The Clock is Ticking


Jesus in the clouds

“Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come.” Matthew 24:42

Imagine with me for a moment: You wake up one morning and crawl out of bed. You sleepily go into the kitchen, turn the coffee pot on, and begin to do things just as you normally do every day. You turn the television on to see what the news is reporting for that day. As the television comes on, before the picture even gets clear, you hear the panic in the reporters voice as she tries to calmly explain what is taking place. It seems that overnight something unexplainable has happened. Millions of people have just vanished. Parents can not find their children. Nurses are missing their patients. The hospital nursery has been robbed of every single newborn. Chaos is building.

You begin to panic. Not because of all the horrible things being reported on the news. No, this panic is coming from somewhere deep in your heart. Why? Because you are suddenly faced with the reality that it has actually happened. You begin to think back on all those years you listened to your grandma talk about getting your life right, about all the church services you sat through, halfheartedly listening to the preacher speak about a day coming soon when your life as you know it would end.  Oh, it all seemed like a bunch of make-believe back then. Why, just yesterday your mama called to say that she was praying for you and that she hoped you would join her for church on Sunday. As these memories play through your mind like a movie in slow motion, you feel tears begin to roll down your face. You feel the panic rising in your chest, and at that moment you have no choice but to admit it: Jesus has returned and you have been left behind.

Friend, I realize that the picture I have just painted for you is a made up story. Please understand, however, that even though the story is made up, the subject we are talking about is very real. It is coming sooner than you think, and if you are not prepared it will catch you off guard. We are told in the Bible that no one knows when God will send His son, Jesus, to come get His children. We are told that Jesus will come as a thief in the night. This does not necessarily mean that Jesus will return at night. It means that He will return quietly, quickly, without warning.

You will not have time to prepare. You will not have time to get it together then. No, when Jesus does come back to take God’s children home, it will be too late to change your mind. Your decision will have been made. You will then be left to suffer through the most horrific days this world has ever seen.

Normally I would take this time to encourage you. This morning I want to take a moment to plead with you. If you have never accepted Jesus into your heart, if you have never turned your life over to God, if you have never allowed Jesus to come in and change you, Please do not wait. I truly believe that Jesus could return any day. Do not wait until it is too late. Please do not be the one about whom I was telling the story.

God has made it very simple for you. He has laid out the plan. He has paid the price. All you have to do is accept the free gift that Jesus has offered you. All you have to do is admit that you have sinned and commit to a life that will be spent doing your best to honor God and keep His commandments. Three words stand between you and complete forgiveness of your sins. Those three words are, Father forgive me. It really is that simple.

Now, I want to encourage you. If you have not been saved, if you have not allowed Jesus to come in and wash your sins away, please do it right now. If in reading this you have come to the realization that you need this forgiveness and you have prayed a prayer of repentance let me be the first one to welcome you into God’s family. If you have been a Christian for many years, let me just encourage you to keep fighting the good fight.

I firmly believe with all of my heart that we are living in the last days. I believe that any day now Jesus could split the eastern sky and call all of His children to Heaven to be with Him. I am looking forward to that day, and I want you to be there with me.

You have a choice to make. Believe me when I say, “Your life depends on it.” Will you take some time to consider what you have just read this morning? If you have questions, feel free to leave me a comment here, or you can even visit me on Facebook. My email address is listed in the “About Me” section if you would like to send me an email.

Let me end by reminding you of this: Jesus loves you so much that He was willing to die on a cross for your sins. He loves you so much that He not only died on a cross for your sins, He has even gone to Heaven to prepare a place just for you.

How could you turn your back on the one who loves you enough to die for you? How could you turn down such a wonderful gift as this? Will you accept His gift today?

Part 1: The Seriousness of Sin


chains

“For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,”

Romans 3:23

How serious is sin?

The Bible tells us in Romans 6:23a

“For the wages of sin is death.”

I would say that is pretty serious. Would you agree?

Why then do we treat sin as if it is harmless?

And why do we categorize sin as if one is worse than the others?

This verse tells us that the wages of SIN is death. It does not say that the wages of  some sin is death.

I fear today that we as a people have forgotten the seriousness of sin, and what it does to our lives.

Sin causes a lot of trouble in our lives.

First, Sin saturates.

Sin is not just something that we do. We sometimes look at sin and think to ourselves, “I’m not hurting anyone,” but is that true? Can we really harmlessly sin? I do not believe that we can. I believe that unforgiven sin is like a disease, like cancer; it may start out as something small and harmless, but left untreated it grows, it saturates into every part of us.

Second, sin separates.

Sin is one of those things that looks fun at the time, but as it progresses we find ourselves separated and alone.

Do you remember when Jesus was on the cross? Do you know why he was in so much anguish? Yes, it was from physical pain, but I believe that it was also because of the separation he felt from His Heavenly Father. You see, when Jesus took on the sins of the world (those would be my sins and your sins)  they caused separation between Jesus and His father. We read in Matthew 27:46: ” And about the ninth hour Jesus cried with a loud voice, saying, Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani? that is to say, My God, my God, why hast thou forsaken me?”  God is a  Holy God, he can not dwell where sin abides. When we sin we not only separate ourselves from those we love, but more importantly we separate ourselves from God.

Finally, sin destroys.

