Singing in the Acid Rain
With a full year behind it, you know it is full of wisdom. So head on over to Proverbial Thought to partake of that and new wisdom commentary!
Imagine for a moment that you have an umbrella. Not just any umbrella, but a super-durable umbrella.
This is an umbrella that seems to defy physics. It is incredibly light yet is strong enough to take hail and fire and brimstone falling from the sky. It is no thicker nor less functional than your average umbrella; yet it will not crumble under said hail and brimstone, burn up in said fire, nor dissolve in a shower of acid rain.
Now imagine you live in a city that has constant acid rain showers. There is relative safety in most buildings, but if we are honest we know that buildings will not hold up indefinitely to acid rain.
Some buildings are in worse shape than others. People can not stay in them long without being in the same conditions as outside.
Now imagine that you actually live in a bunker under a mountain. You are pretty safe inside. It would take quite a while for acid rain and most other things to get in.
So what do you do?
Your Dad asks you and your siblings to go out and help those in the acid rain.
Some say to each other, “We are safe. Our Dad can welcome those people in if he wants to. We can stay and prepare for the great feast!” What they do not realize is that they will find themselves kicked out of their home just before the feast.
Some others grab their umbrellas and hurry outside. Seeing how dangerous it is, they run back inside and complain about how awful the world is outside, and they spend their time talking about how great things are since they are saved from the outside world.
Others say to each other, “We will be safe with our umbrellas. We can go outside and tell them how great it is inside!” They may see some people believe them, but while outside they complain about their lazy siblings and how horrible it is outside. This pushes many away, and some with umbrellas may find themselves joining their lazier siblings outside during the feast.
There are a few who take their umbrellas and hurry outside. Some walk around their neighborhood telling others about their safe home, bringing many inside and helping them get umbrellas of their own. Others run to the far ends of the city proclaiming the news of safety and peace. Some of these reach out from under their umbrellas, getting burned by the acid rain, just to get to some of those struggling through the acid rain. Some even brave the full onslaught of acid rain to allow others enough precious time under their umbrellas to get to safety, and they end up looking just as burned and messed up as those they saved.
At the end, most of those who remain for the feast look worn out, tattered, and disfigured from the acid rain.
Isn’t it a wonderful feeling? We’re stinging, again.
Maybe you have already caught on to the point.
One of my favorite passages comes from Jude, verses 22 and 23 (NIV):
Be merciful to those who doubt; save others by snatching them from the fire; to others show mercy, mixed with fear—hating even the clothing stained by corrupted flesh.
In the above parable, the city is Earth, the home under the mountain is the Church, the umbrella is the Gospel, and the acid rain is the sin that soaks into every part of our lives and world. Obviously, then, the Dad is God. Those who reside within the mountain and go out into the city are Christians.
This past Sunday was the celebration of the resurrection of Jesus Christ. Almost six weeks later, just before His ascension, He issued this commission:
“All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. Therefore go and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, and teaching them to obey everything I have commanded you. And surely I am with you always, to the very end of the age.”
Matthew 28:18-20, NIV
We cannot reach out to people unless we go where they are.
We cannot rescue people if we do not get involved with their lives.
We cannot teach them if we do not do as we were instructed: to live like Jesus.
If Jesus, God made Man, came to our sin-soaked world, walked with us, suffered with us, even died with us, can we not suffer a little with our world to show them the resurrection power of Jesus?