For months, if not years, most all of the people that I know that have a deep walk with the Lord have been speaking of the urgency of the hour in which we live. For years, the decline of all that is around us seems to brand this generation as a likely candidate to be the last. I’m not speaking of some over-hyped apocalyptic “bring on the wrath of God!” type movement. I’m talking about simply watching events unfold and then listening to what the Spirit is saying. Without question, the frequency and magnitude of catastrophic events are on the rise. The recent cyclone in Myanmar and the earthquake just yesterday in China are immediate reminders of what is not to come, but is already here. As I watch slideshows online displaying photo after photo of the destruction and devastation, I sit amazed at how fragile we, the human race really are. We convince ourselves that we are impenetrable and that we are somehow in control, but the reality is, we are neither.
We see the tragedies that unfold in third world countries and somehow see them as different. I say their despair and lack is no different really, it’s just that ours (Northern America) is in a different form. Africa and Asia, in many areas, have little food and water and people are starving. Here in the US we are over-saturated with greed and wealth and are gorging ourselves to death on everything we can get our hands on. I ask you, at the heart of it all, which is worse? I say the outcome is the same, we just take different roads to get there.
As I read about the current tragedies abroad, it seems that the US sees herself as immune. How do we so quickly forget 9/11 and hurricane Katrina? As hoards of people run to theatres to see blockbuster movies and buy up video games by the millions, a great calamity is coming. Even now, wildfires rage across the US, “normal” US citizens are beheading one another and calling it “sport”, tornadoes level entire towns and our neighbors torture their own families caged in their cellar. Do we really believe that we are fine? Is the world, and even the majority of the church, so ignorant as to think that we’re just coasting through this life doing whatever we desire with no consequence? Even the elaborate buildings on every corner, built in the name of God are tabernacles set up to glorify our flesh and God is not pleased - in fact He sees them as detestable.
The reality is this, Jesus is coming for His Bride and God will not tolerate the world's seeking after false gods much longer. To get a bit more specific, as I browsed through the hundreds of pictures of Myanmar and China in particular, one thing stood out to me. Picture after picture showed buddhist temples in ruins. Many were knocked off of their foundations and idols were leaning, covered in debris. To me, this spoke so clearly – God will surely shake all that can be shaken. Read Mark chapter 13, Jesus Himself says to “take heed; behold, I have told you everything in advance”. He speaks of wars, famines and earthquakes being the beginning of birth pangs (Greek: pain, sorrow, travail). The reality is God alone is Lord and no other. All other gods will be laid low and brought to ruin, whether they be in the tangible form of graven images or in the temples set up in the hearts of men.
Perhaps your life is seemingly rosy and bright, as is mine. You have no real pressing concerns, bills are paid, you’re in good health and life is good. I tell you, we must stay alert and awake in this hour! We must be found diligently seeking His face and continue to cut all ties to this world. In Him alone we must put our trust and future. Don’t be lulled into believing the lie that all is well and Jesus’ return is not imminent. Watch, pray - don’t be found intoxicated by the ways of men. Take on the responsibility to hear for yourself what the Spirit is saying in this hour. As sure as the sun rises and sets, it is coming – prepare now for the Bridegroom.