Sunday, January 25, 2015

Jesus Is An Exit Sign

January 25, 2015
3rd Sunday in Ordinary Time

Jesus Is An Exit Sign
The world in its present form is passing away.

An Exit sign gives hope. It tells us there is an outside, and shows us the way to get there.

If anything is clear, it is that we need an exit. “The world in its present form is passing away.” That has three meanings:

1. The world is passing away from me. My “time is running out.” I have a temporary visa.

2. The end of the world is coming. The world as we know it will not continue forever.

3. All of creation is moving toward fulfillment.

The “end” of the world can mean two things: its termination or its goal. For Christians it has the second meaning. We believe that God, using the efforts of human beings, is realizing his “plan for the fullness of time.” And we know what his plan is; it is “to gather up all things in Christ, things in heaven and things on earth.” This is the Good News: “Jesus came to Galilee proclaiming the Good News of God: ‘This is the time of fulfillment. The Kingdom of God is at hand.’”

Jesus invites us to help him make it happen. He says to each of us, as he said to Simon and his brother Andrew, “Come after me, and I will make you fishers of men.” Christians know, and are charged to “bring to the Gentiles the Good News of the boundless riches of Christ, and to make everyone see what is the plan of the mystery hidden for ages in God who created all things.”

We consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory about to be revealed to us. All of creation waits with eager longing for the revealing of the children of God… Creation itself will be set free from its bondage to decay and will obtain the freedom of the glory of the children of God.
We know that the whole creation has been groaning in labor pains until now; and not only the creation, but we ourselves, who have the first fruits of the Spirit, groan inwardly while we wait for adoption, the redemption of our bodies.
For in hope we were saved (see Ephesians 1:10; 3:9,16; Romans 8:18).

Jesus is our “Exit” sign. He tells us there is something outside of this world and shows us the way to get there.

He also tells us what is on the other side. We know God’s “plan for the fullness of time,” both for ourselves and for this whole glorious, messed up, declining and developing dramatic world. It is to “gather up all things in Christ, things in heaven and things on earth.”

Our expectation and our firm hope is “that Christ will dwell in our hearts through faith, as we are all being rooted and grounded in love; and that we will be given the power to comprehend, with all the saints, what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, so that all of humanity may be filled with all the fullness of God.”

For us, our exit is an entrance. Jesus is the Exit sign that tells us there is a place to go and shows us the way.

So do I choose to see Jesus as the Way, the Truth and the Life?

Good and upright is the Lord; he shows sinners the way.
He guides the humble to justice, and teaches the humble his way.

Pray: “Teach me your ways, O Lord.”

Practice: Make a point of noticing Exit signs. Give them their ultimate meaning.

Discuss: What does Jesus give you to look forward to?

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