
So there’s a choice – a Life of Hope through belief in Jesus and following Him or — a seemingly purposeless life which inevitably ends in Death – for what purpose? What’s your choice? If you wish to, talk to your minister/priest about the above or get in touch with Rev. Paul Seiler at St Paul’s. (SM)