Our reading from Luke today is a good reminder of how every generation probably considers the world to be in the end times. Jesus says nation will rise against nation, and in 2017, we see evidence in our world where, sadly, this continues to be the case. There will be earthquakes, famines and pestilence. As I am writing this, we in Canada have just witnessed one of the worst forest fires in Canadian history at Fort McMurray, Alberta. It has been referred to as “a beast.” Our world is filled with sadness and tragedy-economic, social and physical.
The reading goes on to say that Christians will be persecuted, but the good news is that in the face of all persecution, God will arm us with words and wisdom to defend ourselves. By maintaining our resolve, not a hair of our heads will perish, and we will save ourselves. Life as we know it on earth may become unbearably cruel, with even our closest relatives turning against us, but Jesus is our armour and shield against all foes. By standing firm in his word and promises, eternal life in his kingdom will be our saving grace.
Lord, help us to stand firm in your word. Give us confidence and hope whatever challenges we may face in our living and in our dying. Amen. — EPS