Pastors Garage

*Pastor Mike’s Garage-Oct 13, 2023*

Has anyone out there watched the news this week at all? If not, you may
want to tune in. Now I get why someone would want to quit watching the news
in this day and age. There doesn’t seem to be a lot that’s worth watching
and even less that’s encouraging. Not to mention how one even wades through
the seemingly mountain of misinformation that we are bombarded with from
every angle. I have found myself wondering several times while watching the
news in recent years, what does anyone even believe anymore. It seems there
is so much propaganda and slant to how things are reported, let alone those
that intentionally try to deceive. And then let’s just throw in the fact
that we have a spiritual enemy whose sole intention is to steal, kill and
destroy! He absolutely loves to whisper lies and half truths in an effort
to push us into a perpetual state of anxiety and fear!

But if you have happened to have tuned in during the last week you may have
heard there is a war going on in the Middle-East. Now you may think, there
is always a war going on in the Middle-East! Well, I think this one might
just be a little different. It involves the country of Israel. Now if you,
like I, grew up immersed in church culture during the 70-90’s your mind
tends to snap to attention when things like this dominate the news. I can
still remember the many, many sermons, not to mention the left-behind books
and movies, focused on the events that the bible predicts will happen
world-wide surrounding what it describes as the end-times! War in Israel
was always central to these events. Now if you don’t put much thought and
weight into God, and what the bible says, at least let yourself wonder, why
does what happens in this little country so far away, in the middle of
nowhere, so dominate the world stage when something happens there? Why have
its people, time and time again, throughout history, been persecuted, and
ultimately sought to be eradicated by various forms of evil? Why is there
seemingly an apocalyptic, end of days belief system found within every
culture and mindset, whether you believe what the bible says or not? You
see it in so many movies, and hear about it in so many conversations!

Now I am in no way predicting, with any specific time frame, that this is
upon us, and what we are seeing throughout the world is a definite sign of
that. BUT, in light of what the bible does say to watch for as signs that
the end times are near, culminating in the return of Christ, there does
seem to be a lot of similarities to what we are seeing in the news these
days throughout the world! All I’m saying is if what we currently watch in
the news on a daily basis would have been in the news during that season of
the 70-90’s I would have been wigging out! I’m not saying it is, but it
sure looks like it might be!

So what is, or should be our response as Christians? Start living in total
fear and anxiety, wearing our tin foil hats? Maybe we should ignore it and
just hope it will just go away? Probably the best thing we could do is just
make sure we get the best and most out of what this vanishing world can
offer before it vanishes! Live for the moment, party hard, eat, drink and
be merry! I think all of these options are pretty scriptural, right? Well
to answer that question, no, they are not! None of these options of how we
could be acting are scriptural at all, but ironically they are exactly how
the bible describes how many Christians will act during that time!

So what should we be doing? There is a passage found in Luke 21 where Jesus
speaks about the future, namely the end-times. In verse 28 he says these
words, “So when all these things begin to happen, stand and look up, for
your salvation is near!” We need to be people that look up! Not down, not
around, not in the mirror, but up! What are our eyes fixed on? All week I
have been thinking we need to gather and just pray! We have much going on
around us, we have much to worry or be anxious about! We have much to
distract us! Where are your eyes focused right now? Look up! The church
will be open on Saturday night at 7 for anyone who wants to gather and
pray! No specific subject, no order, no service, no time limit, no-one in
charge! Just Christians gathered to look up! Come if you feel the need!

This Sunday someone will be joining us in our morning service at 10:30 from
the Teen Challenge women’s centre in Hague Sk to share the power and hope
that can be found in God in overcoming addiction. The service will be
followed by a potluck meal. Who knows, this might be the last potluck meal
you ever get before the world ends, you don’t want to miss out! That was
kind of a joke, but not really! How much do we have a sense of urgency in
living for what actually matters during the little time we have on this
earth? Start living for what matters today!

Pastor Mike