AN AFRICAN TALE
Now concerning the times and the seasons, brothers, you have no need to have anything written to you. For you yourselves are fully aware that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night.
Things can change quite suddenly, our world, as we know it, can be dramatically changed in a day. A number of years ago, I went on a ministry trip to a beautiful town in Tanzania called Mtwara. It was in quite a remote region just north of Mozambique, located on the Indian Ocean. There was a beach located near the house where I was staying that I would go to between the morning and evening meetings. On this beach, I observed a phenomenon that illustrated how quickly everything could change. Just below the beach was a tidal flat that separated the beach area from the water, it was about a quarter of a mile from the beach to where the water actually began. I would relax on this beach thinking it was impractical to go to the water for a swim. One afternoon this suddenly changed. There was a strange tidal phenomenon that happened when the tide began to come in, the area that was a dry tidal flat would be filled with several feet of water in a matter of just a few minutes, it was quite a dramatic change. Suddenly the water was right at my feet, going for a swim was now a whole different proposition.
From time to time I think of this beach and the spiritual lesson it teaches. Our world can change in a moment of time. I can think of several times in the Bible, where everything was changed in a day. There was the day Jesus was baptized, the upper room experience, the crucifixion, the resurrection, Paul’s encounter on the Damascus Road, these events, and many others, remind us how the landscape of our lives can be rearranged in a day.
In our world, our lives can be altered instantly. I think of events like, 911, Katrina, the earthquake in Haiti, the Indonesian tsunami, the threefold disaster in Japan ( 9.0 eartquake, tsunami, and nuclear catastrophe), unexpected historical events can alter our lives suddenly and permanently.
Spiritual encounters can also change your world. I think of the day I was born again, the day I was baptized in the Holy Spirit, the day God came down in our church, each of these moments altered everything in my life. We live in a time of changing seasons. I think the tide is coming in, don’t be surprised when your dry tidal flat is suddenly filled with water.