"O Lord, my strength and my stronghold, my refuge in the day of trouble, to You shall the nations come from the ends of the earth and say: 'Our fathers have inherited nothing but lies, worthless things in which there is no profit.'"
From the beginning God has had His eye on all the nations. He dealt primarily with His people, Israel, since He had chosen them both to reveal His Law and to bring the Savior to the World; but He never gave up on the rest of the nations.
He shapes History, raising up empires and removing them to prepare the way for the Gospel. He builds into every human culture, no matter how depraved and no matter how far from God they have fallen, clues that point back to Him and that become “handles” for the saving message of forgiveness in Jesus to take hold when it finally reaches them. He has put “eternity in their hearts,” so that there are always people looking for the way back to Him in every place.
As missionaries we learned to look for those clues hidden in the culture, in the folklore, in the traditions, that point people to Jesus. We learned to look for those people whose hearts had been awakened to the emptiness of life without God.
These same things are at work today even in our “western” world. As so many lose sight of God and the culture goes own way, there are people all around us who are looking for the way back to God. Don’t be frustrated by the many who have turned their back on God; look for the chosen ones whose hearts long for a real relationship with Him. And give them Jesus. There is no other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.
Lord, we pray for those around us who feel the emptiness in their hearts. Give us eyes that see, and ears that are alert to the clues to what’s going on in people’s’ hearts. Help us to listen as people speak, so that we know how to lead them back to You. Prepare the way by Your Holy Spirit so that people are ready to respond, and help us to be a faithful witness in Jesus’ name, Amen.
Pastor Dan Giles