I don't really know how to speak out about controversial topics. I don't really want to create discord where it really isn't necessary. I don't want to be hard headed, pounding words into anyone's head. So I won't. What I am wishing to discuss here is something that has greatly impacted my perspective on Christ's coming. Like the severity of what we must do to prepare. Not really for the salvation He has to offer (that we have already gained in acknowledging His gift and taking it), but for the trials we will face in those days. Those terrible days.
When I was a kid it was engrained into my heart the fear. The "end times" were threatening and luminous. I would have nightmares of fire in the streets, grabbing one thing from my house, and running into the night. As I got older I still had the fear, but none of us really talked about it all. I just figured it was because we didn't know how to handle the idea of it. Like what does one do with all this information? We don't even know how we will respond at that point. It was all rather hypothetical.
In the last couple of years I have had glimpses of what it will be like to have strength in those times. Not because I went through "end time event" like scenarios, but more like I experienced the strength that I picture going along with the faithful. Hmm... questionable right? Well, most of the time when I have thought about the "end time" I have felt it ALONE. My heart felt powerless thinking about it. I did not picture a community. I felt like I would be the only one struggling through to the end. What God ended up showing me, was an encouragement.
I am a part of an all women's Bible study group that meets every other Wednesday night. Before I moved away, I experienced the most powerful sense of community in that last meeting. We usually get real with each other, but this time was different. Our prayers together had matured from the first time I was with the group, or maybe it was just my own prayers in my heart. As I took in the moment with all of them for the last time, I felt a strength in numbers. I felt the Trinity. Not just Jesus, or God the Father, or the Holy Spirit. I felt every sense of the words together, community, not alone, family. I pictured the apostles of old in the book of Acts and how they supported one another. You know after Pentecost? I felt what Paul felt when He wrote to His brothers in Christ as he was imprisoned in his home.
For so long, I felt that following Christ was a lonely venture. Maybe it is because I have seen so many Christians walk the life alone. I am not sure if I am just blessed or if this is really how God wants it. It is so three dimensional! Walking the rode alone with God is definitely powerful. You have the chance to hash out real stuff with Him. You can trust His wisdom and power to protect. What I have found is that God wants more for me. He wants me to expand that relationship with Him. He wants me to invite others into the circle so that the "cord" of life is strengthened! Developing relationships with people outside of my family circle has greatly matured my trust in God as well.
I know that He will challenge my beliefs through the eyes of other faithful followers. He can reach out to me with an embrace by the hearts of those physically around me. He can show me what family is really about. God is community. So, with that being said, in those last days I know that I will look back on these experiences with a full heart. Even if all these women are not a part of my life at that time, I will remember that strength. It will fill my heart in prayer and help me face what may be ahead. I saw God in those moments, more than I ever would alone. Ultimately, He is my strength.