Embarking on a long journey requires careful and adequate preparation. I confess that I often leave preparations for journeys till a day or two before departure, thinking that I don’t have much to pack, only to discover at the last minute, bits and pieces of things that need to be put in place, giving rise to anxiety and worry that I might not be on time.
Thankfully, my wife is the opposite. Any time I have a trip to undertake, she ensures that weeks before the time, I start preparing, albeit reluctantly. Several days before the journey, she would check to ensure that I have all the important things packed and if anything comes to mind, she would confirm that I have those things packed.
As Christians, we often forget that our lives are full of short and long trips. Each experience is a journey and our preparations for those journeys will determine whether we will complete those journeys successfully as well as learning great lessons on the way.
As I sat with my family to read the Bible using the Essential 100 series, we began looking into the lives of the Patriarchs - Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. These were men who undertook great journeys and became great men who accomplished God’s purpose not only for their lives but also for their descendants.
“These all died in faith, not having received the promises, but having seen them afar off were assured of them, embraced them and confessed that they were strangers and pilgrims on the earth.
For those who say such things declare plainly that they seek a homeland. And truly if they had called to mind that country from which they had come out, they would have had opportunity to return. But now they desire a better, that is, a heavenly country. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for He has prepared a city for them.” (Hebrews 11:13-16)
Imagine embarking on a journey, unsure of your destination but assured that the person giving you directions will lead you there safely. It is no wonder that the Bible speaks glowingly of these people of faith!
As Christians in the 21st century, we face a lot of challenges which seek to hamper our faith journey. Churches in countries like Pakistan, India and Northern Nigeria face severe persecutions as members are attacked, kidnapped and killed for their faith while many local Churches in the West, especially in Europe are slowly dying as a result of the increase in secularism and belief in the notion that ‘intellectual advance and economic modernisation lead people and nations past a need for faith, to a more enlightened and more secular mode of life” (Christianity Today, 2008)
It is sad to know that Europe which boasted of the great men of faith like John Calvin, John Wesley among others, have now embraced secularism, therefore seeking to replace the wisdom of God, with that of man.
There is no doubt that if we want to be successful like the Apostles, we need to refuel and restock at every stop on the way.
What is our fuel? It is ensuring that we remain in touch with God through His word. It is to ensure that we live what we read and also to ensure that we reach out to others around us. Most importantly, that we are filled with the Holy Spirit, gifted to us by the Lord Jesus Christ after He finished the work He came to earth to accomplish. Without the Holy Spirit, we will run on empty and it is a matter of time before we come to a halt resulting in our inability to complete the journey.
Do you have enough fuel for the journey? It is time to take stock and get your required spiritual supplies. Do not wait until you are empty because you may find yourself at a point where the needed fuel may not be within your reach.