DayBreaks for 10/03/14 – It’s How It Ends
I doubt that there is a believer alive who is not concerned about the eternal destiny of some close friend or relative. I don’t think that we should ever be apologetic about that. It is right that we are concerned about them. Love is a powerful motivator and it can lead us to share Christ with those we love and by so doing eternity can be changed! But it sure can be painful and cause many sleepless nights.
The great wit, C. S. Lewis, started out a doubter. He saw British Christianity as a pale and bloodless business. It did not excite him. In fact, to his reasoned, calculating way of thinking, Christianity made very little sense. It smelled of superstition and made promises about the future he was sure it could not make good on.
But C. S. Lewis came to see that he was missing something. He began to slide into a cynicism about life that frightened him. He wanted something to believe in. Someone who was on the Christian pilgrimage helped him to see that there was room for him in the parade. Not suddenly, but rather quietly, un-spectacularly, Lewis came into the Christian camp. We know the rest of the story: He became a great intellectual apologist for Christianity, writing and speaking to confound the critics of the Faith. He was the reverse of Ralph Vaughan Williams, taking on the critics of the Christian faith in Britain in a series of radio broadcasts which became enormously popular among a population growing steadily more indifferent to Christ.
A similar story can be told of Malcolm Muggeridge, a British thinker who in later life came to see that the Christian faith made far more sense to him than clinging to agnosticism. He, like Lewis, became an apologist for Christianity. He said “yes” to the invitation, after he first had said “no.”
It isn’t how the journey starts that counts. It’s how it ends that matters. The distance between those two points is one that no human can predict. The heartfelt agony of watching a loved one who once knew and professed faith but who appears to have rejected it is incredibly painful. In the middle of their journey (and ours!) let us not lose heart. God loves to swoop in at the last moment and snatch victory from the jaws of defeat – some might even say it is His specialty. If there is a way into the heart of your loved one, God can find it.
As a movie put it: “Everything will be okay in the end, and if it’s not okay yet, then it isn’t the end.” Hang on to your prayers. Hang on to your faith that God can, and will, do something incredible in response to those prayers. Though the road may be very hard and difficult, though a life may be horribly misspent, it isn’t over until it is over. Never give up on anyone! Just ask the thief on the cross!
PRAYER: Lord, we all have those we love who either have wandered from You or who don’t know You at all yet. Hear our pleas for their souls! Precious Father, You created them and love them more than we do and You want them to be saved even more than we do! Melt the hearts of stone that the Light may win the day in the end! In Jesus’ name, Amen.
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