Called to Be Faithful in the Here and Now By J. STONESTREET & T. PADGETT for Break Point
So, whatever comes, great victories or the full evaporation of progress, our task is the same: faithfulness, not success.
Perhaps the strongest antidote for optimism or for misplaced faith in our fellow man is watching the news. Of course, much of the media we consume is voyeuristic, so in a sort of supply-and-demand scenario, bad news makes headlines more than good news. At the same time, this is more than a problem of clickbait filling our newsfeeds. A series of events in recent years suggests that our cultural center cannot hold much longer.
An Increasingly Fallen World
Not decades but just a few days ago, prominent novelist Salman Rushdie was stabbed, not in some “shady” part of the world, but in public at a lecture in upstate New York. Also, dogs in San Francisco are becoming hooked on meth. Apparently, human excrement is so common in public areas, pets have learned where to go for a quick high from the residue of addicted residents. Radical ideologies continue to dominate headlines, which few outside of ivory towers had heard of until a few years ago. They are now compulsory at some schools. And, those who challenge the new orthodoxy are often ostracized from what is an increasingly impolite society. Healthcare now involves practices that, until yesterday, would’ve rightly been considered abuse, including children having otherwise healthy organs turned inside out.
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Clearly, the state of our world is largely rotten. For some Christians, this indicates that the end is nigh. Particularly in the last century or so, many books and sermons have declared that we are living in the last days, so the best we can hope for is to go down fighting this increasingly fallen world.
The Calling Remains the Same
It’s easy to forget in all these headlines that things have been bad before, in some ways even worse than today. In that time and place, God called His people to keep the faith, commit to the tasks at hand, and steward the time they were given by remaining faithful. Sometimes they won against the forces of darkness and death. Sometimes they lost. Either way, their calling remained the same, and God’s Kingdom marched on.