Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Hope in the Middle of the Not Yet

Lord Jesus--One of my friends is watching the current crisis in the financial markets and the mounting debt in Europe. He and I have been talking about the implications of the growing debt and the way in which everyone including the United States are in debt to China.  Our conversation often runs to the hope that you will return soon, Lord Jesus. I am sure that the present situation can not long endure. I find myself caught in the middle of the already and the not yet.

There is something just wrong with the money that comes from the efforts of under paid labor in China financing our national debt. The efforts of people who have so little is used to pay for our inability to manage our national budget? I know that there is little an average graying North Country person can do...but the questions run around in my mind. What would you say to us Lord Jesus? How do I live out your kingdom come with integrity and have hope living in my present tense?

In the middle of these thoughts there is irony laced through out. I am writing this on a computer that was made in china by slave labor? How can I know? The Ipad was invented by Apple and built in China. As I drive by bridges and public works project that were supposed to be shovel ready I wonder if a sign should be erected..."Built with american labor and Chinese yauns."  So are these thoughts of an aging baby boomer or are they the signs of the times? Where is the hope in the middle of the not yet?  

1 John 3
1 See how great a love the Father has bestowed on us, that we would be called children of God; and such we are. For this reason the world does not know us, because it did not know Him.

In the middle of the not yet, you remind me, that this world is not my home. Your love has changed me. That change is in so many ways incomplete and fractured...inconsistent at best. But the changes are given and accepted changes everything it touches.  It changes my mind, my heart and my emotions.

2 Beloved, now we are children of God, and it has not appeared as yet what we will be. We know that when He appears, we will be like Him, because we will see Him just as He is.

As much as I wish I was a finished product, that is not the way that I am supposed to be. I am never going to be finished with this stuff in the middle of this "not yet." This side of seeing you face to face Lord, I am always going to be in between.

In the mean time, can you show me how to live out a Kingdom life with integrity?

John knew you and and seen you a thousand times. As he wrote these lines, late in life, I wonder what picture was in his mind. Was it the Jesus that he had follow down the dusty road leaving his father's boat behind him? Or, was he thinking of the returning King in glory and power that he saw from Patmos?  The thought of you brought him to the place where hope was alive in his heart. We shall be like him...and we will not longer be not yet.

3 And everyone who has this hope fixed on Him purifies himself, just as He is pure.

In the mean time, I have to do the work of preparation and bring as much of your Kingdom come as you give me the strength to bring into being. 

Lord Jesus--Give me your strength and grace to work in the in-between.

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