Each of us has operated under deadlines. There are fixed times within which inoculations must be administered, students must be registered, and budget requests must be submitted. I did notice in Webster’s Encyclopedic Dictionary that the secondary definition for “deadline” is a perimeter around a prison which a prisoner crosses at the risk of being shot. May we never know that sort of deadline!

            I’ve operated under many of these deadlines with you. As a called worker, I’ve also known deadlines for submitting worship themes to church musicians and worship arts coordinators so that music and liturgical pieces can work more effectively together. We’ve got deadlines in place to make certain that Katie has all the information she needs to keep the screens and the Priority One up to date and informative. 

            Now, with this initial “issue” of the Winter Blog on Redeemer’s website, we’re adding another deadline, though this one will largely be self-imposed. It is my hope and goal that this blog will be added to perhaps every ten days to two weeks, initially, and then with greater frequency (hence, the deadline). This will be a place to share devotional thoughts as well as to delve further into serious issues. 

            Our God has worked with deadlines in His efforts to reconcile us back to Himself. St. Paul reveals the expert timing of our God in this mission: “In the fullness of time, God sent for His Son, born of a woman, born under the law, to redeem those under the law” (Galatians 4:4-5). “At the right time Christ died for the ungodly” (Romans 5:6) 

            There is also a deadline looming before us in this mission, though we don’t know its exact terminus. “Working together with him, then, we appeal to you not to receive the grace of God in vain. 2 For he says,’In a favorable time I listened to you,and in a day of salvation I have helped you. "Behold, now is the favorable time; behold, now is the day of salvation” (II Cor. 6:1-2). Now is the time for our witness to others, our ministry to them in God’s name and for their salvation. 

            Again, we don’t know the final deadline, only that it’s coming; or better yet, that Jesus is coming. What we do know is the grace in which God would redeem all to Himself through the passion, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of sins. And we have the assurance that His Holy Spirit will be of inestimable value in the words we share and the service we bring.