He left his wife for another person
How often have we seen this headline or something similar?
Immediately we are reminded of the unfortunate cases of broken marriages and ruffled homes.
However, this time I am not talking about someone leaving his wife for another woman but another man.
Did I hear you gasp in horror? Don?t be disturbed; the Man he left his wife for was Jesus.
On the 5th of February 2002 a beloved brother, pastor and husband was fatally shot during the crossfire between Police and robbers. Only heaven knows why it was allowed to happen. Only heaven can console the wife and three children he leaves behind.
Tragedy is not uncommon to those of us living on planet earth. It is an occupational hazard of living on earth. We all, at one time or another, get to know people who are taken away by death in the prime of their life. Yet many of us live as if this short time on earth is going to last for eternity. The Psalmist said
12 So teach us to number our days, that we may apply our hearts unto wisdom. Ps 90:12 KJV
Why do bad things happen to good people?
This is the age-old question that started with Abel (Genesis 4). His brother who was motivated by anger murdered Abel, a righteous man. What tragedy, what horror and sadness beyond words Adam and Eve must have felt.
Yes, we often forget about Adam and Eve when we talk about the murder of Abel. Any parent would find it too painful even to think of the despair, unbelief, sadness, terror and sheer horror of having one of their children kill another!!!
The answer is this - the things we do not understand we cannot do anything about. The things we do understand we can and should do something about.
What are you doing with your life? Abel?s name is found in the testimonial of those who were faithful. Hebrews 11 has the complete list. Doing what is right is the only thing God will reward us for when we eventually meet Him. It is not the size of your bank account, ministry or secular achievements that God is interested in but the size of your heart. How faithful are you to Him?
Let me round this up with 5 very specific things that untimely death should remind us of
- Remember those that grieve and are sorrowful. Let?s pray for them and where appropriate, give them the comfort of our presence. The things they are going through can often not be expressed in words.
- Have you lost someone precious to you? God knows exactly what we are going through in times of tragedy. He also has the experience of loosing a son. His grace is sufficient to take you through the rest of your life.
- Our actions always have consequences on other people. The things we do travel like waves, turning up on the shores of other people?s life?s far away. Our failure to pray when the Holy Spirit prompts us to and our insistence in getting involved in grand projects that are clearly outside the will of God for our life are all examples of actions that can negatively affect us and other people. Cain and Saul (1 Samuel 13) are two biblical examples.
- Get your priorities right. The majority of us are called to work in secular jobs and contribute physically and spiritually to the welfare of the human race. However, many of us like Adam, find ourselves hiding behind the trees of the garden from the presence of God. In other words, the very thing God has given us for pleasure has now become a hindrance to our serving Him. Get your priorities right.
Pride and arrogance are as bad as sin. Never get so swelled up with your success in ministry that you lose a heart for the people. Stay with what God has called you to do and never despise another persons calling. No matter how insignificant you think it is. Nor should you despise yourself.
- Remember this life is for a short time. Ask the Lord to teach you how to number your days. And even more importantly,remember death is not the end.
One day we shall all leave to meet the Lord. By God?s grace it shall not be before our time.
Shall we pray?
Lord Jesus, I thank you for the gift of life. And even more I thank you for the gift of your son. I remember those that are grieving at this time, sorrowing in the loss of someone precious to them. Jesus, there are several things we do not understand but this we do - you are a good God.
Give us the grace to abide in your presence and walk in your footsteps. Let the consequences of sin be more real to us than the luring deception and fleeting pleasures of wallowing in it. We put our hands in yours Lord as you lead us along.