Recently, I saw the premiere of a new TV show with an interesting premise. It is set in a modern town where all the residents are actually characters from a storybook. They were put under a curse by an evil queen and were relegated to an existence in which there would be none of those inevitable fairy tale happy endings.
Modern day versions of many of those characters from familiar fairy tales are living in that town including Snow White, Little Red Riding Hood and Rumpelstiltskin. However, none of them know who they really are or recognize the reality of their situation. It seems that only one little boy has figured it out and tries to enlighten certain other individuals who can battle the evil queen and rescue the people from the consequences of the curse.
It sounds somewhat like the situation we find ourselves in. We live in a world that, to a great extent, fails to recognize its true condition. It too is under a curse due to sin.
But many people relegate such ideas of mankind's fall into sin, the existence of a devil and the prospect of having to spend eternity in a place like hell to the realm of myths and fairy tales. They might even include stories of a savior who worked miracles, sacrificially gave his life, and was resurrected from the grave as being similar fabrications of humanity's religious imagination.
Some people refuse to believe that there is a realm beyond what our eyes can see and our hands can touch. They don't realize that they themselves are more than merely a higher form of animal life that exists on this planet for a few years before passing away into oblivion. They are not aware that they are souls who will live forever.
They don't see that there is a good God who loves them and has made a way for them to be set free from this curse to become His children.
And even some of us who have figured out that mystery still have a tendency to lose sight of it. We get so wrapped up in the cares and activities of this physical world that we lose that perspective of the spiritual world, even forgetting at times who we really are and what our purpose entails.
One of Charles Wesley's hymns reminds us that we have a charge to keep "a never-dying soul to save, and fit it for the sky." But our purpose goes beyond making sure that our own souls are right with God and prepared for eternity.
We are also in this world to be ambassadors for Christ and to help enlighten others to the truth about God, as well as about themselves. We also should be engaged in the battle between good and evil. We are called to put on the armor God provides for us and to fight as good soldiers of Christ.
Let's not forget who we are. Let's not end up settling in as mere earth-dwellers instead of seeing ourselves as citizens of heaven who are passing through this land on their way home. Maybe some of us need to wake up and submit to God's calling to be the modern day Elijahs , Joshuas, and Apostle Pauls -- to boldly stand against evil kings, to bravely march against unassailable walls and to faithfully share the gospel in spite of hardships and persecution.
If we will steadfastly follow the Bible's admonition to "not look at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen" (II Corinthians 4:18), we will not only discover a good and purposeful life, but we will assuredly enjoy one of those proverbial happy endings.
The Rev. Tony W. Elder is pastor of Wesley Community Fellowship Church. He can be reached at 770-483-3405 or by email at RevTElder@aol.com.