So far we’ve established that many of us are numb, and that we desperately need to feel again, but a question remains. Why is this so important?
Joel 2:13 says, “Rend your heart and not your garments.” Rend means to tear apart or cause distress. In this verse, the Lord is forewarning the people of Judah that locusts will come and destroy their crops. Typically, in a situation like this, the people of Judah would tear their clothes to express their anguish. In this situation, however, the Lord wanted them to feel this calamity on a deeper level. The people of Judah were caught in sin, and the Lord wanted them to wake up and feel the weight of their actions.
In the same way, God’s desire is for us to wake up! In the book of Ephesians it says, “Wake up, O sleeper, rise from the dead, and Christ will shine on you.” (Ephesians 5:14.) God calls us out of a self-seeking lifestyle into an awareness of the needs of others. (Philippians 2:3 – Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility consider others better than yourselves.) He calls us to share in the suffering of our fellow man. (Romans 15:30 – I urge you, brothers, by our Lord Jesus Christ and by the love of the Spirit, to join me in my struggle by praying to God for me.) God calls us to take a stand and to avoid being lukewarm. (Revelation 5:15-16 – I know your deeds, that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either one or the other! So, because you are lukewarm – neither hot nor cold – I am about to spit you out of my mouth.)
Waking up is uncomfortable. It’s never the easy choice. Many people choose to remain numb because awareness is just too messy. But sleeping people will never be able to change the world. I believe that the first step towards bringing the Kingdom of God to earth is waking up. So who’s with me?
Come back tomorrow for Part 4!