Life is always moving forward. It has been ever since Adam and Eve were created and started the whole life in motion for human beings. It has not slowed down yet. It does not wait for anyone. The sun might have stood still in Joshua’s time, but time did not stop.
The journey and the search for reconciliation seems unattainable.
Church leaders have been called to take this journey.
So, when we think of life in this way, we play a part in the whole movement in life. As it marches on, we fall in step with it somewhere along the way. Life’s journey as a whole has been on the move already.
So, our journeys in life are but a span. Added to that, our life’s journey is filled with ups and downs.
Luke writes a brief story of Stephen’s short journey in life in Acts.
Stephen steps into the Christian journey with enthusiasm for a new way of life. When he is seized for his stance regarding the gospel, he is stoned to death for what he believed. It seems like a great beginning, but with tragic results according to human accounts. For Stephen it was a victory.
The Apostle Paul then comes on the scene in Acts 9.
“Meanwhile, Saul was still breathing out murderous threats against the Lord’s disciples. He went to the high priest and asked him for letters to the synagogues in Damascus, so that if he found any there who belonged to the Way, whether men or women, he might take them as prisoners to Jerusalem. As he neared Damascus on his journey, suddenly a light from heaven flashed around him. He fell to the ground and heard a voice say to him, “Saul, Saul, why do you persecute me?”
“Who are you, Lord?” Saul asked. “I am Jesus, whom you are persecuting,” he replied. “Now get up and go into the city, and you will be told what you must do.”
The men traveling with Saul stood there speechless; they heard the sound but did not see anyone. Saul got up from the ground, but when he opened his eyes he could see nothing. So they led him by the hand into Damascus. For three days he was blind, and did not eat or drink anything.
In Damascus there was a disciple named Ananias. The Lord called to him in a vision, “Ananias!” “Yes, Lord,” he answered.”
(Acts 9:1–10 NIV11)
He comes on the scene as a ruthless man at the stoning of Stephen. His journey began, as recorded, in the progression of the story that broadens the gospel story. It begins with a terrible beginning. He then falls in step with his journey in life as a Christian. We also read of his life that is filled with ups and downs. Just like Stephen, he also faced opposition. The journey for him was not rosy either, but the rewards were bountiful. Eventually, for Paul, he died for his faith as well.
These two men of God fell in step in the journey and saw good times and bad times for their faith and for what they believed.
This leads us to today. We have also fallen in step in the journey with many other believers; into a story about the good news of reconciliation started by the Lord Jesus Christ.
Many of our Christian brothers and sisters of different colors have stood for Jesus Christ, and have been ridiculed for what is right. We also face ridicule for our stance in addressing racism and being ministers of reconciliation.
Oh, the journey is not done yet, but we still march to the beat of God’s calling. We may not see complete reconciliation in our life’s journey. But the reward is that we have begun to see it unfold.
What then is our hope in all of this? The institutions have failed uniting the people. We may not see a completely united people in this world. But we continue to stand for what is right. We then must not stop trying, but to keep, keep marching on. Why then must we march on?
Revelations 22:1-5 gives us the hope of being removed from the curse of division among other things and that we become new in reigning with Christ. A blessed hope, I should say, of having to be around the throne of the one who saved us and will save us in generations to come. Then the journey will be complete. Praise Lord.
“Then the angel showed me the river of the water of life, as clear as crystal, flowing from the throne of God and of the Lamb down the middle of the great street of the city. On each side of the river stood the tree of life, bearing twelve crops of fruit, yielding its fruit every month. And the leaves of the tree are for the healing of the nations. No longer will there be any curse. The throne of God and of the Lamb will be in the city, and his servants will serve him. They will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads. There will be no more night. They will not need the light of a lamp or the light of the sun, for the Lord God will give them light. And they will reign for ever and ever.”
(Revelation 22:1–5 NIV11-GK)
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