God's Country

I like country music. The singers seem to say what I’m thinking. Most are not afraid to say the words Jesus, God and Heaven in their songs. Some are a little rough around the edges, but most are pretty solid citizensTheir songs are simple and honest; dealing with real life experiences.  

I heard a song recently stating, “everybody wants to go to Heaven, but nobody wants to go now.” Many of us think that way. Sure, I want to go to Heaven, but I have a few more things I’d like to do before I go. We say we are ready, but some bags are not packed with things needed for the trip.

Jesus told the disciples about his return to earth, “No one knows about that day and hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father” (Matthew 24:36). He continues, “So you must also be ready, because the Son of Man will come at an hour when you do not expect him” (Matthew 24:44).

Do our prayers ask God to change circumstances around to fit our desires, not his? We can be sure; God’s plan will prevail. God always answers our prayers; sometimes the answer is “you don’t need that to happen now. Be patient.”  

Patience is one of the fruits of the spirit we are supposed to possess along with love, joy, peace, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control. All are difficult to maintain, but patience seems the most difficult for me. Our “instant lifestyle” causes that. Things must happen now.

Rick Warren, in his book, The Purpose Driven Life, writes “It’s easy to worship God when things are going well in your life, but circumstances are not always pleasant. How do you worship God when he seems a million miles away?” He continues, “The deepest level of worship is praising God in spite of the pain, thanking God during a trial, trusting him when suffering and loving him when he seems so distant.” Trust and faith is our key.

Another country song describes a young girl driving home. Hurrying along, she hits a patch of ice and looses control of the car. She sings a prayer; “Jesus take the Wheel.” What a novel idea. Shouldn’t we be asking God to “take the wheel” of our life and change us to fit his plans. We should ask God to take control of our life and make us into the person he had in mind when we were created. Sometimes we miss God’s blessing because we don’t trust him completely and refuse to listen when he speaks.

"Everybody wants to go to Heaven, but nobody wants to go now"