Bible Reading: Luke 19:29-48
Life can change us. I’ve seen it happen, many times. It is obvious that God is working in someone’s life. And yet, they put it off. For some reason, or another, they are just “not ready”. Then stuff happens. It can be good stuff…it can be bad stuff. But after that…they’re just not the same. They’re just not as open to what God is doing in their life. Years pass by. Life passes by. And they never do make a decision for Christ. We need to respond the first time that we sense God at work in our life. Don’t put it off. You never know…it could be your last chance.
Thoughts about God for My Grandkids:
What is the risk of dying from a…
- car accident 1 in 90
- fire 1 in 250
- tornado 1 in 60,000
- lightning strike 1 in 350,000.
Lightning strikes the United States about 25 million times each year. The odds of a person being struck by lightning in the U.S. in any one year is 1 in 700,000. The odds of being struck in your entire lifetime is 1 in 3,000. About 10 percent of people who are struck by lightning are killed, and 70 percent suffer serious long-term effects. About 400 people survive lightning strikes in the U.S. each year and an average of 47 people are killed.
So, you aren’t going to believe this. Roy Sullivan holds the world record for being the person who has been struck the most by lightning. He worked as a US Park Ranger in the Shenandoah National Park in Virginia and between 1942 and 1977, Roy was struck by lightning on 7 different occasions and survived them all. The odds of one person being struck by lightning 7 times are 4.15 in 1031 (that’s 4.15 in 100,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000,000). How many chances does one man get in life? Well, obviously, Roy got his share and someone else’s, as well.
How many chances do you get. When you mess up, or fail…how many more chances do you get to…
- pass the driving test
- pass a test at school
- unlock your iPhone
- serve in tennis
- make a foul shot
- do what your Dad/Mom told you to do?
With almost everything we do in life…you only get so many chances. Then, it’s done, over, finished. No more chances. That’s pretty common knowledge and we understand it. But what about God? How many chances do we get with God? How many chances do we get to accept Jesus as our Savior…before it’s done, over, too late?
Did you know that Jesus had a close friend who died? His name was Lazarus. We don’t know why he died…but Jesus was out of town at the time and Lazarus’ sisters (Mary and Martha) sent for Him. When he got to their home there was a large crowd gathered. The Bible says that Mary and Martha, and other people, were “weeping” at the death of Lazarus. The word “weeping” means to “wail, to cry out in anguish”. We’re talking about crying out really loud, and shedding lots of tears, and at times having intense displays of emotions. However, when Jesus was told where the body of Lazarus was, it says that He “wept” (John 11:35). The word “wept” means to quietly shed a tear. Just a teardrop running down the cheek. Why the difference? Because the people thought that once Lazarus was dead…he was dead. It was all over. They would never see him, again. There was no second chance. But, Jesus knew that He was going to raise him from the dead. He was going to come back to life…and have another chance. So, while He “wept” at the thought of the death of His friend…He knew that it wasn’t the end of his story.
In the passage that we are reading today, the word “weep” is the same word as the first word that I explained. It means to “wail, to cry out in anguish and sorrow”. And here, it is speaking of what Jesus did. Jesus was coming to Jerusalem for the last and final time. In fact, He would never leave…because He would be crucified. Now, keep this in mind…when Jesus uses the word “Jerusalem”, here…He is speaking of all of the nation of Israel, in general. Kind of like how people use the word “Washington” to speak of all of America, in general.
Why did Jesus wail for Jerusalem? Because He knew that most of the people of Jerusalem (the nation of Israel) were not going to respond to His message. Oh, they had just recently cheered for Him as He entered the city. But within days, those cheers would turn into jeers, when they crucified Him. Then, to a large degree, for most of the Jewish people, there would be no second chance. It would be all over. The time would be past. But not only that, but Jesus also knew what lay ahead for Jerusalem…and, it broke His heart. You see, in less than 40 years (70 A.D.), the Romans would completely destroy the city of Jerusalem and kill thousands and thousands, of the Jews. So, here is what He knew that caused Him to wail, to have this deep sorrow over Jerusalem. First, most of the Jewish people would not accept Him as the Messiah, the Savior. And second, not too many years down the road…Jerusalem would be almost completely destroyed. God had sent Jesus to be their Savior and they had rejected Him…and before long the nation would be destroyed and the chance that it had to respond to God and to bring God glory would be gone, forever. Forever. Forever. No more chances. Jesus wept.
How many chances do we get…to respond to God? We don’t know. Stuff happens…and people change. At one point…they may be open to God and what He is doing in their life. Then, stuff happens…and now, they are too busy for God, or they’re not interested in God, or they’re angry with God…stuff happens. How many chances do we get…to respond to God?
What if this is your one chance? What if today is the one chance that God knows that you’re going to have…so He has spoken to your heart, today? What if this is your one chance? Don’t let it go by. Don’t let it pass. Whatever God is speaking to you about today…do it. Do what God says. Don’t waste this chance…it might be your only one.
Love you more than bunches and bunches,