Thursday, December 22, 2011

an overwhelming number of names

I've been praying down a list of literally hundreds of names of unbelievers, put together by my church, from individual requests submitted by church members. The list is daunting... and soul-saddening... and gives me a more realistic picture of the vastness of the number of people that will be celebrating a holiday this weekend, created because of a Savior, whom they personally don't have a relationship with. 

I got to thinking about all the world "offers" in competition to the One that offers something so much sweeter. There exists plenty of "pretty" in this world today. But we would be challenged to find anything pure, holy, or perfect outside of Jesus Christ. Our society gives so many other alternate things to follow and strive towards... money, success, popularity, good looks, fame, or even just a sense of control of one's life. I completely understand how one of these could look more appealing. In fact, I can't say that I, as a believer, don't struggle towards these things myself. That struggle will always be there. However, I have hope in the something Greater that is fighting for me and helping me overcome those temptations.

It almost makes me mad - mad that the world could be so enticing. It scares me with my children. I understand why some parents are overprotective or try and keep their children in a little "bubble" their whole lives. I guess some might say I am doing that by having my daughter in a private, Christian school. I think there's a fine line, though. They have to be brought up and trained to honor and learn about God, but not completely oblivious to the world they live in. My husband and I are trying to do that, but my heart almost stops when I think about what they might choose instead of a relationship with Jesus.

"...the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour" (1 Peter 5:8). We are told to be self-controlled and alert. I am praying that those people on the prayer list, including my children, will have open eyes and an awareness of that prowling lion and that they will run to the open, safe arms of the Savior, Jesus Christ. May you too find that safe, saving relationship this Christmas season. Merry Christmas!

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