Sunday

Are You Ready?


I used to think I didn't dream much. But I guess that's scientifically inaccurate. We all dream a lot, but some of us like me don't remember them. Now, my wife? She dreams in these Technicolor epics! I mean, I'm lucky if I remember a black and white short subject. Once in a while, though, I do remember a bad dream I've had. Not usually about monsters or murderers. I think you're going to laugh when I tell you about what a lot of my nightmares are about. Not being ready. Yeah, you know, stepping up to a microphone totally unprepared; having a huge audience waiting for me to speak in an auditorium and I'm backstage. They push me to go out. I'm being introduced. I have nothing ready to say.


(Continued In Comments)

1 comment:

Professor Howdy said...

I heard my pastor say the same thing actually. His nightmares are also about not being ready. He dreams that he's up there on a Sunday morning and there's no sermon. Some women have told me they have had nightmares about not being ready for a date. Others have told me about their nightmare about not being ready for a meeting of a board of directors where they have to give an important report.

You know what? If our dreams reflect our fears, then there must be this fear deep down inside of many of us that we won't be ready when an important moment comes.

Our word for today from the Word of God comes from the Old Testament prophet Amos. It's a pretty simple, straightforward sentence. Amos 4:12, "Prepare to meet your God." Now, if not being ready is nightmare stuff, then not being ready to meet God must be the ultimate nightmare. I mean, meeting Him is the surest date you have.

Hebrews 9:27 in the Bible says, "It is appointed to man once to die, and after this the judgment." The moment you take your last breath, there's God. Earth appointments? They can be postponed. They can be canceled, but God has this one in indelible ink in His calendar. The One who gave you your life is the One you will meet at the end of your life. The question the Bible raises is, "Are you prepared?" You say, "Well, yeah, I'm a good person." Unfortunately, that doesn't answer the question.

Romans 3:20 says this, no one will be justified by observing the law. "No one will be declared righteous in God's sight by observing the law." Not protestant good things, not Catholic good things, not Jewish good things. Unfortunately no one is ready to meet God as long as he or she is still carrying around sin.

You say, "Well, we've all got sin we're carrying around." Yes, that's what Romans 3:23 says in that same chapter. "All have sinned and fall short of the glory of God." If sin were something you could repay, maybe you could work it off with a lifetime of good deeds. But it's got to be removed! No matter how many times I keep the speed limit on our nearby Interstate, it doesn't erase the penalty I get for breaking the speed limit.

The penalty for sin is a death penalty; separation from God eternally. And it cannot be paid in good deeds. Somebody's got to die for a death penalty, and I deserve to. But the same place where it says "all of us have fallen short of the glory of God" says, "And we are justified (That means made right.) with God, freely by His grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus." Somebody did die for your sins and mine; the One who didn't deserve to. The only One who could-God's Son.

Now, how do you prepare to meet your God? Romans 3:25 says, "He was a sacrifice of atonement (that is to pay for your sin; to cover our sin) through faith in His blood." Faith in Jesus' dying for us. See, you open your heart to the One who paid your bill with God. "Lord, I put all my hope in Jesus Christ's work on the cross; my only hope that will bring me to You." Once you've told God that, then you're totally trusting in what Christ did and your nightmare is over. With your sins erased, you're ready.

If you say, "I'm not sure I am. How do I get started with this relationship with Jesus? How can I have my sins forgiven?" Would you go to our website? I'll do my best to help you find Him. It's ANewStory.com.

You've got an appointment with God. Are you ready? Going into eternity without Christ is the ultimate nightmare. If you're not sure, please don't risk another day without Jesus."

-Ron Hutchcraft

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