2 August 2018
What good is Christianity? What do we get out of it? How does it help in real life?
I remember a church in Nairobi, whose slogan was “We are a real church for real problems for real people. Are you struggling with life? Come to Jesus and know victory!”
God’s rescue of us through Jesus does not give us everything our heart desires. And just as well! Our heart, like the rest of us, is broken and sinful, and is not a good judge of what is worth having.
Thankfully, as part of our rescue, we are given new hearts with new desires. We start to want the things that God himself desires.
Think back to when you first believed. You turned to God sorry for your sins, sorry that you had lived offending God. Did you do that because you wanted God’s stuff, or because you wanted God himself, his forgiveness, acceptance and love?
Jesus said that real life was to know him and his Father God. (John 17:3)
In our rescue by Jesus, God gives us the privilege of being a part of what is close to his heart: to seek and save the lost. If God left us here with a bubble around us so nothing bad ever came our way, we could not relate to people around us, nor could they relate to us, and we would be unable to bring his good news to them.
To be useful for God, we have to stay in this broken world with all its problems.
But we are not here alone. We have God’s Spirit in us, so we will never face anything on our own again. We can ask God anything on our hearts, and listen to him in his word. And we can be loved by his people when we are in trouble, and love them in return when they have troubles.
God did not spare his own Son to rescue us, so of course he will generously give us all other good things. Nothing will be held back from us. Some of these good things we have now, but for some we have to be patient waiting for Jesus our hero to return.
But we are only in this broken world for a short time – a few decades at most. Then we spend eternity with God pouring his generosity over us each day. In 10,000 years, we will think we must have received every good thing God could give us. And the next day we will wake to new delights. The worst troubles we had in this world will seem nothing in comparison.
The best part of our life once Jesus returns is the best part of our life while we wait: we have God himself, and Jesus whom he sent to rescue us, as family, along with all God’s people.