Romans 8:35--Who can separate us from the love of Christ? Can affliction or anguish or persecution or famine or nakedness or danger or sword?
Every person will experience “the day after.” There is no place on earth immune to trouble. This day is a time for introspection. If we choose not to examine what we don’t understand or fail to assess what we have felt and experienced, then we are hardly better than robots. Introspection is not afraid to challenge the obvious or embrace the illusive. If done honestly, it leads us to a position of insufficiency and honors the value of questions.
Disasters swirl our emotions and may often leave us bewildered. On the day after, tragic memories rock our views toward God. The proliferation of suffering eats at the notion there might be a caring Creator. But if God is only the creation of an insecure humanity, or exists but is uncaring, then what purpose is there in life? Why settle for a purposeless life and refuse to give a purposeful God a chance just because the sin caused by our rebellion—exists? Would a just and holy Creator condone evil, or would He instead provide the grace to overcome it? Why would He give us the freedom of choice knowing we would repeatedly break His heart unless He truly sought our heartfelt love? Is it possible that pain results in deeper questions?
Peter was a devoted follower of Jesus. His life was so changed by the Messiah that history records he died for his faith on an upside down cross. Peter understood and proclaimed God’s simple and wise plan for saving humanity. “Repent,” Peter said to them, “and be baptized, each of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins, and you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit” (Acts 2:38).
Saul, a Jesus-hater, was so profoundly changed after personally encountering Him that He too became a follower. He wrote “ If you confess with your mouth,“Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved” (Romans 10:9). He noted that salvation is a forever gift (Rom.6:23). In the face of unbelievable catastrophes and personal suffering, he discovered the credible power of an incredible Savior. Like Peter, he was martyred for his faith.
On the day after can we afford not to ask the most important questions? Dare we ignore our mortality? Do we believe the unique and required plan of God for achieving His grace? When suffering comes how will we cope? We have the opportunity to evaluate our own condition and the gift of life God offers. Right now we have the privilege to decide. The next day after may be too late!
Introspection is right because it is the only way we shall discover that we need God. Introspection without God leads to insanity.—Oswald Chambers inThe Servant As His Lord
©2002 Daniel York ARR. Reveration is the weekly devotional ministry of First Cause. If you would like to receive these devotionals go to www.firstcause.org and click on the “Click here to receive weekly devotionals” box. Unlimited permission to copy this devotional without altering text or profiteering is allowed subject to inclusion of this copyright notice.
Ecclesiastes 12:10-The Teacher sought to find delightful sayings and to accurately write words of truth. (Holman CSB)