The world is going to end.
We have about 17 days, according to the Mayans. Libya can start a chemical warfare showdown and create a chain reaction of worldwide destruction by the end of the week. A meteor can slap the earth upside the head tonight, for all we know.
Or Jesus can come back soon. Most people find this improbable, which adds to the mystique and makes Christians all the more eager to see his imminent return ASAP.
With doom (or rescue) on the horizon, what are we supposed to do? My initial thoughts on a proper response involve buying a gun, or spending all my money on radioactive suits and Top Ramen. But King Solomon in Ecclesiastes has better ideas.
Most of us work to pay the bills — and we don’t make a whole lot more than that. The fruits of our labor, so to speak, are typically consumed over the course of a month, and the cycle renews at the end. But don’t be glum. It’s not as bad as it looks. Besides, Jesus didn’t die so we might live in misery, but in freedom through the joy of salvation.
God has given us a series of tasks that we should persist at, whatever is on the horizon:
1) Occupy yourself with God’s work. The times my integrity has sucked the most is when I’ve had the most “free time”. Most of you know the “idle hands” saying (which, by the way, is not in the Bible), and it’s true.
2) Keep a perspective of eternity. What matters on earth is usually a poor representation of what is significant in heaven. We should be looking for ways to please God, and then doing those things, assuring that what’s done on earth translates to eternity.
3) God is mysterious. Leave it like that. Humans spend a whole lot of money and whole lot of time trying to prove or disprove God. As long as God remains intangible, man will still find God fascinating. And that’s good.
4) Rejoice. The fact that you woke up this morning, that you got out of bed, that you’re even breathing, is a privilege. Be excited that you get to spend another day in His service.
5) Do good. Life is too short to be selfish. Do something for someone else for a change, expecting nothing in return. You don’t have to have tons money to bless someone — Facebook allows you to be encouraging instantaneously.
6) Enjoy your life. God calls this a “gift” — if we’re alive today, we are called to experience life for what it is. Too many people are TiVoing their life, skipping everything to get to the “good stuff”. Haven’t you seen It’s A Wonderful Life? It is wonderful, if you have the proper perspective.
As the remainder of the chapter describes, seasons vary, and particular times are tougher. But don’t let the end of the world ruin your life. Live it — it’s what God would like you to do.