I was trolling Facebook the other night. Don’t judge me. You do it too. While on there, I saw a meme that dealt with waiting. It really made me think. Waiting is a part of the Christian faith. We can point to many characters in Scripture that waited. Abraham and Sarah waited for the promised child. Joseph waited to be released from prison. The Children of Israel waited to enter the Promised Land. Noah waited for rain. On and on, we could go.
We also wait. We wait for the Lord’s direction in a specific circumstance. We wait for the Spirit to move in our services and in the hearts of those around us. We wait for revival. We wait…we wait…we wait.
Most importantly, we wait for the return of Jesus. Here is where the meme comes in. It simply asked the question, are you waiting for Jesus or the anti-Christ?
That is a profound question that deserves an answer. Unfortunately, we wait for Christ with our words, but for the anti-Christ with our actions. Please understand that I do not think there is anything wrong with being prepared, but I see a disconnect here. Many Christians have become what the world terms a “prepper.” I realize it is wise for earthquakes and other natural disasters. Yet, many I know talk about the end times and how that motivates them to prep.
Here is the rub with me. Jesus told the 70 to go out with nothing. No food. No money. Not even a clean robe. Why? The answer is simple yet vital to us. Jesus wanted His followers to trust Him for their needs. While it is great to be prepared, our preparedness must not take the place of faith. I have often told our church that God will have to multiply the bread and the fish if there are food shortages. If we can’t get medicines, Jesus will have to heal us or take us to heaven. Either way, we win on that one.
I think my greatest concern is the underlying thought here. We hold our own lives in too high of regard. We strive to live in such a way that we continue in safety and comfort. Correct me if I’m wrong, but Jesus never guaranteed us safety or comfort. In fact, He told us that if the world hated Him, it would hate us more. Jesus told us that days of tribulation would come. He even put an entire book centered on lament in our Bible.
Trials come, yes. It’s ok to be prepared, yes. Let us not value our lives to the point that we are unwilling to give it up for Jesus. I think of missionary friends that have left everything for the sake of reaching someone with the Gospel. In my faith tradition, there is an organization called “Live Dead.” They challenge us to live as though we were already dead. In other words, give it all to Jesus. Nothing else in this life truly matters.
As you ponder what the future might hold, don’t give in to fear. We are waiting on our Savior’s soon return, not the anti-Christ. For those that are in Christ Jesus, the anti-Christ cannot harm us. My personal theological belief (you may disagree, and that’s ok) is that we will be removed (raptured) before the anti-Christ is fully revealed. I do not live in fear of the future, but I rest in the promises of God’s Word.
Phil 4:19 “And this same God who takes care of me will supply all your needs from his glorious riches, which have been given to us in Christ Jesus.”
Next time you think about stocking up on TP and canned food, just ask yourself, “Who am I waiting for?”