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The Kairos Focus

   

"Moving from sinful chaos to godly shalom through Christ"

 

 
 

Introduction

A 21st Century Agenda for the Caribbean

At the turn of the 1990’s, Communism collapsed, creating a pause in history as market economics and secularist liberal thought began to dominate the global landscape.

But all too soon, cracks began to appear in the imposing edifice:

  • Secularism dismissed God as a fairy tale, but – as St. Augustine had long ago warned – this simply left a God-shaped vacuum in many spiritually hungry hearts.

  • The naked greed, corruption and boastful display of wealth have offended many who were hearing the fainting whispers of the poor, malnourished and oppressed.

  • Mounting evidence (a lot of hype notwithstanding) has led to serious concerns over the damage wreaked by unfettered industrial society on the world’s environment, and over the sustainability of development.

So, it was no surprise to see the sad spectacle of many people across the world – including many here in the Caribbean -- cheering mass murder when Mr. bin Laden’s minions crashed passenger jets into the World Trade Center’s towers, bringing them crashing to the ground. For, it has been tempting to think: “the Americans, at last, are getting what they deserve.”

But these sights, concerns and trends are signs of an underlying groundswell: the world is at kairos. For, as Paul pointed out to the Athenians so long ago:

From one man [God] made every nation of men, that they should inhabit the whole earth; and he determined the times [kairous] and the exact places where they should live. God did this so that men would seek him and perhaps reach out for him and find him, though he is not far from each one of us. ‘For in him we live and move and have our being.’ [Acts 17:24 – 28.]

That is, God so orders the flow of history that the peoples of the world are brought to moments of decision, so that in the midst of crisis, we are forced to grope for God, however blindly. And, in his love, he sends to us his messengers in these times and seasons of crisis and decision, so that we may reach out to him and find a welcome in the arms of our common Father.

Therefore, even as we see war clouds looming, with clear signs of economic, political, social, military and environmental instability in its train, let us lift our eyes. Let us look up: from the chaotic crises of our times to the peace, order and security – shalom – that are to be found through Christ. And, let us consider how we may help to fulfill the words of Jesus:

You will hear of wars and rumours of wars, but see to it that you are not alarmed. Such things must happen, but the end is still to come. Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in various places. All these are the beginning of birth-pains.

. . . . And this gospel of the kingdom will be preached in the whole world as a testimony to all nations, and then the end will come. [Matt 24:6 – 8, & 14.]

In short, Jesus correctly predicted that as history rushes on, we can expect to see accelerating waves of crisis driven by political, social, economic and environmental instability. But, such chaotic and critical times naturally force men to grope, however blindly, for an alternative.

For, our Creator and Father has so ordered the affairs of the nations that “whatsoever a man soweth, that shall he also reap.” Therefore, our sinful folly naturally triggers chaos and crisis, forcing us to grope for him. And, in his love, God has sent his messengers in these times, so that through the gospel we may receive the Christ and find welcome and relief in the arms of our common Father.

For, it is only through that gospel that the spiritually hungry can be fed, that the balance of freedom and caring for the needy can be struck, and a way to peace and sound stewardship of our common planet can be found.

Let us therefore renew our commitment to bring blessing to the nations through the grace of Christ.

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