Suddenly’s of Life By Pastor Joe
Suddenly’s of Life By Pastor Joe
It was not the best text message to receive last Friday from one of the members saying there had been a tragic death at Poplar Hardware. Obviously it immediately made me think of members of our congregation who shop and know the staff at this local business. I had just been in the store the day before and purchased some auto parts. Selfishly I was excited about the new Carquest Auto parts store inside the hardware store that just opened as a new benefit to our local communities. Matt was such a helpful resource, and he would always ask how he could help. He had been the manager of the store for a couple of years. Yet it was a “suddenly” which captivated this moment in many of our lives and there will be multiple suddenly‘s which we will have to deal with. Sometimes it’s a “suddenly” with great excitement attached to it and other times it’s a “suddenly” filled with sadness and sorrow. I can remember times when people have stopped by “suddenly” who were just passing through and those were wonderful experiences. Then there’s the times when you receive a call and it’s because someone has been seriously injured or someone is possibly in a very difficult situation and those suddenly’s are never desired. I have to believe most people feel the same way about these suddenly events. It makes me think of how important it is for us to be prepared for the suddenly’s in life. Our walk with Christ will definitely help us deal with the suddenly‘s of life whether they are positive or negative. Your Holy Spirit led life will help carry you through each and every situation. We should be prepared for anything that comes our way, whether it brings a smile to our countenance or sorrow to our heart. We should never look at suddenly’s as a sign that God is not watching over us. I think just the opposite. God wants to be ever present, very near to us because there are suddenly’s in life. Throughout the scripture we find multiple occasions of “suddenly’s” which require the peace, the presence and the power of the Lord Jesus. There are multiple stories in the New Testament where Jesus himself is relating to someone who “suddenly” has come for his help, for his aid, for his comfort, for his healing. Think of the woman with the alabaster box, the woman with the issue of blood, the centurion who sent his aide and the list goes on. The suddenly which really captures my attention is the one we are all hoping to experience. Let’s look at the verse and then discuss its impact for us today.
“Behold! I tell you a mystery. We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed, in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed.” 1 Corinthians 15:51-52 ESV. This is a suddenly which none of us want to be caught off guard when it happens, especially if it happens in our lifetime!
This is the most important “suddenly” any of us will ever face. We all believe and rejoice in the “Blessed Hope,” the eminent return of the Lord Jesus. He (Jesus) could come back any day and it will truly be suddenly. One of my greatest responsibilities as a preacher of the gospel is to keep the local congregation mindful of Christ’s soon return. But it extends to those who we reach out to on a regular basis; the lost must be informed of what the Scriptures say concerning mankind‘s existence. Let us never forget, and let us be motivated by the fact that God’s grace has a finite end. The suddenly many of us experienced last week was very sobering, but it is nothing in comparison to the suddenly many will face when the scripture we quoted becomes reality. Each day brings us one day closer to the return of the Lord Jesus and the most magnificent suddenly which will ever take place and we want everyone to be ready.