Oh my, Ida! Small, petite, harmless-sounding name. Powerful, punishing, devastating hurricane/tropical storm/all-around misery-generator.
Wildfires. The season almost seems perpetual now. Never-ending. The power and destruction of a wall of flames is both awesome and awful. Even where there are no flames, smoke affects millions miles away.
For the last 18 months in the U.S., SARS-CoV-2 (better known as COVID-19) has been spooking around. Everything, and I mean everything, around this pandemic has been discussed and argued and disagreed upon every which way.
Politics. Local, state, national – disheartening at every level.
Social media does more harm than good. Come at me, if you disagree. Just kidding – trying to keep things light.
The collective, cumulative impact on life in the midst of this moment in history has been staggering: financially, culturally, spiritually.
What in the world is going on? I’m doing it again. You may be doing it as well. Look all around us and inside of ourselves, and there’s not much in the realm of positive. But God’s people look up and away from ourselves and from this earth. God’s people look to our Lord, who knows exactly what’s going on and what he’s doing.
“6 You will hear of wars and rumors of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. 7 Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. 8 All these are the beginning of birth pains.
9 “Then you will be handed over to be persecuted and put to death, and you will be hated by all nations because of me. 10 At that time many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other, 11 and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people. 12 Because of the increase of wickedness, the love of most will grow cold, 13 but the one who stands firm to the end will be saved.” (Matthew 24:6-13 NIV)
Lesson #1 – Don’t be surprised by all that is going on. And, don’t be alarmed or afraid.
Lesson #2 - “Do not be afraid. I am the First and the Last. I am the Living One; I was dead, and now look, I am alive for ever and ever! And I hold the keys of death and Hades.” (Jesus in Revelation 1:17b,18 NIV)
“He who testifies to these things says, ‘Yes, I am coming soon.’
Amen. Come, Lord Jesus.
The grace of the Lord Jesus be with God’s people. Amen.” (Revelation 22:20,21)
Yes, Lord Jesus, come. And soon.
God keep you in his loving care,
Pastor Stephen Luchterhand