In the Meantime…

05/12/2008

He said to me: "It is done. I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and
the End. To him who is thirsty I will give to drink without cost from the spring of the water of life.”
Revelation 21:6 (NIV)

Our Lord is the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End…and where does that leave us in this life? Somewhere on that long stretch of time in between A and Z…deciding what to do with our lives in the meantime. In the meantime is where things can get confusingly hard and life chews us up and spits us out, or where blessings are abundant and life is full—usually we live somewhere in between the two extremes.

"What am I doing in the meantime, Lord? Hoping, that's what I'm doing—hoping…” That’s taken from Psalm 39:7, in The Message Bible. How do we live in the meantime without this Hope? Not well, thank you, not well. When Hope is lost, even if it’s only for a short time…it’s a desperate time, a dangerous time, a devastating time in our lives. In the meantime can seem to be forever when Hope is gone and the circumstances we are facing seem insurmountable.

Our lives are one long “wait” for Heaven. As it says in 1 Peter, lives filled with “aggravation,” but the Day is coming when we’ll have it all—life healed and whole! Sometimes the waiting in life is easy, but many times it is very, very hard. The Lord started us out in this life, and the Lord will finish this life with us—and in the meantime we are to wait with our eyes focused on Heaven because when we do, we’ll be looking at what’s good, very good, and not what’s unbelievably hard, very hard. Life, it can slam us down hard emotionally, physically, spiritually when we least expect it! Life is not a game, it’s a war, and we’re in the midst of it.

Why doesn’t Jesus just rescue us out of what hurts the most? The answer to this is in Scripture in John 17:15 (NIV), “My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one.” We can know in the midst of our worst nightmares that the Lord is there, but we still live in a fallen world until Jesus comes back. The challenge comes while living “in” this world, to not be “of” this world. While we wait with Jesus through the aggravations of life, we must do so with our eyes focused on Heaven! It takes practice, and perseverance through the many things that must be endured along the way. When the things of life hit us, we can be plunged into a darkness that seems to have no way of escape—we can be taken so low it feels like we’ll never get up again. Through it all, Jesus is still there, but it can be such a temptation to take our eyes off of Jesus and put them on this world and the troubles that surround us. That’s when Hope can go M.I.A.—during the spiritual warfare that we cannot see, but we can certainly feel, our enemy, Satan, is trying his very best to demolish any Hope we have. He’s good at it too! As I’ve heard it said, “Satan’s been at this a lot longer than we have.”

If we can’t believe in anything or anyone else in the toughest moments of life, we have to believe that Jesus has overcome this world and take heart in the meantime. One day, the wait will be over and Jesus will return. On that day, we’ll SEE the wait was well worth it!