In our area of WV we have been listening to cicadas for a couple few weeks now. Those are without a doubt among the strangest of creatures. This brood lives in the ground for 17 years and then emerges for about a month and a half while they make babies that soon drop in to the ground and live for 17 years. I was 42 the last time they were around and will be, God willing, 76 the next time they appear.
The other day after an ambulance call, there was one was making the noise it makes in the engine bay at the fire station. You probably know the males make the noise to attract a female. The prospects for the one in the engine bay are not looking good. It is not that there is anything wrong with his call, as it was impressive. The problem is when he flew in to the fire station through the open door (or hitched a ride on the ambulance) he put himself in a position in which it will be nearly impossible to succeed. To find a mate, he will almost certainly have to take advantage of an open door when one becomes available. Otherwise, he will live out the rest of his days in vain, never knowing why a mate was not found. Think about that – waiting 17 years for the opportunity to fulfill your purpose only to put yourself in a situation that makes it practically impossible.
The Westminster Catechism, from the mid 1600’s, says that people have a purpose as well. It says “the chief end of man is to glorify God and enjoy Him forever.” Unfortunately, like this particular cicada, we have through our sin, put ourselves in a position that makes it nearly impossible for us to succeed. The Westminster Catechism says, “All mankind by their fall lost communion with God, are under his wrath and curse, and so made liable to all miseries in this life, to death itself, and to the pains of hell for ever.” If we have any chance of escape, we must take advantage of the open door that is Jesus, who died on the cross and rose from the dead on our behalf. Then, again according to the WC “…God’s Spirit (convinces) us of our sin and misery, enlightening our minds in the knowledge of Christ, and renewing our wills, he doth persuade and enable us to embrace Jesus Christ, freely offered to us in the gospel.”
The other day on Facebook I shared a part of one of John Wesley’s letters in which he wrote, “I see a danger you are in, which perhaps you do not see yourself.” Once we confess our sin and turn to Jesus for salvation, we then realize that from which we have been saved and the danger others are in. Knowing what we know, how unloving do we have to be to let others go on like the cicada, hopelessly searching for purpose, meaning, and satisfaction in their sin? How unloving do we have to be to allow others to continue down the path of destruction to face God’s wrath?
If you know in your heart there is something more. If you know you were created for more… If God is revealing to you today that you are being called to turn from your sin and cast them all upon the cross of Jesus, run as fast as you can through the open door – tell him you are sorry for your sin, ask Him to forgive you and to help you live for Him. And celebrate the freedom of forgiveness, knowing you will now fulfill your purpose of “Glorifying God and enjoying Him forever.”