Posted by: trbccoffeebreak | July 21, 2020

Get Me Outta Here

The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance. 2 Peter 3:9

In this time of tumult, when everything seems upside-down, it’s hard to talk about things other than all the insanity. Whether it’s economic fallout from this virus, accepted lawlessness in the streets, or the dismantling of our foundational liberties, no one is unaffected. As for me, I feel like I have to be that proverbial kid trying to stay oblivious to her surroundings, with fingers in ears, eyes shut, shouting, “Lalalalalala!”

So, when I make time to get together with friends, we talk of family matters, work, and perhaps some mundane pleasantries. But each of these conversations (by phone, video, or in person) comes back to the madness swirling around us. And when my time is being spent with a Christian sister, we seem to come to the same conclusion: Things are so bad…oh, that the Lord would come back and take us out of here!

Things are bad—there’s no doubt about that. But they’re not as bad as they could (will?) be. In fact, if you’re familiar with Church history, you know that when the Apostle Paul was helping establish and exhort the first generations of Christians, the modern world was ruled by a guy named Nero. Our culture today has a growing disdain for Believers. Nero, however, despised them. He not only made an arena sport from death-by-lion, but he dipped Christians in wax, hung them around his property, and burned them as mood lighting for his nighttime garden parties.

I have no doubt that those Christians believed—and prayed—that Jesus was coming back any minute. But God regularly reminded them through the words of the New Testament writers that no one can know when Jesus is returning for His Church. Because of that fact, Believers were urged to be vigilant and steadfast in their walk. And all those reminders are for us as well. First Thessalonians, chapter 5, exhorts us to be sober and ready. Mark tells us to be on alert (Mark 13:35). And as we wait, we’re to live holy and godly lives (2 Peter 3:11-12).

Why didn’t Jesus come back when His people were being burned in Nero’s backyard? Why hasn’t He returned during the past 1800 years of global Christian persecution, wars, pestilence, and famine? And why has He not plucked us out from this current pandemic and civil unrest?

Because God so loved the world that He gave His only Son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life (John 3:15). And the Lord is patient with us humans, not wanting anyone to perish—but for everyone to repent and come to Him (2 Peter 3:9).

You and I may have trusted Jesus with our lives and future. We know, in the end, He wins—and because we’re on His team, we win too. But, sisters, Jesus wants everyone on his team. Even the “Neros” of our world today.

Jesus may very well return for His Church today. But He might not. So, as we keep an eye in the clouds and an ear out for the trumpet, let’s continue to fight the good fight. To be vigilant, sober-minded, and ready. And let’s spread the Good News to all who will listen that God is not done yet—there’s still room on His team.

Lord, I so want you to take me home. But, in the meantime, strengthen me to use the unrest of today to share the Gospel with others.


For His Glory

Julianne Winkler Smith
TRBC Women’s Ministry

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