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Faithful Words for week of January 5, 2012

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By Dr. Kenneth Faught

  FAITHFUL WORDS

 

 Relying on the everlasting father

 

“. . . and his name will be called . .everlasting Father . . .” (See Isaiah 9:6c, RSV).

 

God is the One who is eternal. This is something beyond our grasp – beyond the ability of our minds to comprehend or understand. He has revealed himself as the great “I AM” – the One who was, the One who is, and the One who shall be forever. He is without beginning and without end – the Alpha and Omega, the first and the last.

By contrast, we live in a disposable world.

Our lives are filled with planned obsolescence! Things are designed not to last! Every “warranty” reminds us that what we are acquiring is already expiring! Cars and clothes, toys and appliances, houses and highways, cartons and cups and plates, bottles and cans and diapers – all are designed to be temporary (limited by time).

Many stores are filled with “expiration dates.” Things are disposable because they wear-out (rust, break, fail). Things are also disposable because we grow tired of them. Much retail business depends upon our boredom, materialism, greed, lust, and trendiness! The Mighty God created the heavens and the earth; we have created a disposable world! He remains as the everlasting Father.

We live lives of transition and change. Our environment is constantly changing. The seasons change. The economy changes. The landscape changes. Even the air we breathe is different from day-to-day. Our very lives are constantly changing. We experience births and deaths, youth and old age, weddings and divorces, hirings and firings, transfers and retirements, wins and losses, joy and sadness, accomplishments and failures. Every entrance is also an exit. The ancient Greeks were right – we live in a world of “flux”. And yet, God is the everlasting Father!

How is this a Christmas message?! It’s a Christmas message because God invaded the (disposable) world of time and space. He is with us right now. No “warranty” is necessary on his presence, providence, or love. The “Hallelujah Chorus” reminds us: “He shall reign forever and ever!” So, at Christmas and all throughout the year, remember that Jesus is the wonderful Counselor, the mighty God, and the everlasting Father. He is the same yesterday, today, and forever. When you see evidence of our disposable world (like Christmas trees beside the curb with tinsel still intact), give thanks that we serve an eternal God.

 

Dr. Faught is Pastor of The LaFollette United Methodist Church.