We are going to enter a New Year. 2012 was eventful, sometimes terrifying. There were unprecedented incidents of violence, and corruption. There are elaborate arrangements in various parts of the world to mark this occasion. Every new day brings us closer to eternity. Either Lord’s coming is getting ahead by a day or our death. Therefore, it is essential to anticipate the future with serenity. This is possible, only by rescheduling our lives according to the three principles in the following text: “Be dressed ready for service and keep your lamps burning, like servants waiting for their master to return from a wedding banquet, so that when he comes and knocks they can immediately open the door for him. It will be good for those servants whose master finds them watching when he comes. Truly I tell you, he will dress himself to serve, will have them recline at the table and will come and wait on them. It will be good for those servants whose master finds them ready, even if he comes in the middle of the night or toward daybreak. But understand this: If the owner of the house had known at what hour the thief was coming, he would not have let his house be broken into. You also must be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him.” Peter asked, “Lord, are you telling this parable to us, or to everyone?” The Lord answered, “Who then is the faithful and wise manager, whom the master puts in charge of his servants to give them their food allowance at the proper time? It will be good for that servant whom the master finds doing so when he returns. (Luke 12: 38-43) The three salient principles are Waiting, Watching and Working. Those who are familiar with Internet can understand the significance of WWW- World Wide Web. .
1.1 Waiting is not wasting:
In Christian life, waiting is an essential part. Waiting is definitely a boring and frustrating experience. In India, we learn this art by waiting on long queues for taking transports, buying gas and other essential commodities and even to caste out votes during elections. Waiting is not wastage of time because we are doing that with a definite purpose. The waiting time could be profitably spent provided we learn from this experience. Nevertheless, waiting without hope is wastage. A waiter in the hotel is not wasting his time but working.
1.2 Waiting is not worrying:
Some Christians continue to worry while waiting. When worry dominates, a person’s life it signifies that hope has been replaced or displaced. Worrying is also expression of unbelief. Worry always pertains to future. We should always remember that we worship the Lord who is the Lord of the future. In addition, worrying is unnecessary exercise that brings no profit to our personal life. Instead, unwarranted worry makes us collapse with stress, hyper tension and even heart attack.
1.3 Waiting is not wandering:
When Lord wants us to wait like Elijah by the brook of Kerith (I Kings 17; 3), we prefer to wander searching for food. God has His own agents like ravens to feed us. Wandering is to solve our own problems and a not letting God to do it. Waiting is complete trust in God with anticipation and expectation. “Those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. By waiting we are strengthened and renewed “(Is 40:31).
2.1 Watching is waking:
Crane is a bird that waits patiently for the fish to pass by. However, it is also alert and awake to catch the fish. A Christian has to be awake to realities, situations and possibilities. This means no postponement; no negligence; no lethargy. William Barclay writes, “One of the most dangerous days in a man’s life is when he discovers the word ‘tomorrow’. “Wake up O sleeper, rise; from the dead and Christ will shine on you.” (Eph 5:14). Blessed are those who are awake, alert and agile. (Rev 16:15).
2.2 Watching is walking:
A person who has hope in His coming purifies himself (I John 3:3) A Christian has to reflect his hope of Christ’s return by a Holy walk. Christians should walk by faith, in love and in light. “We want each of you to show this same diligence to the very end, in order to make your hope sure.” (Heb 6:11) Diligence and consistency should be our style of walking. Paul writes in the Epistle to Ephesians that we should walk worthy of our calling, in love, in light, careful and redeeming the time.
2.3 Watching is warning:
God has made us a watchman to warn people. “Son of man, I have made you a watchman for the people of Israel; so hear the word I speak and give them warning from me. (Ezekiel 3:17). We are called to warn the people around us about the coming Judgment. Christ came two thousand years ago to be the Saviour of mankind. Again, He is coming to judge the world.
3.1 Working is worshipping:
Christians are called to worship the Lord in truth and in spirit (John 4: 23). Christian community is a worshipping community. The attitude of worship should shape our thinking, words and behaviour. So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God. (II Cor 10:31) That means, our very life style becomes worship.
3.2 Working is witnessing:
Christians are called to be witnesses. But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth.” (Acts 1:8) We are witnesses for the glory, power and grace of God. We ought to witness the Gospel of the kingdom to the last person on the globe.
3.3 Working is doing will of God:
John Wesley was questioned about his schedule if the Lord was to come the following week. It is reported that he took his diary and read out his schedule and said that this shall be my schedule. He knew that he was doing God’s will and need not reschedule even if he knows the time of His coming. If we do His will at all times there is no need to be panic.
Challenge to be a Winner
One who waits watches and works is the true winner. In 2013, we could be winners if we follow these three principles. Christians need not be afraid of the future. As we are waiting for His Glorious coming; watching and warning people around us; and working diligently doing His will.