Phyllis Beveridge Nissila
But as for you, Daniel, conceal these words and seal up the scroll until the end of time. Many will go back and forth and search anxiously [through the scroll], and knowledge [of the purpose of God as revealed by His prophets] will [greatly] increase.” (Daniel 12:4, Amplified Bible)
A World On Fire
If anyone with eyes to see and ears to hear is bored, he or she is likely off in some somnambulant nether-world either by choice, chemicals, or by inability to, well, see and hear.
But this is understandably so when all the headlines are above the fold, peppered with exclamation points or announced with hair-on-fire urgency not only to manipulate the masses but also to record the real news.
Apprehension approaches panic set against a world of late filled with cities afire, lawlessness, blatant deception, silent bio-killers, shadowy governments losing their cover of darkness, and a contempt for all things good, true, and noble fast disappearing amid a maelstrom of untethered evil.
And that’s just the secular news.
For a preview of spiritual dread perhaps just ahead (if one chooses Door Number Two, that is to say not the exit door) consider this list.
Everybody wants to rule the world and hide from it at the same time, it seems.
But He Who knows the end from the beginning STILL calls us to calm. And peace. And blessing.
If you can believe it!
May I invite you to consider the following prophetic message of sorts, one that is always contemporary as well as encouraging without glossing over the evil of any and all eras.
Proverbs Chapter 3
I like to “pray the Proverbs,” that is to say, open to the “Proverb chapter of the day” (today is October 3rd, 2020, so it’s chapter 3). There are always one or more verses that speak directly to something on my mind and heart, variations on the themes of good and/or evil, panic and/or peace.
A prayer list reveals itself: “Father, help me to comprehend this,” or, “Give me wisdom and direction for that,” “Show me how this applies,” or simply “Help!!” (often with more exclamation marks.)
I opened to today’s and the entire chapter is relevant. A complete “apple of gold” in a secular setting not of silver but of chaos and anarchy (see above and above the fold).
So I wanted to share it with you.
God is not in a hurry–unless it is to remind you and me that He is here, now, in control, and still a Balm of Gilead in a bleak world.
For all things come to an end.
And His Emissary is here, waiting behind Door Number One. For you and for me.
Take a minute
1 My son, do not forget my teaching, but keep my commands in your heart,2 for they will prolong your life many years and bring you peace and prosperity.3 Let love and faithfulness never leave you; bind them around your neck, write them on the tablet of your heart.4 Then you will win favor and a good name in the sight of God and man.5 Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding;6 in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.7 Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the LORD and shun evil.8 This will bring health to your body and nourishment to your bones.9 Honor the LORD with your wealth, with the firstfruits of all your crops;10 then your barns will be filled to overflowing, and your vats will brim over with new wine.11 My son, do not despise the LORD’s discipline, and do not resent his rebuke,12 because the LORD disciplines those he loves, as a father the son he delights in.13 Blessed are those who find wisdom, those who gain understanding,14 for she is more profitable than silver and yields better returns than gold.15 She is more precious than rubies; nothing you desire can compare with her.16 Long life is in her right hand; in her left hand are riches and honor.17 Her ways are pleasant ways, and all her paths are peace.18 She is a tree of life to those who take hold of her; those who hold her fast will be blessed.19 By wisdom the LORD laid the earth’s foundations, by understanding he set the heavens in place;20 by his knowledge the watery depths were divided, and the clouds let drop the dew.21 My son, do not let wisdom and understanding out of your sight, preserve sound judgment and discretion;22 they will be life for you, an ornament to grace your neck.23 Then you will go on your way in safety, and your foot will not stumble.24 When you lie down, you will not be afraid; when you lie down, your sleep will be sweet.25 Have no fear of sudden disaster or of the ruin that overtakes the wicked,26 for the LORD will be at your side and will keep your foot from being snared.27 Do not withhold good from those to whom it is due, when it is in your power to act.28 Do not say to your neighbor, “Come back tomorrow and I’ll give it to you”— when you already have it with you.29 Do not plot harm against your neighbor, who lives trustfully near you.30 Do not accuse anyone for no reason— when they have done you no harm.31 Do not envy the violent or choose any of their ways.32 For the LORD detests the perverse but takes the upright into his confidence.33 The LORD’s curse is on the house of the wicked, but he blesses the home of the righteous.34 He mocks proud mockers but shows favor to the humble and oppressed.35 The wise inherit honor, but fools get only shame.
And it’s not all metaphor.
Images from the public domain.