Tuesday, April 23, 2013

A Merciful Pathway

“Those who believe in Jesus Christ and are justified by faith and become the children of God are not taken out of this world of woe, but are given the grace to experience the very judgments of God on the human race as the merciful pathway to holiness and heaven rather than sin and hell.”---John Piper

One doesn’t have to look farther than the recent earthquake in China (188 dead, 11,000 injured at last count) to confirm that we live in a world of woe. The sane reaction is to groan, to pray and to give if possible to relief. The other reaction is of course to ignore it and go on living. How we react to tragedy mirrors what is going on inside of us and which highway we are on.

On a smaller scale we deal with those around us that wrestle with significant physical suffering. Certainly we can not understand all the components of the suffering nor fully identify with the ones that suffer. Our challenge is to give of ourselves in ways that feel like death to us that others may live life a little more.

In our day to day dealings with the manifestations of fallenness in others and the brokenness of daily living choosing right responses is incumbent upon us as children of light. There will be many that will take the easy way and respond in kind to unkindness or throw up fist or finger when their cheek is slapped. Travelers on the road to holiness and heaven call on heaven’s strength to respond differently.

The world is a place of woe which we see manifest in so many forms. The saving grace is to remember that we are citizens of heaven. Holiness of heart and character are our goal. Knowing which path we are on will help us know how our heart and hands will respond to this groaning broken place we currently call home.

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