There’s no time for this! {Warning: I’m yelling in this post. At myself mostly.}

You know what keeps you locked in a cage of doing what you know is wrong when there’s a clear way out? A total ignorance, a total unawareness, a total blindness, a total denial of the times.

When a person knows their about to die you know what they don’t do? They don’t say, “You know what, I’m gonna die tomorrow so today I’m going to cheat on my husband, destroy my marriage, break trust with everyone I know, defame the name of Christ that I carry around in the title “Christian”, abandon my kids, rob a bank, and do every other vile and deplorable thing I can think of that for a fleeting period of time might give me some sense of pleasure, or freedom or vengeance because tomorrow I’m going to die and that’s the way I want to spend the rest of my life. That’s what I want people to remember me for when I go.  That’s what I want them to think of when they think of a Christian.

No one says that!

But many do it.

And the only reason we do it is because we’re in total denial. We refuse to believe there’s no time for such things. We refuse to believe the end of all things is at hand. We refuse to believe we’re going to die and leave a reputation behind and face the One who made us, the One we’ve been naming ourselves after so easily.

Christian. Really? Are you really? Am I really? Am I a Christ-ian? A “little Christ”?

I am. I say I am. I carry around His name. And One day I’ll meet him face to face.

The end of all things is at hand. I do not get to stay here this side of that day forever. I only get a time. A very short time.

So many of us in the Disneyland of America are in a tangled web- abandoning our vows to each other, indulging in sexual pleasures outside of marriage, consuming images for our pleasure, ignoring the needs of those around us- we toy with sin and wrestle with whether God will forgive us if we chose to keep toying, and we argue with each other about various doctrines… and we’re fools! There’s no time!

There’s no time to caress our pity party about our less than ideal marriage and feast ourselves on the cocaine of a forbidden relationship. There’s no time!! We carry the name of Christ. We will see him face to face one day. We won’t just live this life forever apart from a day of reckoning. We don’t have time to toy with sin. We have wasted enough of our lives on those lies and traps and temporary pleasures (that are really chains)!

We only have a short time here to pray and watch the God of all the earth do amazing things through us! Us!

You know, I hear the call from godly men and women to stand for the unborn and those enslaved in human trafficking.  I hear the call to be willing to stand out as “hateful” in a world that will hate you for loving them and unashamedly confessing that God designed marriage between a man and woman.  I hear a call for embracing all races and ethnic groups as equally bearing the image of God, and for pointing to the blood of Christ as the only hope for any man.  I hear the call to abandon comfort and ease to go to an unreached people group, bringing them the light and truth of Christ.  I hear their calls and I think we’re over here wasting our lives on sinful pleasures and desires, arguing amongst ourselves about what the Bible says and our seconds and minutes and hours and days and years tick by and we trample under our feet the blood of Christ, clinging to our sin, mocking God and declaring we can continue in sin because grace abounds.  All the while those who rightly call themselves Christians are spending their minutes and months and lives fighting to stand against the devil’s schemes, putting their own lives in the way of those marching to slaughter and giving up domestic life for a very uncomfortable life reaching people who’ve never heard of their Savior.  And it’s not just those “glamorous” calls that Christians are spending their lives on.  They’re bending their knees to raise up a child day in and day out with prayer and teaching and nurture in the Spirit of Christ  They’re denying themselves to love a world-weary man who doesn’t love them well.  They’re laying down their lives to tender-heartedly love a woman whose bitternesses are spreading.

So you’re not called to sell all your possessions and move to the Congo.  But, when those thoughts come, “He’s never going to change… I don’t deserve to be treated like this… I’m not loved like I long to be loved… No one cares what I want, what I desire… What about me?…” When those poisoned-laced darts of sweet lies penetrate my brain I need to declare: THERE’S NO TIME FOR THIS!!

I need to take up the sword of the Spirit which is the word of God and destroy that lying worm with 1 Peter 4.

So then, since Christ suffered physical pain, you must arm yourselves with the same attitude he had, and be ready to suffer, too. For if you have suffered physically for Christ, you have finished with sin. You won’t spend the rest of your lives chasing your own desires, but you will be anxious to do the will of God. You have had enough in the past of the evil things that godless people enjoy—their immorality and lust, their feasting and drunkenness and wild parties, and their terrible worship of idols.

