Saturday, May 21, 2011

If Jesus came back now....

...sometime in the Late Middle Ages six men went to visit a very famous monk. The six were men of wealth, position, and prestige. The monk was a man known first for his holiness and then for his wisdom. When they arrived at the monastary they inquired after the whereabouts of the monk. They thought they would find him either in chapel or in the scriptorium reading the Scriptures. Instead, they found him hoeing vegetables in the monastary garden. (The rule of his religious order prescribed two hours of manual labour a day for each monk.)

They introudced themselves and talked with him for a while. Finally, one of them asked the holy monk, "If you discovered that the Lord Jesus was coming at this hour, what would you do?" The monk leaned on his hoe and said, "I'd keep hoeing a straight row. Our rule calls for me to work for one more hour today, and my superior has assigned me to hoe this garden."

The educated wealthy gentlemen were shocked. They had anticipated that he would have said he would rush to the chapel to await the Lord. Sensing their consternation the monk said to them.

"In obeying the rule of my order I am obeying God. I fulfill my duty to God. I show my true love for God. If I would do something different if I discovered the Lord was coming at this time, then there is something wrong with the way I am living my life right now. If there is, I should change it right now. I should always live my life as if the Lord were coming for me right then. But right now I am supposed to be hoeing vegetables. So if the Lord comes right now, He is going to find me doing my job well, hoeing a straight row."

-Desmond Birch, Trial, Tribulation, and Triumph: Before, During, and After Antichrist

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