The American Nightmare

Jesus preaching on the flood that destroyed the earth said, “and they were unaware until the flood came and swept them all away, so will be the coming of the Son of Man”. We know from that single statement that Christ’s coming will catch certain people unaware, or not looking for Him. We know that Jesus will come and judge those who are not ready. But what does it mean to not be ready, and what would that look like in our lives today?Suppose that Jesus came right now! I’m not sure what you’re doing. In our house my wife and Madison are playing with the baby as she’s laughing and crying with the strenuous task of learning to walk, Gaines and McKenzie are upstairs watching tv, and I’m typing while the Packers are playing the Texans in the background. What if right now we all heard a trumpet sound that cracked the glass of the windows in our homes? Or maybe the trumpet is one that’s heard inwardly by everyone. One by one, men, women, and children would begin to come out of the restaurants they’re eating in, out of their homes, off airplanes, out of the shopping malls, and looking towards the east, knowing where that sound came from and what the sound was because somewhere in their life someone told them about Christ. Someone neglected and rejected the ideology of a prosperous relaxing life and chose instead to take up the cross of Jesus Christ.

One of my favorite parables is the one Jesus tells about the man and his barns. This guy has everything he needs. We would call this the “American Dream.” But instead of giving his wealth away and being satisfied with what God had blessed him with, the man gets this idea that he will tare down his old barns and build new ones. The man said that after he did this he would sit back and say to himself soul, be at ease, you have many goods that will last you forever. Honestly think about that statement for a moment! Does anything sound unfamiliar or strange? Or does it sound exactly like the way we’ve all been raised to think?

In our  society, we are taught to make good grades, graduate Highschool, go to the best college we can get into, graduate with a high GPA, get out and find a great job, work until we’re 55, and take an early retirement where we can walk the beaches collecting seashells with our grandchildren. But Jesus calls this man a FOOL! He say’s tonight your soul will be required of you. The real question is, why was Jesus upset with this man’s mentality? I believe it has everything to do with selfishness and an unprepared heart. The man was looking to his own things and worrying about relaxing in this world, but he wasn’t looking at how he could benefit the building of God’s Kingdom. He wasn’t looking at how he might help others in need. He wasn’t ready for the taker of his soul! And he was called a fool for this type of thinking and planning.

My friends it appears that the American Dream has actually turned into the American Nightmare. This ideology is diverting our attention from Christ, and placing it on the world and its pleasures. It’s not wrong to have possessions or money in your bank account, but to only work, with the sneaky idea that get’s placed in our minds by society (aka Satan), that this world is our home is completely unethical! It’s no wonder that so many of God’s people are sleeping and will only be awakened by the hair-raising, bone chilling sound of His trumpet. Are you ready?

If you call yourself a Christian, then ask yourself this question: Do I still have EVERYTHING laid down, just like it was when I gave my soul to the eternal care of Jesus? If you cannot answer that question with a resounding YES, then something is wrong. Don’t become a fool. Remember that your home, job, bank account, children, wife, family, and soul belong to Jesus Christ. Do not become a God unto yourself thinking that you have control. Allow God to gain or remain in control of your life. Don’t fall for the nightmare! Look around today and see who it is you might be able to help physically or spiritually. But above all, be ready for the trumpet of God!

In Christ,
John S. Inman