Christmas break has brought beloved son and guest blogger, Josh Knowlton, home from Wheaton College. Today he weaves a tale for us…
It was the year 2050 and the end of the world was imminent. The advanced alien race—called the Barbylons by the humans—had taken over the entire world. Burning down entire civilizations and harvesting earth’s precious resources, they were a brutal force, and left nothing but destruction in their wake.
Only a small town in Wisconsin was left—its numerous prisons providing some shelter and protection for the town’s population. But the Barbylons were encroaching, and it looked as if this small town would soon fall into their dreadful hands.
Most people in the town were concerned about protecting their families. Making sure they had enough food and water to last through the worst of the alien occupation. The world—as they knew it—would soon be gone forever.
Or would it? One old man thought differently than the rest. He had faith—or what his neighbors called a “naïve hope”—that God would restore humans as rulers of earth once again. His name was Jerry.
How did everyone hear of Jerry’s hope? It’s simple. One day, in the midst of a fierce, bloody battle against the Barbylons, Jerry gathered all his resources—his cash, his precious jewelry, and his 401k—and marched to this outskirts of town to his cousin’s farm.
Cousin Hank opened the door. He was there with several others from the town.
“I’d like to buy the farm”, said Jerry, “All of it.”
At first they stood there in disbelief. Then suddenly, as if on cue, they all broke out in laughter—a kind of haunting doomsday hilarity. They thought it was a joke. Only a fool would buy a field days before the aliens came and seized everything.
“I’m serious,” Jerry insisted. “I’ll take the field.”
This time, Hank knew by the look in his eyes that he wasn’t kidding. If this was truly the case, no one could reasonably pass up such an amazing deal! So they signed the papers. Jerry got the deed to the farm, and Hank got all of the money.
When the town heard about the whole ordeal, they jeered at him. “Fool!” “Madman!” “Lunatic!” they would shout as he walked past. Hardly was there anything more senseless to do than to buy a farm in the midst of an alien invasion. “The Barbylons will soon take it,” they yelled, “and then you’ll really have nothing left!”
But Jerry was not a fool. He was not a madman. He did not have a naïve hope—he had a real faith. By purchasing a farm in these hopeless times, he was making a point.
“You see,” Jerry told them, “We will lose this war now. The Barbylons will take my farm—they will even take some of your houses and your family members. We will be obliterated! But that’s not the end of the story. God has told me that, one day, he will restore humans again to rule this earth. He will restore our houses, our farms, and our families. And one day, this field I bought will be restored—to me, the proper owner now. Wait on him and trust in him!”
But Jerry’s words fell on deaf ears. No one believed him. Not one person.
“Faith is the assurance of things hoped for” says the author of Hebrews. Buying a field in the midst of an alien invasion is the assurance of some pretty crazy hope.
Just like Jerry and the townspeople, you can have your faith in one of two places—this kingdom, or the kingdom yet to come. You’ll look like an idiot if you choose the second one. Yet that is what God asks of us.
So… where’s your faith?
(This story really happened! Kinda. Read Jeremiah 32 to find out the real story…)