My life, a work in progress.
Seen on a church sign: “What would you choose to do if you knew you could not fail?”
Naturally the “could not fail” part triggered a link to my postmil hope (read: expectational confidence) in a redeemed earth. If you approach life with the understanding that the Church will be triumphant in fulfilling her original commission to “fill the earth and subdue it”, would you place a different value on certain things that might well outlast you?
For example, if you knew that the Church would eventually be successful in reversing the cultural trend toward isolated living (even in neighborhoods), what foundational steps in your lifetime would you take to accomplish that – probably many-decade long – goal? How about passing along a vision for a well-integrated, supportive, interactive, love-demonstrating, close-knit neighborhood community to your children? And committing yourself – and them – to stay in one place for a number of generations, in order to see that neighborhood change?
What if you knew the Church would eventually be successful in re-establishing our antinomial political system on biblical foundations? Would you choose to begin attending city council meetings with your children, or volunteering to work on village committees? How about encouraging your children to become trustees, mayors, zoning board chairmen? How about your grandchildren becoming mayors, representatives, congressmen? A strong building needs a solid foundation, and a solid foundation can take a long time to build.
The Church in the recent century has taken on a near-fatal urgency in her work. By placing the end of all things “at hand”, she has focused on work that reaps immediate results (e.g. obsessive evangelism, exponential church growth, political lobbying, etc.) while ignoring so many of the basics (e.g. strong marriages, children keeping the faith, obedience in all areas of life, etc.). A long-term vision of success – that cannot fail – should keep us from hurried, misguided busy-ness.
Remember the “slow food” movement? Maybe it’s time for a “slow religion” movement.