The end of all things is near. Therefore be clear minded and self-controlled so that you can pray. 1 Peter 4:7
I often hear people say, "My goodness, with all the natural disasters around the world; the earthquakes, hurricanes, and floods, and all the wars and threats of more to come, we have to be living in the end times." And it's true. Peter makes the point in our passage today. Writing in late A.D. 64/early 65 he says, "The end of all things is near." If Peter said that in the first century, certainly we are much closer to the end in the 21st century.
But, I have to be honest. Here's what saddens me. Many who talk much about the end times don't apply those beliefs to their lives. I mean really, if you believed that Jesus was coming back during your life, why would you have a retirement account? Why not invest the money in kingdom work? If you really believed that Jesus was coming back during your lifetime, there would be no time to waste in recreational pursuits.
Here's my point: Talk translates into ... more talk ... another book or Bible study on the end times. Belief translates into action. If you believe something ... I mean really believe it ... it compels you to live consistently with your beliefs. So Peter says to be "clear-minded." Don't be so distracted with the minor things that you miss the major things. Be "self-controlled." Your life should be characterized by spiritual discipline. Pray. Get rid of the distracting stuff so that you can communicate with the Father. The end of all things IS near. That's not a topic simply to be studied. It's a truth that changes the way we live.
Father, turn our talk into conviction. Turn our conviction into passion. Turn our passion into action. And use our action for eternal purposes. In Jesus' name. Amen.