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Monday: A Certain Kind of Hope — 11 Comments

  1. I am sure that most of you have heard the expression, "They were so heavenly minded that they are no earthly use!" And in a secular world when we was Christians start talking about the hope that is within us to unchurched folk they are likely to get that impression, mainly because the language we use is meaningless to them.

    It is interesting to read he Gospels through in their entirety (You can read one of the Gospels right through on a wet Sabbath afternoon if you put your mind to it).They are a great mix of future hope and present living. The gospels are full of practical advice about living now so that we can give our neighbours and unchurched friends a foretaste of heaven.

    A recently widowed Adventist woman had had a lot of visitors offering sympathy and lots of words of wisdom about the hope we have and the state of the dead and so on until she was just plain weary from listening. She was somewhat surprised when a church member turned up at her place the day before the funeral and said, "Where is the lawnmower?" He then went to work and did the jobs around the house that had been overlooked in view of the recent events. Her world had been turned upside down by the loss of her husband but the practical ordinariness of the help offered by this church member at that time meant as much to her than all the words of comfort that she had received up till then.

    Our hope for the future must energise our living in the present. It is our living in the present as valued members of our community that makes our message about the future relevant. That is one reason that I take part in community-oriented healthy living projects like CHIP (Complete Health Improvement Program). Giving back healthy living to people in the community who have been struggling with their lifestyle health is giving them a bit of heaven now.

    I often see examples of such practical Christianity. in our community. They often go unnoticed because many who are involved in the work simply do it without shouting about it. Our hope should drive the "now"!

    • Bro Maurice, thank you for the above response. One Sabbath some years ago a group of us from the church I attended went to visit one of our member who was a nursing home resident. I will go out on a limb to say that every one heard the gurgling sound coming from our sister during the singing and bible readings. I kept thinking to myself, what are we doing? Here she was drowing on secretions while we were being heavenly minded. I just could not tolerate it after a while, so I suctioned her mouth of the tube feeding she was receiving. The elder who was asked to pray, was so angry with me for removing the secretions from her throat that she could not pray. She stayed upset the entire time we were there. This NH resident sister never had children, therefore we would be her only visitors, there would be no one to advocate for her care. I kept asking myself should we just go sing, read bible verses, pray, and leave her in that condition? Despite the anger of this elder, another sister and I repositioned her, and changed her dirty diaper. I have worked in a nursing home I know what happens to people who do not have family to visit and advocate. I also made a prediction that she would develop Pneumonia, which she did and died within a week. Calling staff to do their job makes them angry and even more reluctant. Since then, I make my visits alone, so I can do for people what may be offensive to members who think we should just sing and pray. Your response above absolved me of the nagging feeling that I did something wrong that Sabbath. I thank you for your practical responses to each SS lesson. God bless.

      • I didn't see it come. This is an eye opener. So, just singing and praying is not enough yet this is what majority of us been doing. Thank you for this comment. God bless you.

      • Amen! That is my story, when I lost my husband, there group of church members and neighbors who will just come and help in the house and this act was more comforting and encouraging to soldier no matter the loss, cause there is someone who cares. That is why it is said that you can visit a suffering person and just keep her or him company without even talking, and he will be okay and he will start opening up to you. Brethrens there is mkre power in actions than in just words. God bless you

  2. Matthew 24: 36-39
    Jesus said, no one knows the hour of the second coming.
    What should we do?
    1) Keep watch
    Be always on our guard and we will not be surprised at the coming of the Lord.
    The sign of his coming should motivate us for our personal preparation and the preparation of those around us.
    2) Be faithful and wise servant
    Matthew 10:16-23
    Be faithful like a sheep that would follow his master's command.
    Be wise as a serpent.
    Matthew 24
    10 At that time many will turn away from the faith and will betray and hate each other, 11 and many false prophets will appear and deceive many people.
    Faith will turn cold and people will turn against each other.

    3) Doing the command of God
    The Great Commission - Matthew 28:16-20

    James 1:22 22 Be doers of the word, and not hearers only. Otherwise, you are deceiving yourselves.

    Finally, the end cannot come until this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come.

  3. It is important to have programs for the help of those in need at church. But as individuals or as a family, we can have ministries of help too. There are so many people surrounding us that may be in need! Everyone can be engaged. The help that I myself can offer can certainly help me even more!

  4. When Jesus returns will he make the black man white?

    When I was young I used to think that being black was not good. I used to believe that white people were more blessed than white people.

    I used to see pictures of Christ and the angels and thought that they were white people and so to be like them is to be changed into a white man after resurrection.

    The curse of Ham also haunted me.I thought that I'm cursed and that I'm a slave. The slave trade was an evidence that this was true.

    The white colour made me think that they are righteous than me and that would make me kind of worship them.

    Today the kingdom of God is here and I'm in it being as black as I am and that how I'll remain if I make it to heaven.

    • Cyrus, our childhood perspectives are very interesting aren’t they? Being white, I always envied black preachers because I’ve always thought the black preachers preach better than white preachers.

      People speak of “white privilege” while all of my black friends here in Florida make a lot more money than I do, and have much nicer homes and cars than I do.

      We all enjoy different flavors of ice cream and sometimes we like it plain or sprinkled or in a banana split, but it’s all ice cream and we love all the varieties. Only one kind of ice cream would get old. I think God loves all the varieties of people.

      By the way You May notice I try to find an equal representation of black and white people in the artwork that goes with the posts I write for SSNET. I believe we all enjoy seeing people who resemble us, and that does not make us prejudiced or racist. We just like knowing there are other people like us.

      Jesus didn’t die to make us white or black. He died to make us love one another, and in heaven we will love all the varieties of people, and that love belongs here on earth.

      • Thank you for sharing. You did nothing wrong. You did what was desperately needed. Wish the same had been done for my father. It’s exactly how I feel about visiting nursing homes. I’m a practical person. Love singing. Love reading scripture out loud. Practicality where it’s needed should be done.

      • So interesting sir. The barriers were broken down by the Man of Calvary and we are all loved the same by this Infinite God for at the foot of the cross the ground is level.


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