It is day 50 of the BP Gulf of Mexico oil spill with no foreseeable fix in sight. In spite of the fact that the current cap is helping to siphon a significant volume of oil, it is also revealing a magnitude to this spill that is far greater than we were initially led to believe. For those whose entire way of life is at stake, the growing question is, “Can it get any worse?”
How often have we echoed that very same question in recent years? Volcanoes! Earthquakes! Terrorist attacks! Financial meltdowns! Out of control government leaders! High energy prices! Just what is happening in our world?
A treasured way of life is slipping through our fingers and there seems to be little that we can do to stop it. I’m not a fatalist, but as a whole I believe our world is moving in a predetermined direction. These are the signs of the times. But what are the signs pointing to? The coming of Christ’s kingdom!
“You will hear of wars and rumors of wars. Make sure that you are not alarmed, for this must happen, but the end is still to come. For nation will rise up in arms against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. And there will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these things are the beginning of birth pains.”
“Then they will hand you over to be persecuted and will kill you. You will be hated by all the nations because of my name. Then many will be led into sin, and they will betray one another and hate one another. And many false prophets will appear and deceive many, and because lawlessness will increase so much, the love of many will grow cold. But the person who endures to the end will be saved. And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached throughout the whole inhabited earth as a testimony to all the nations, and then the end will come.” Matthew 24:6-14 (NET)
The point of it all? From a natural perspective, the worst is yet to come. But from God’s supernatural perspective, the Gospel of the kingdom will continue to spread in a big way.
For us it’s a matter of overcoming and overcoming involves the ability to maintain tender, loving hearts in the midst of very unloving and even unjust circumstances. If our hearts grow hard, deception will be sure to follow.
Once again, faith is critical to our spiritual vitality. When we process the extreme challenges of our day through faith, it all comes out love. But if our hearts are unbelieving, you can be sure that end product will be a hard, cynical and embittered perspective of God and life.
Can it get any worse? Yes it can and yes it will. Will it get any better? Only if we learn to process our trails through faith in Christ!