I really like the old song “I’ll Fly Away.” Someone I love very much, hates it. I see it as a message of hope for a life when this life is over. He sees it as “I can’t wait to die so, I can go to heaven.” I can see his point. I’ve met a lot of Christians who have expressed that “can’t wait to die” sentiment and I have to admit that even drives me crazy. I have no desire to die young. As a matter of fact the most glorious death I can imagine is being old and tired from a lifetime of doing God’s will.
I’m also not a big fan of the way most people talk about the Rapture. It’s as if we can’t wait for Jesus to show up, take us out and fry all the “bad people.” My loved one can’t stand this philosophy either. I’m pretty grateful that Jesus got through to me “while (I was) yet a sinner” and my prayer is not that God would take me out of this world, but that He would make me not of this world enough that I can be used to point many to our Savior.
To be clear, my loved one is a believer who loves Jesus. He’s just not sure he wants to “fly away” right now. The hope of Heaven is still a blessed hope, but for those of us who love a lot of people who may not be in the book of life, we’d rather live on mission than pray to fly away. The message of Jesus is a message of hope, not just for “when we die, hallelujah, bye and bye” it’s a message of hope for all the time we have left here on earth. It’s a hope for this life and the life beyond.
Sometimes our messages of hope sound a little morbid to the very people we’ve been put here to reach. Jesus is hope not just for eternity but for today. Give the world any less than that and we give them a faith they can put off til they’re old. We all need Jesus now! He is hope now! Friends have no fear, when it’s time to fly, we’ll fly and when that is, frankly, is none of our business. We need to be faithful and leave the flying up to God.
We have a good message of hope not just for eternity, but for today, for right now. Jesus is alive NOW! Ready to help you NOW! Able to overcome whatever we face NOW!
How will you use what God has given you to share a real message of real hope in our real world? That’s what it means to be found faithful.
The time is NOW!
If you’re going to do the song, do it like Crowder did and end with Because He Lives, ’cause that’s the real hope.