August 3 – The Outcome Is Not In Doubt

The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet. (Romans 16:20)

Read: 2 Chronicles 33:14-34:33, Romans 16:10-27, Psalm 26:1-12, Proverbs 20:19

Relate: Have you seen any good movies lately? In the past month or so I have watched three movies. Ant-Man, Mission Impossible 11 (or whatever number they are up to) and Skyscraper. Yup. Three middling movies loaded with mindless action entertainment. There wasn’t really any suspense involved. Let me rephrase that. There was suspense, but the true outcome was never in doubt. In Ant-Man, the plot revolved around rescuing Hope’s mom from the quantum field (apparently when you are super tiny, you can live without food and water and other human company for a few decades without any deleterious side effects). The question was never if it could be done but rather how.

In Mission Impossible, we have the same plot we always do. Save the world from bad guy terrorists while being disavowed by a government that doesn’t quite understand what is really going on? Nobody ever finds themselves asking, “Can Ethan Hunt do it?” It is always, how will he pull it off this time? And Skyscraper, nobody is doubting that the Rock will rescue his family and kick some bad guy butt. We only wonder, how many superhuman feats of strength will he manage to pull off in the process.

As in nearly every movie ever made, the good guys win. It is only a question of how this will be played out on the silver screen.

React: Paul is finishing up his letter to the Romans and he lets them in on a little secret. OK. Maybe it isn’t really that much of a secret. The good guys win. The God of peace will soon crush Satan under your feet. Sometimes when we are actually living out the script, it doesn’t seem quite as certain as it is when we are watching someone else’s fictional story for entertainment. So Paul spells it out clearly. We know our final destination. The only question is how this story will play out in our lives.

Will we attempt big risks so that God will demonstrate himself awesome through our lives? Will we boldly go out doing things that will give Him an opportunity to display his power? Or is the story of our lives going to be some boring chick flick where the only question is if the spouse will get along with the parents? By the end of the film of your life, God will crush Satan under your feet. When it happens, will people be saying, “wow, that was awesome” or “finally, that took forever to finish”? The outcome isn’t in doubt, but the script isn’t finished. It is up to you to make what is left something worth seeing.

Respond:

Dear God,
Help me to live as if the outcome was not in doubt. All too often I am doing the safe thing, the boring thing, because the risk I feel You nudging me toward is just a bit too scary. Sometimes I am a bit too content letting someone else step out of the boat. Give me the courage and the faith to actually make this life something worth living. Help me to have the audacity to step into situations that can only be solved in miraculous ways.
Amen

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