Jesus replied, “Let us go somewhere else — to the nearby villages — so I can preach there also. That is why I have come.” Mark 1:38
The time was World War II. The place was a Jewish concentration camp in Hungary. Hundreds of prisoners were enslaved in the compound’s factory. Then, one day, everything changed. Allied bombs leveled the factory and cancelled all work … or so that’s what the prisoners thought. Surprisingly, the next day they were marched out to the factory as if nothing had happened. They were ordered to shovel a great pile of sand into carts and deliver it to the other end of the rubble. The next day the process was repeated, albeit in reverse. The same pile of sand was moved back and forth, day after day, after day.
Slowly a picture of their futile future became clear. One man broke down in tears and was dragged away. Another started screaming; he was beaten until he was quiet. One individual, a veteran of three years in the camp, ran toward the electrified fence.Prisoners shouted a warning; guards demanded he stop. He didn’t. These, the first of the living dead, were soon joined in their madness by others. The camp commandant slyly snorted that soon there would be no more need for the ovens. These men went mad because their lives had no purpose.
It is possible that you, or someone you know, feels that your life has no purpose, as if you have no future, no destiny. Confronted with the futility of a dark and dreary future, many end up feeling that life consists of only being born, suffering through the years, and dying. Such a fatalistic attitude leads to despair, depression, and a darkness of the soul. But your life does not have to be that way. The Lord God, who created you, has a plan that can bring light to your darkness and hope to your helplessness. According to God’s plan, it was His Son’s destiny to be born into this world so that, through His substitution, your destiny might be transformed.
Listen! Jesus said, “I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full” (John 10:10). He was born into this world so that we, who walk in the darkness of fear and failure, sin and sadness, might be moved into the light. Does it sound like God is offering a different destiny than that which you thought was inevitable? He is! Let the Lord tie you into His plan. It’s a simple one: Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ as your Savior, as your Lord, as your Future.
Excerpt from The Lutheran Hour sermon preached on February 9, 2003
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