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Let’s pray together: Lord, let our souls rise up to meet you as the day rises to meet the sun. Glory to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy Spirit. Father, we pray for Ghana, Netherlands, St. Lucia, Suriname, Jamaica and the church in these countries as well as the lost. We pray against and bind the forces of darkness Spirit, convict us when we listen to lies and help us to discern truth. May the peace of the Lord Christ go with us: wherever He may send us; may You guide us through the wilderness: protect us through the storm; may You bring us home rejoicing: at the wonders You have shown us; may You bring us home rejoicing once again into our doors. Amen Meditation ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” Revelation 21:4 Spoiler alert/confession time; I read the end of books that I find suspenseful. I will go to the last chapter and find out who lives, who dies, who gets married, who wins and how. I am not proud of this nor do I recommend it. I know I am an abomination to all serious bibliophiles. Why do I do it? Because I have no self-control; I will stay up all night reading under the covers, ignore my family, and abandon all reason and responsibility to see, “how it all ends”. By skipping ahead, I can slide the bookmark in and walk away. I am just as bad with movies. On YouTube there are video summaries with “Spoiler Alert” plastered across the title and I’m like, “Oh good, just what I was looking for.” I am impatient when it comes to my entertainment and I since I am not a purist, I can still enjoy the unfolding of the story even if I know how it ends, because I don’t know how that ending will come about. For us as Christians, the outcome of the universe is pretty much the same way; God wins, death dies, Satan is imprisoned, the faithful go to heaven, those who reject God get what they want…no God. The Bible is clear about all these things. The book of Revelation gives us some fantastical images to describe the indescribable; dragons, monsters, whores, zombie prophets, bloody moons, and cascading star showers. Then a great city descending, with the proportions of a giant cube (the Borg ship, but shinier?) No, these images are meant to be evocative not necessarily descriptive. The perfect cube of the New Jerusalem implies perfection, not actual structural dimensions. The dragons, time spans, and four horsemen are there to remind us that this will take time (How long? Don’t worry about it) and that this will be terrifying (How terrifying? Dragons and plagues terrifying) BUT do not lose hope because God will be victorious no matter how much it looks like He won’t be. The key is, “Do not lose hope!” not the nitty-gritty details. Do you remember how Jesus told the disciples multiple times, “I will be arrested, tried, and crucified then I will die, be buried, and after three days will rise again.” It doesn’t get any more specific than that however did that alter the disciple's fear or acts of cowardice? Nope. God generally does not give many details, rather He states what will happen, and then we have to live through the process to see how it happens; Abraham and Sarah=baby, David=king, Israel=return from exile, Zechariah and Elizabeth=baby John the Baptist. In none of those scenarios did God give a step by step, they had to trust and take God on faith. Death, the Final Judgment, and Heaven are the same way. We need to stop pressing our noses up against the glass trying to see around corners into the future or beyond the veil. What will happen? What will it look like? Who will be there? How long will it take? It’s not wrong to wonder, but believe me, if God thought it would be helpful to tell us…He would. It’s an unhealthy interest in these things that leads people to consult mediums, explore astrology, and mess with dark spirits. Why listen to those led by the enemy, when God has told us everything we need to know and I can guarantee you, sooner or later you’ll see for yourself. This is one story that we can be patient with because we KNOW how it’s going to end, you just have to live through your part. We can ask God to give us wisdom and peace if we are distressed about these things, we can even ask for a vision or a word of guidance, then we need to let what He has given us be enough. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. 4 ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’[b] or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.” Rev.21:3-4

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