We're Living On "Borrowed" Time

 

America is known as the home of the free world - the land of opportunity. Freedom is the quintessential American ideal, but many of us don't think too much about where this freedom comes from. We just know that we have it. However, in reality, our right to pursue happiness is simply a "loan," something we have been given for a certain period of time, the length of which is unknown to each of us.

THE BIG PICTURE

Whoever, and wherever we are, we are living on "borrowed" time. Something that is borrowed does not actually belong to us. We may claim ownership, and others may back up our claim, but when our time is "up," we will be powerless to hold on to it. The truth is, one day we will each be gone, and all of our possessions will be cashed in by someone else.

Of course, everyone knows this. We see it happen all of the time. we read about those whose time has come and gone every day in the newspaper. But there seems to be an unwritten rule which many people live by, which is to simply ignore this obvious fact.

Twenty-first century, politically-correct, anything-goes America seems to have accepted this fairy tale in place of reality. These days reality seems to be whatever you want it to be. It doesn't matter how wild it is, if you can dream it up you can probably find a dozen people who will support, or "like" your "right" to live your dream. And if you can package and sell it, someone will probably buy it. Consumerism, that's what its all about. We have relegated the virtues of responsibility and morality to the past, and as a result we now have the freedom to consume and pursue happiness at any and all costs.

But on September 11, 2001, America's fantasy world was invaded by a huge dose of "real" reality. We were temporarily awakened from our stupor. Instead of watching violence and terror on the silver screen, some of us experienced it firsthand, while the rest of us watched in horror as it happened.

And just as suddenly, something else occurred. America rediscovered religion. Personally I thank God for my country, and I am glad whenever anyone prays sincerely to God. But all of this talk about "God Bless America" confuses me a little. I have to ask, "where was all the prayer before Sept. 11th?

Yes, there are always people talking about praying, but how sincere are our prayers? In the Bible (I Kings 18), the prophet Elijah challenged the people of his day about their hypocrisy. The same could be said to modern-day America. Out of one side of our mouths we insist that we are free to do many things which are diametrically opposed to God's Word, and out of the other side we pray for God to save us from the terrorists. Let me be the ten-thousandth person (at least) to say publicly that the recent terrorist attacks were a wake-up call and a warning to this country from the God of heaven. The Hand of protection that has blessed us for so long was obviously lifted for a moment. But why is God warning us? He is simply telling us to change our ways and turn to Him. And we CANNOT expect His blessings to continue if we have no intention to change.

Jesus once told a story about a landowner who planted a vineyard, and then hired out some farmers to tend it for him. When harvest time came, he sent for his share of the crop. But the farmers either beat or killed the servants that were sent. At last the owner decided to send his own son, thinking they would respect him. Did they? No. Instead they killed the son so they could take over the whole vineyard. So Jesus asks the question. "When the owner comes, what will he do to those farmers?" What will he do, indeed!

We are like those farmers, and God is the owner. We are living on borrowed time, in a borrowed land. God owns it all. Everything we have is borrowed. And one day He will settle His accounts with us. Are you ready for that day? What have you done with that which has been allotted to you? Do you worship God and give Him thanks on a regular basis for all that He has given? And most important of all, have you accepted the greatest gift of all, the gift of eternal life that comes through believing and receiving His Son Jesus into your heart?

We are standing at a crossroads in time, and even though this nation looks to be far away from God in many ways, I believe in and serve a God of GREAT mercy and compassion. Though He has disciplined His people Israel many times, He has never failed to restore them when they have returned to Him. In fact, whenever any person, or nation, humbles themselves and repents, God is always ready to forgive, and heal, and restore. The key is not only hearing His call, but repenting "when" He calls.

It is the mercy of God that wakes up nations, and individuals. Although we cannot change our nation, we CAN choose to let God change us. By God's grace, and the power of the Holy Spirit, we can be transformed by faith in the shed blood of Jesus Christ. Today is your opportunity to experience this transformation. Today is your chance to give God the credit He so richly deserves. And when you accept Christ as your Savior, you won't have to worry about living on "borrowed" time any more, because Jesus has promised to always be near to those who trust Him, in this life AND forever!

If you would like to know Christ, please pray this prayer:

Heavenly Father - I am sorry for all the things I have done to dishonor You. But I thank You for sending Jesus to die for my sins. By faith in what Jesus did for me on the cross, I accept Your forgiveness and commit myself to follow Him as Your Holy Spirit gives me the strength. In Jesus' name, Amen.

If you prayed that prayer today, and meant it, your name is now written in heaven! In order to grow strong in your new faith:

>Find a group of faithful believers, or church, where you can begin to fellowship with others and learn more about the Lord

>Be baptized, which is an outward symbol, and a public confession of your faith in Christ (see Romans 10:9,10)

>Read God's Word

>Pray

"The earth is the Lord's, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it." Psalm 24:1

"-whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will save it." Luke 9:24

"- seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you." Matthew 6:33

"Those who know your name will trust in you, for you, Lord, have never forsaken those who seek you." Psalm 9:10

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