On December 14, 2012 cries from the depths of the earth assuredly reached the ears of the Creator as a very troubled young man walked into an elementary school and took the life of 20 children and six adults.
The nation was broken-hearted and horrified as broadcast details filled TV screens with images of grade school children being lead out of the building. There was no explanation, other than a new level of evil had arrived on the doorsteps of a place most vulnerable. Christmas presents had been purchased and plans had been made for those twenty-six souls. Nothing in this world can soothe or console the friends and loved ones who experienced such an inexplicable loss. I can't imagine what it was like in those homes Christmas morning because...
it is unimaginable.
In such times, I find solace in the Word, "Fear not; I am the First and the Last; I am the Living One; I was dead and behold I am alive forever and ever and I hold the Keys of Death and Hades. (Revelation 1:18)" Jesus was, is and is to come. Nothing happens in this world without His knowledge. ALL of our days are known to Him before one of them comes into being. He knows, He knows, He knows.
The tragedy came one week short of the end of the Mayan calendar and the anticipated "end of the world as we know it" predictions. For the families impacted by the horrific life-altering event it most certainly was an end to the world they knew and looked forward to.
That same day, on the other side of the globe, another death occurred. The Pastor I was serving with when I was attacked in India, was killed in a car wreck. Even though I was 8,000 miles away and our contact was intermittent, it still came as a shock. It was Peter Jamkhandi's birthday. He was in the middle of a Pastor's Training Seminar with a team of Americans. They shared a prayer for the celebration of his life, and then he was off to Gokak (the very city we were attacked in) to perform a wedding ceremony and return later that day. He never made it...
...just like the 20 children and 6 adults of Sandy Hook.
People were waiting for them, people were expecting them, people were going on about the business of life - and then they were ushered unwillingly into the business of death, loss, grieving and funerals. These two events (one a world-wide news maker and the other barely a mention in the local Indian post) convicted me of the uncertainty of our times. The whole world doesn't have to end for an individual to experience an "end of their world." I'm committed afresh, to making every day one of purpose and Kingdom advancement; just like my friend Pastor Peter, who blew out celebratory candles of "this" life hours before being welcomed in to his "real" life.
"And now I have a word for you who brashly announce, "Today-at the latest, tomorrow-we're off to such and such city for the year. We're going to start a business and make a lot of money." You don't know the first thing about tomorrow. You're nothing but a wisp of fog, catching a brief bit of sun before disappearing. Instead, make it a habit to say, "if the Master will it and we're still alive, we'll do this or that." James 4:14 The Message
The New Year is just days away. The common cultural practice of making resolutions to do (blank) better, more, or less occupies our thoughts. The indulgence of holiday feasts makes many conscious of the next "diet" that will begin January FIRST! My resolution is to start each day with the advice in James, "if the Master will it and I'm still alive..." I've often said, "should the Lord tarry (to the irritation and aggravation of my friends), in 2013 I'm changing it up with the resolution I learned from Joni Earekson Tada: Give the Lord one day, He can use it in His economy like it was a thousand!
"With God, one day is as good as a thousand years, a thousand years as a day. God isn't late with His promise as some measure lateness. He is restraining himself on account of you, holding back the End because He doesn't want anyone lost..... Interpret our Master's patient restraint for what it is: salvation." 2 Peter 3:9,14 The Message
There are still billions of people lost in this world. That is a number hard to fathom. But as we unite together to be about the Father's business, those lost sheep don't have to fall off "the cliff" (so recently in the news) they can lean on the everlasting arms, knowing the safety and security of the One who holds our times in His hands. I'm excited to see what He has in store, the places, the faces, and the people at the ends of the earth who will be dancing the chicken dance!
"From now on, you're the good-news people. Don't be afraid. Keep a firm grip on what I'm doing." Zechariah 8:13 The Message
Make this coming year historical! You still have three days to make your year-end financial donations for the work of Sunshine After Rain Ministries. We are advancing the Kingdom through our on-gong work with orphans, widows, wounded warriors and their families; people disenfranchised in the eyes of the world, but precious in the eyes of the Savior! We go behind enemy lines!
Keep us armed and dangerous with the ammunition of prayers and significant financial support. These last days are a battle with eternal consequence!
"But let us go out with the patient power of knowing that the God of Israel will go before us. It is true we have lost opportunities that will never return, but God can transform this destructive anxiety into a constructive thoughtfulness for the future. Let the past rest in the sweet embrace of Christ.
Leave the broken, irreversible past in His hands, and step out into the future with Him." Oswald Chambers - My Utmost for His Highest
Temporarily out of ammunition, but smiling knowing reinforcements are on the way!
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Sunshine After Rain Ministries
10024 Regal Park Lane
Dallas TX 75230
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