“Be Prepared” is the way the Boy Scouts remind themselves to be ready, on the lookout, set to do their duty at any moment. Do you have the right skills? What equipment will you need? Better get prepared! Bring matches, but learn to start a fire without them. Carry a sleeping bag, but know how to build a shelter if needed. Be prepared for anything.
But can you prepare for anything and everything? Goodness knows we try. When all our plans fail and our fears overtake us, we are left wondering where to turn.
This week in worship, we hear from 1 Thessalonians 4:13-18. This is the earliest Christian letter in the Bible, where we get to hear the early challenges to faith in Christ. It seems that even those who believe in Jesus are dying, suffering and experiencing the troubles of the world. Jesus doesn’t seem to be very good protection from the struggles of life. There is no Jesus shield around churches that keeps the problems of the world away from us.
God’s encouraging word, however, is that we are not saved by our preparedness. For even those who have died are safe in Christ. The trials of the world may overtake us, but the good news of Jesus Christ gives us hope – a great hope that even death itself cannot take from us.
See you this weekend,
Pr. Lars Olson