Of course, your former friends are surprised when you no longer plunge into the flood of wild and destructive things they do. So they slander you. But remember that they will have to face God, who stands ready to judge everyone, both the living and the dead. The end of the world is coming soon. Therefore, be earnest and disciplined in your prayers. Most important of all, continue to show deep love for each other, for love covers a multitude of sins.  Cheerfully share your home with those who need a meal or a place to stay. God has given each of you a gift from his great variety of spiritual gifts. Use them well to serve one another. Do you have the gift of speaking? Then speak as though God himself were speaking through you. Do you have the gift of helping others? Do it with all the strength and energy that God supplies. Then everything you do will bring glory to God through Jesus Christ. All glory and power to him forever and ever! Amen. – 1 Peter 4:1-5,7-11

You and I need to let the pain of the battle to stand in Christ free us when our husbands don’t love us like they should, and our children require us to constantly give our time and energy and life, and our bosses fire us because of our expressed beliefs when asked, and our neighbor rejects us because of our refusal to celebrate same-sex unions, and our friends cut us off because we won’t pat them on the back and join in with encouraging them in the sin that is destroying their lives.  When those things happen, you and I need to let those pains, those sufferings come so we can be one battle closer to being done with sinning! We need to let those trials come and hurt us so we can stop spending the rest of our lives chasing our own desires but rather wake up every day on edge to do the will of God! Instead of running away from the pain and suffering that comes with following Christ, we need to let it free us from the chains of sin and to a life abandoned to his will.

And if we find ourselves in the pit of the sinful mess we’ve made of our lives, right now, there is time to turn around, and stop denying the truth, and let the blood of Christ be enough for us to stop wasting our lives on our own desires and spend our lives on HIS!  There’s no time for anything else!

Sobered,
Sheila

Truth fails

Have you heard of this, Whale Wars? It’s a new series on Animal Planet. I watched a piece of it the other day and here’s what angered me.

Here’s a group of people who obviously are passionate about saving the lives of a creature God made… whales. They take great risks and go to great lengths to disturb and disrupt to ultimately stop the process of whaling on the part of the Japanese.

Here’s what Animal Planet says about the groups tactics and purpose:

The Society’s fight to eradicate Japanese whaling on the high seas — where
international laws are interpreted by different countries and organizations
in different ways — utilizes some aggressive techniques, including ramming
and disabling whaling ships; disrupting whale carcass processing; engaging
in physical entanglement; and boarding and dispersing fleets of whaling
vessels. For the campaign this season, Sea Shepherd christened its vessel in
honor of the iconic conservationist Steve Irwin with the blessing of his
wife Terri, both of whom support the organization independent of Animal
Planet.

Whaling has no place in the 21st century,” noted Watson. “Sea Shepherd
will not stop until the killing ends.”

Oh my heart!!! All I can hear when I read about this group, or see their show, is the silent cries of millions of unborn, and newly born humans babies… the only creature on the planet God created in His own image and in whom He puts His own Spirit… and I cry, “Infanticide and abortion has no place in the 21st century… in any century!!!!!” Will I not stop crying out until the killing ends?!

I want to cry, “How is this happening?!!! This is not right!!!! There shouldn’t be millions of dollars and programs on T.V. going to the dangerous effort of ending whaling, when the most precious of creatures on the earth are being slaughtered daily under the oppressive lie that it’s a “right” and a very “controversial issue” so one dare not speak too loudly, much less make any kind of disturbance in the process! “

Where is truth!!!!!?


I had all this on my heart this morning and then I read Elizabeth Elliot’s devotional. Here’s some of it:

Give Them Parking Space, But Let Them Starve to Death

Another moral threshold was crossed when a tiny baby boy, at the specific request of his parents and with the sanction of the Supreme Court of Indiana, was starved to death in a hospital. “Infant Doe” (he was not allowed the usual recognition of being human by being named), born with Down’s syndrome and a malfunctioning esophagus (the latter could have been corrected with surgery), died, as the Washington Post (April 18) stated, “not because he couldn’t sustain life without a million dollars worth of medical machinery, but because no one fed him.” For six days the nurses in that Bloomington hospital went about their usual routines of bathing and changing and feeding all the newborns except one. They bathed and changed Baby Doe but they never gave him a bottle. Over his crib was a notice, DO NOT FEED. Several couples came forward, begging to be allowed to adopt him. They were turned down.

What went on in that little box during those six terrible days and nights? We turn our imagination away. It’s unthinkable. But if I were to think about it, and put down on paper what my mind saw, I would be accused of playing on people’s feelings, and of making infanticide (yes, infanticide–call it what it is) an “emotional issue.” Let me suppose at least that the baby cried–quite loudly (at first). One report says that he was placed in a room alone, lest his crying disturb others (others, perhaps, who were capable of helping him).

Joseph Sobran, in his column in the Los Angeles Times Syndicate, suggested that “opposition to infanticide will soon be deplored as the dogma of a few religious sects who want to impose their views on everyone else.” The language sounds sickeningly familiar.

