The heat is simply oppressive. Every day a scorching sun with a dry hot wind assaults us. Kinda like living in a blow torch. Hot. Simply hot. I looked at the sun this morning as it tried to erupt around a patch of sorely missed clouds. I know, you’re not supposed to look at the sun but I did. It was beautiful. Everyday it comes up. Over and over. A brilliant sunrise and beautiful sunset are daily gifts from God. It is truly wonderful for He alone is able to fill us with wonder. In the middle of a long, hot, dry summer wonder sometimes seems far away. Almost lost. Especially in a land where gratuitous evil abounds. A place where even His own people have lost sight of His law. What wrong will “church people” call right next?
Our Holy God is not far away. He has not abandoned. He is watching, caring and moving. I’m amazed at the decisions we church people make regarding clearly unbiblical behavior, but then, really I guess I’m not so amazed. We are broken, evil folks who are often looking to make excuses for our immorality. If we deny our sin, it will consume us. It will eat us from the inside out never mind the fact that sin becomes cinders in His presence.
For those who are the “Called Out”, we must remember that we are pilgrims and as pilgrims this place just won’t ever quite seem like home. As we mature in Christ, it will seem less like home than ever. It may seem more like our evil stepmother’s house than home. We must walk on. Stay faithful. Learn to love those who are lost – not loathe them. Look for glimpses of God’s glory, holiness and righteousness in the beauty of our world around us. He does remind us. He intends to. We must LEARN to rejoice in every situation.
A day will come when he will bring justice with the fierceness of the blazing sun. He is a God of wrath whenever it comes to sin. It WILL be purged. The sin that we have rationalized, even defended and applauded, will be exposed and destroyed. Trust me, we don’t want to get caught in the crossfire. We must be covered with our Lord Jesus Christ so that on that day of judgment we can survive. Jesus is our life now and forever.
Malachi 4: 1 – 3
1 See, the day is coming, burning like an oven, when all the arrogant and all evildoers will be stubble; the day that comes shall burn them up, says the Lord of hosts, so that it will leave them neither root nor branch. 2 But for you who revere my name the sun of righteousness shall rise, with healing in its wings. You shall go out leaping like calves from the stall. 3 And you shall tread down the wicked, for they will be ashes under the soles of your feet, on the day when I act, says the Lord of hosts.
Revere your Father’s name. Hold Him in awe. Look for His glory even in the middle of an oppressive summer. Even when it seems like no human on earth could accomplish all that is on your plate at work. Even when your friends call evil, fun. Even when your family is dispersed. Even when you are alone and life seems blah. Even in a culture that has everything and continues to complain as if they have nothing. Even when “church people” applaud unbiblical lifestyles. If you will revere His name, He will rise like the sun of righteousness, through the person of the Son of Righteousness, in your life. He will bring healing, hope and righteousness. It is inherent to His being. He IS healing. He IS hope. He IS righteousness. You’ll find yourself jumping around like a happy cow who has just been released from the pen and is heading for the field! (Some of you farmer types can relate. For some of you the mental picture is more than you can bear. Sorry. Malachi said it. Not me.) Those wicked ones around us will be put away. He will act. He is not a distant, complacent God.
We can’t grow judgmental toward those who are without Christ, we must learn to love them in spite of their sin. Just as God loves us. However, we must continue to hold each other, those of us who are in Christ, accountable to live a life of holiness and purity. He has not left us alone. He has filled us with our Advocate, His Spirit. He has surrounded us with reminders of His righteousness, healing and glory. He is good. Be faithful. Keep the Faith.