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Sunday, November 13, 2005

Word For The Week

Are you ready to die? We usually don't think about death in those stark terms, but everyone needs to ask themselves if they are ready to die because death can come knocking at the most unexpected and inopportune times. We generally see death as something that we'll have to deal with a long time from know, somewhere in the distant future, but as the people of Amman, Jordan found out this past week, death can come upon you like a thief in the night while you are sleeping peacefully. As Yitzhak Rabin found out death can come knocking when you are on the verge of your greatest accomplishment. And as far too many drivers have found out, death can come at any moment when you are driving your car, so the question of the hour is, "Are you ready to face death?"

Paul said that to live is Christ and to die is gain. So long as we breathe in and breath out, we who call ourselves Christians have a job to do, namely to advance the cause of Christ, to seek the Kingdom of God, to facilitate the reconciliation of the world back to God. We are to let our light so shine that men might see our good works and glorify God in heaven. Are you ready to stand before God and give an account of your stewardship? Is it truly "Christ" for you to live or is it all about self-satisfaction? When death comes knocking on your door are you prepared to look death in the face and smile right back?

Not only do we need to have the vertical relationship in order, but we must have our horizontal relationships in order as well, for the two are intricately connected. How many times have we heard about people going to funerals and lamenting the fact that they never told the deceased how they really felt about them? How many times have we heard about people mourning because they never restored their relationship with the deceased? How many times have we heard about people grieving over the person that they were going to call next week in order to forgive them and ask forgiveness of them?

Tomorrow is not promised.

All that you have is right now - yesterday is a canceled check and tomorrow is a promissory note, but today is cash-in-hand - what are you going to do with it? We who call ourselves Christians have been called to spread the good news of Jesus Christ to every nation, tongue, and tribe. We who call ourselves Christians have been elected to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, and comfort the sick and imprisoned. We who call ourselves Christians have been set apart to establish redemptive relationships with our friends, neighbors, and acquaintances such that one day they may say, "What must I do to be saved?"

This is the day that the Lord has made - what are you going to do with your day? Could you stand before Jesus Christ today and give an account of your stewardship of all that He has given you, or are you hiding your talents in the ground? If you are indeed ready to stand before Jesus - if you have your oil ready - then like Paul said, to die is gain. However, if you are not ready then there will be weeping, wailing, and gnashing of teeth. As the old folks used to say, "Get right Church and let's go home."

Choose this day whom you will serve, because tomorrow is not promised.

May the LORD bless you and keep you;
May the LORD make His face shine upon you and be gracious to you;
And may the LORD,
Who wants you to get with Him today,
My He turn His face toward you and give you peace.

Emancipated by Athanasius @ 11:00 AM

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