“For God alone my soul waits in silence, for my hope is from him.
He alone is my rock and my salvation, my fortress; I shall not be shaken.
On God rests my deliverance and my honour; my mighty rock, my refuge is in God.” (Psalm 62:5-7)
The question has been, beloved reader, how do we preach to the generations who have no fear of this world ending, and so have to urgency to prepare for the world to come. Or as I posed the question back on Tuesday, “How do we preach, teach, and guide for the life to come when life here is defined only by age and calamity?“ In the past the foretelling of end times would motivate people to come to faith. But that is not as powerful a motivation now as in the past. When Christ walked the earth during his ministry people were drawn to him and coming to faith when you had a tangible and Divine guide seemed so logical and inevitable. But now, as “only” human flesh ourselves, the draw and pull to faith is not the same.
But I do have the answer, beloved reader. And you may well think that I am making more of this “question” than I ought to. Or that when you hear my answer, you might think I have been “stringing” you along. But in this year of renewal and recommitment, I am deeply about how one might draw people back to faith who have drifted away.
“Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your heart before him;
God is a refuge for us. Selah” (Psalm 62:8)
It is implicit in our modern times that life is difficult and there is heartbreak along the way. There are some who survive it, and some who are destroyed by it. Many who survive (I do not say “all” because I do not believe in being absolute or all-encompassing) have found strength and endurance to carry on because of their faith. And in a world that seems to be running headlong into ruin with no end in sight, having “help and hope along the way” is a tremendous blessing.
“Those of low estate are but a breath, those of high estate are a delusion;
in the balances they go up; they are together lighter than a breath.
Put no confidence in extortion, and set no vain hopes on robbery; if riches increase, do not set your heart on them.” (Psalm 62: 9-10)
It is not so much, beloved reader, what you say to others if/as you preach and teach to them, but what they see as evidence in your life. The wealthy and powerful have as much problems in life as the poor and needy. We see that in the news and in the social media everyday.
“Once God has spoken; twice have I heard this:
that power belongs to God, and steadfast love belongs to you, O Lord.
For you repay to all according to their work.” (Psalm 62:5-12)
So . . . now . . . the answer to the question . . . it is this. Preach and teach not about theology, philosophy, or any world to come doctrine. Preach and teach about what it means to live in the world today. To live each day . . . with compassion, caring and integrity.
I am sure some days or weeks or months down the road, I will probably talk/write about the “world to come” – the eternal hereafter. And no doubt I will warn you about what will happen if you do not pay heed to this. But when I think about the world today, what each of us wakes up to face each day, I realize we all need God. Not for the time to come, but NOW! Today! This second! Because without God what ever days may come in the here or the hereafter will be empty.
Blessing to you, beloved reader. I will talk to you again next week.