This morning, I came across a verse that carried a serious challenge. Paul wrote “So be on your guard, not asleep like the others. Stay alert and be clearheaded” (I Thessalonians 5:6). This admonishment to stay spiritually awake and clearheaded applies to our personal faith and faith communities today more than ever
Paul had just warned the Thessalonians that the return of the Lord would come like a thief in the night. His return would take place in a moment when the members of a household were asleep in a sense of false security. Paul also said these events would happen at a time in history when people would say something similar to “All is well, there is nothing to see here. We have our peace. Leave us alone.” What made Paul’s words so impacting is the reality that all is not well, ever, until the end of time. Trusting in a false peace is a deceptive drug taken by those who no longer live alert and clearheaded.
To appear as one who trusts in God’s word and dares to think that all is not as well as some say it is, carries with it the potential for significant sacrifice. This sacrifice can take place in our relationships and acceptance in the culture. It can also sadly happen in our circles of fellowship.
As believers, we are sojourners from another Kingdom while we live here on Earth. The documentation of our heavenly passport and the word of God define who we are and how we are to live in this world when its demands of earthly citizenship contradict our higher allegiance. We should always speak with the accent of Heaven and carry with us the customs and lifestyle inherent with that citizenship. Without those distinctions, we will slowly fall into the slumber of compromise where we will succumb to ways of thinking we would have never thought possible when our faith was awake and clearheaded.
This is an updated edition of a post originally published on Garris Elkins