A Sense of Urgency

Are you doing everything that you can to help others?  Do you look for opportunities? Do you pray that God will put people in front of you who need some sort of aid, love or attention? In other words, is there a sense of deep urgency in your life for addressing the needs of others? When I talk about urgency, I mean a profound sense of longing, almost to the point of frantic desperation.

One evening not too long ago I was sitting at home minding my own business when the phone rang. It was one of my closest friends, and I knew immediately something was wrong.  One of our mutual friends was missing. His wife had no idea where he was and had assumed the worst. The lost friend was an avid biker, and rode his bicycle anyplace that was a reasonable distance to travel. He had been on his bike that day but had not been heard from in hours.

By the time I received the phone call, action was already being taken. The lost friend’s son was out scouring the usual travel routes, another friend was calling area hospitals, and still others were calling possible stopping points. Being that we were macho guys, we were ready to metaphorically saddle up our horses and ride like the wind (even though we had no idea where to go). After several tense hours of prayer and ongoing phone calls, our friend thankfully appeared. He been at a meeting that went long and had forgotten to notify his wife. It turned out to be a simple miscommunication and all turned out well. Everyone breathed a sigh of relief, enjoyed a nervous chuckle and went on with life.

Upon hearing of our temporary lost sheep, our church pastor observed, “wouldn’t it be great if we approached evangelism in the same way that we approached our lost friend?” What true words he spoke, and we can apply the same thought process to loving our neighbors as we go about our day.

Obviously, our lives are busy, but are they really? What if we spent every waking moment thinking of ways to love our neighbors? Do I pace the floor fretting about the possibility of hurting souls in the same way that I paced the floor that night when my friend was lost?  I admit that seems a daunting task, and it cramps my personal desire for comfort, leisure and physical rest. But think about all the time we can spend entertaining ourselves, doing mindless activities and generally wasting time.

I’m not suggesting that we seek misery, or refuse to enjoy the joys of living life on this beautiful world that God has created. The point is that we can often have a sense that someone else is going to address the problems of this world. Transforming a community is accomplished one relationship at a time, and those connections include our daily interactions.

There is no time like the present. Do you have a sense of urgency?