Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever. (Hebrews 13:8)
Charlottesville, Virginia – 1 dead and 19 injured as a car sped into a crowd, illustrating a nation torn apart by ethnic differences. Houston Texas – inundated with over 40-50 inches of rain. At least 70 dead, and thousands of people facing a serious threat. What is going on?
We live in a world that is full of sin and evil. We live in a world that is not always safe, where things happen that we cannot account for, where we cannot guarantee the safety of our loved ones.
Dear friends, we have hope in Jesus Christ. When disaster strikes, when violence occurs, Jesus is our hope. When the diagnosis is bad, when the family becomes estranged, when financial crises occur, Jesus is our strength.
We are not alone. God has connected us to Himself in the Lord Jesus Christ. Jesus was born into a minority ethnic group that was under the iron fist of the Roman empire. He was born under circumstances that seemed questionable to friends and family. He was poor all the days of His earthly ministry, and relied on the help and support of others. He was misunderstood. He was maligned and abused by leaders in the church of the day and tortured and executed by a corrupt government official.
Because God has connected to us, we don’t have to face the uncertainties of the future alone. But there is more. All of the ethnic tension, all of the violence, all of the natural disasters show us how necessary the Church, the Body of Christ, actually is.
Jesus works through His people to send aid to those who are suffering because of natural disasters. (You can make a donation to help people in Texas at https://www.lcms.org/disaster-response). Jesus works through His people to teach, carry out, and live a message of reconciliation between peoples of different language, skin color, and cultures. Remember, Jesus is Jewish, and He died and rose for Jews, Romans, and Gentiles (like most of us) to bring us together in Him! He leads us to love people of all kinds of cultural and ethnic backgrounds.
So as we face an uncertain future, we have an urgent and extremely important calling to fulfill. We carry the hope of Jesus Christ, who is the same yesterday, today, and forever. We carry the message of the Gospel, the Good News of a God who is for us, who forgives our sins and gives eternal life. This is a message that is for people of every ethnic background, a message that people facing disaster and death desperately need, and a message that you and I can share every day.
Keep your eyes open, and be ready to share the hope and life of Jesus. Invite someone to worship with you!