Thursday, November 15, 2012

Life is Short

“For all flesh is as grass, and all the glory of man as the flower of grass. The grass withers and the flower thereof falls away.” 1 Peter 1:24       -Pastor Bill

Life is long. Life is short. 
It depends on your place in life. It depends on your circumstances. There are those that are fighting for their lives, battling cancer or some debilitation. There are others contemplating suicide, murder, and escape because of circumstances that seem too unbearable to live in, diseases, addictions, bad marriages, broken hearts etc. Probably more suicides take place from emotional problems than any other. Cases in point: a grandmother kills herself and her three grandchildren using carbon monoxide poisoning after her daughter wanted to restore custody from her mother after the daughter had been abusing her kids. Another, a mother stabs her children to death in revenge for her husband neglecting her. These are just two in the last week.
Reports continue grow of custody battles, abductions of children by estranged parents, murders of estranged wives, lovers, and then the murder of the children involved. The settling of affairs or the getting even is accomplished by death to all, even the innocent.
This is purely symptomatic of a society with no values. There is nothing to hold onto in times of extreme difficulty. Irrationality is common. The guidance of self in times of emotional upheaval leads to extreme measures which later prove to be devastating beyond imagination. Where does one appeal when there is no moral authority? Who or what can give you sanity and perspective in the midst of the emotional storm? What character traits guide your life? How do you know what is true or false?
Without a moral undergirding, society is left in a sea of personal opinion and self guidance. All that is left is to satisfy the flesh, the carnal mind, the animalistic urges, and the brutal nature of fallen man. With no standard, we cannot achieve to higher thinking, altruistic acts of kindness, forbearance of ill treatment, unrequited love, and misunderstandings.
The Bible says that life is short. Really, the life on this earth is short, in this mortal body; and then life is eternal in the spiritual state, the eternal state. Suicide does not end life. It prematurely transitions the person into the eternal state, prepared or not prepared. It is a ruse of the enemy to make people believe if they take their life, it is all over. You cease to exist, the pain is gone, and blissful nothingness ensues. Wrong. The Bible indicates that the soul is immediately taken to Hell or escorted to Heaven depending on the relationship with Jesus. In my opinion, most of those who commit suicide do not have a relationship with Jesus. Mostly the transition from the pain of this world results in entering the realm of pain for eternity. It is not a relief, but an intensification of the same agony.
Yet, without the message of hope and the foundation of faith and morals, where can they find guidance? Obviously, all our studies in psychology have not remedied the situation because for all the counselors, there is an increase in the hopelessness. For all the blaming of parents and environment, we still are not seeing the healings and the healthiness of the society. It is actually sicker.
But, as I was preaching Sunday, where are the Christians whose lives exemplify godliness? When you as a believer are comfortable using gross, foul language and are purveyors vile behavior, where is the grace, the message? If you as a believer are living a life with little character value, where is the salt to change the world? If we view sexual immorality and promiscuity as normal and okay, where is the light of the world? 
Till we really begin to see the eternal picture, we are going to sway with the winds of the world and offer no hope, no answer, no guidance. If we fail, it does not change who God is, or change his message, or change the fact of His absolutes. It is we who have failed God and have failed the society, the time, the culture, and our place in history. The messengers, the light bearers, the salt shakers have failed those who are desperate, the hopeless, and the intellectual who finds no joy in living, and the wealthy who has nothing in his character. The hopelessness crosses all strata of life. Money or the lack there of does not cure the ills of the soul or guarantee a happy life or insure the destiny after the world.
The saints, the believers, the church, the kingdom of God, whatever you want to call yourself, it is imperative that we begin to live in a manner that makes a difference. You will not be exempt from marital problems, kid problems, job problems, health problems, but you will certainly handle them in a manner that is dramatically different than the world. Our hope is in nothing less than Christ and His redemptive sacrifice.
Jesus came and gave us guidance. “If you love me, keep my commandments.” Pretty straightforward and simple. Life is short. The learning curve is very steep. 
Life is long? No, Life is short!

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