There has been a conspicuous silence from those who usually raise shrill protest when other human rights are violated–the rights of smokers, homosexuals, and criminals are often as loudly insisted upon as those of children, women, and the handicapped.

The handicapped? What on earth is happening when a society is so careful to provide premium parking spaces to make things easier for them, but sees no smallest inconsistency when one of them who happens to be too young to scream, “For God’s sake, feed me!” is quietly murdered? It is in the name of humanity, humaneness, compassion, and freedom that these things occur, but never is it acknowledged that the real reasons are comfort and convenience, that is, simple selfishness.
“Abortion not only prefers comfort, convenience, or advantage of the pregnant woman to the very life of her unborn child, a fundamentally good thing, but seeks to deny that the life ever existed. In this sense it is a radical denial not only of the worth of a specific life but of the essential goodness of life itself and the Providential ordering of its procreation” (R.V. Young, “Taking Choice Seriously,” The Human Life Review, Vol. VIII, no. 3.)

But weren’t we talking about infanticide and haven’t we now switched to abortion? The premises on which abortion is justified are fundamentally the same on which infanticide is seen as civilized and acceptable. What Hitler used to call eugenics is now called “quality of life,” never mind whether the life in question happens to be the mother’s or the child’s. Death, according to three doctors who put the issue out into the open in the New England Journal of Medicine in 1973, is now considered an option in the “treatment” of infants; in other words, a mortuary may now replace the nursery. One cannot help thinking of the antiseptic “shower rooms” of the Third Reich, where the unwanted were “treated” to death. Nor can one forget the words of Jesus, “Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me” (Matthew 25:40, KJV).

Can any Christian argue that the smallest and most defenseless are, by virtue merely of being too small and too defenseless, not His brethren?

Oh dear Lord Jesus! I’m overwhelmed! I immediately think of Isaiah 58, where You teach me to fast and pray, not for strife or debate, or to strike with the fist of wickedness, but to loose the bonds of wickedness, to undo heavy burdens, to let the oppressed go free, to break every yoke, to share with the hungry and be hospitable to the poor, and to cover those who are naked and not hide myself from my own flesh. (Isaiah 58:4,6-7). I want to fast for strife or debate about the “abortion issue”! I want to strike with the fist of wickedness like the “Sea Shepherd”… it’s what immediately rises up in me! But the anger of man does not achieve the righteousness of God! (James 1:20). So Your Spirit shows me the answer and the problem:

Justice is turned back, and righteousness stands afar off; for truth is fallen in the street, and equity cannot enter. So truth fails, and he who departs from evil makes himself a prey. Then the LORD saw it, and it displeased Him that there was no justice. He saw that there was no intercessor; therefore His own arm brought salvation for Him… He put on the garments of vengeance for clothing, and was clad with zeal as a cloak. According to their deeds, accordingly He will repay… the coastlands He will fully repay. So shall they fear the name of the LORD from the west, and His glory from the rising of the sun; when the enemy comes in like a flood, the Spirit of the LORD will lift up a standard against him.”

Isaiah 59:14-16, 17-19

Truth fails in the west, in the coastlands, in the place where the rising of the sun is. And what is our part? Not to fast for debate or strife. Not to go the way of Peter in cutting off the offenders’ ear, or the way of the Sea Shepherd in pirating whaling vessels, or bombing abortion clinics… NO! Our part is departing from this evil, though in doing so we make ourselves prey!

As Elizebeth wrote, “Can any Christian argue that the smallest, and most defenseless are, by virtue of merely being too small and too defenseless, not His brethren?”

We who call ourselves the Lord’s must repent of our own sins against the lives of the small and defenseless, and depart from this evil though it makes us vulnerable to the lying, murdering culture we have had a role in creating. WE must abide, and join with, the One who has interceded for us and intercede in much praying! But we must leave the vengeance to the LORD and be thankful that He will repay in perfect justice, not so we or they will be destroyed, but so we will again fear the name of the LORD in the west, because He’ll show us His deliverance when the enemy comes in like a flood and He raises up a standard against him.

We must wait on the LORD and pray fervently and ourselves depart from evil and be willing to be vulnerable to the violence of others when we lovingly speak the truth and cry out for the smallest and the defenseless, teaching others that Christ has made the life of all humanity more valuable than any life on this earth.

May His love draw others out of lies into truth, and may we be willing to suffer as prey to prove His love in our own lives. May we be quick to repent of our own evil and quick to cover the nakedness of others praying for the perfect, loving, merciful justice of the Lord to come to us in the west… that we may fear HIM again!

****

About the Baby Doe case cited in Elizabeth Elliot’s article.
Redeeming the time,