We read in Romans 6:23a: “For the wages of sin is death.” That does not leave much room for discussion. In God’s word, He is very clear about sin and what it brings. So many times in life we see this play out. Someone decides to dabble in sin and before they know it their life has been turned upside down. How many times has one drink turned into a life of drunkenness and broken families, one pill turned into hundreds of dollars wasted on drugs that do not satisfy any longer, or one dirty picture turned into a downward spiral of pornography addiction and broken relationships?

God has not given us His word to bind us, to control us, or to keep us from having fun. God has given us His word so that we can be safe, so that we can live, and so that we can be free. The second part of Romans 6:23 tells us, “but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.” Praise God that He did not just leave us in our sin. He loved us so much that He gave His only Son to come to this earth and to die for you and for me.

I know this post today has not been the normal encouraging, uplifting, motivating words that you normally find here, but I believe that it is what God has placed on my heart to share today. I pray that you will take what you have read today and think about it. Sin is  not something that we should take lightly. It is serious business.

Along with the title for today’s entry I feel that God has also given me a second part. Monday we will discuss: The freedom of Forgiveness. Thank God that he did not just leave us where we were, but He looked ahead in time and saw where we were going, and He has made a way.

God bless you today. I look forward to discussing this further on Monday.

Motivational Monday: Remodeling


 Photo credit: Leon H. Abdalian

Photo credit: Leon H. Abdalian

Behold, I stand at the door, and knock:

if any man hear my voice, and open the door,

I will come in to him, and will sup with him,

and he with me.”

Revelation 3:20

My husband and I spent this past weekend redecorating our little girl’s bedroom. What started out as a drab, in-much-need-of remodeling room, has now been transformed into a cozy, purple bedroom, fit for a princess ( that is what her daddy calls her).

As I was thinking about all of the work that was done this weekend to get Princess D’s bedroom ready for her, I was reminded of a story that my Mom would tell when I was a little girl:

A long time ago, there was a man who had a house. One day he decided to invite a guest to come and live in his house. The guest’s name was Jesus. At the man’s request, Jesus gladly moved into his home and began to live there.

One day the man and Jesus were visiting and Jesus told the man that there were some things that needed to be done in his house. Jesus had been looking around and had found some things that were in need of repair. Jesus kindly asked the man if it would be alright for Him to do some remodeling.

The man thought about the offer for a moment, and decided that, yes, there was one room that needed to have some work done. The man led Jesus down the hall to a particular room and unlocked the door. Jesus went in and began to move things around. He did away with things that were not healthy for the man to have, and Jesus turned the cold, drab room into something beautiful.

The man was happy with Jesus living in his house. He enjoyed the fellowship.

As time went on, from time to time Jesus would mention other rooms that needed to be cleaned out. The man would unlock the door for Jesus, and Jesus would begin to clean each room out, removing what was dirty and unhealthy, and turning that room into something beautiful.

The man began to notice a change in his house. He realized how good it felt each time he would listen to Jesus’ word, unlock a door, and allow Jesus to go in and clean out each room.

One day, however, as the man and Jesus were talking, Jesus asked about a room that was in the back of the house. Jesus told the man that He would like to go in and clean out that room because he noticed something especially foul-smelling coming from it. The man knew immediately which room Jesus was talking about but refused to let Jesus in. The man told Jesus, “You can have any room in my house except for this room.”

As time passed the man noticed that things in his house were different. He and Jesus did not talk as much as they once did.

After some time had passed, Jesus asked the man again about letting Him in to the room in the back so that He could clean it out and make it clean and beautiful like the rest of the house. Once again, the man told Jesus, ” You can have any room in this house except for that one; it belongs to me.”

One day, the man came home from work and Jesus was no longer in the house. When the man asked Jesus why he had moved out, Jesus told him that He could not live in the house with that foul-smelling room in it. Jesus told the man that he needed to let him in to clean out the room in order for there to be fellowship between the two again.

The man knew just what was in that back room that he kept locked up for himself, but he missed the fellowship that he once had with Jesus. He missed the way that his house felt when he let Jesus come in and take control of each room.

With shameful tears in his eyes, the man handed the keys over to Jesus. He told Jesus what He would find in the room. The man told Jesus that he was sorry for keeping it locked away from Him for so long.

With love in His eyes, Jesus looked at the man and said, “My child, I know what is in that room. That is why I want to clean it our for you. I can turn that foul, dirty room into something beautiful again.”

Hand-in-hand Jesus and the man returned to the house. The man walked to the back room, unlocked the door and allowed Jesus to go in. Jesus began to clean the room out. He threw away all the things that were foul and unclean, he filled the room with His light, and He turned it into the most beautiful room in the house.

What does your “House” look like? Does Jesus live there? Have you given Him the keys to every door, and asked Him to go in and clean up?

Jesus already knows what He is going to find. There is nothing too dark, nothing too nasty, and nothing too foul for Jesus to fix.

You see, just like our physical homes, our spiritual homes need to be worked on as well. As we allow Jesus to come in and clean out those dark, drab places, He will turn them into something beautiful!

I encourage you today, let Jesus into every part of your heart. Do not keep parts of it locked away for yourself. You see, Jesus can not dwell in a heart with sin. The Bible tells us:

“No man can serve two masters:”

Matthew 6:24a

Will you let Jesus in? Will you let Him come in and dwell in your house today?

I would love to hear from you. I would like to pray for you as well. You are always welcome to leave a comment here for me, or you can also send me an email.

God bless you today!