Continuous, monotonous, repetitive, boring sameness, welcome to the life of the vast majority of people on this planet, both the lost and the saved. They are all alive, but very few of them are living. In the kingdom of sameness there is frustration and boredom, apathy, repetition and despair. The routine is the same, life is what it is, might as well get up again today and get it over with.
If you are in the workplace still, it’s get yourself up, go to work, come home, probably watch some television, go to bed, ad infinitum. If you have children, then the equation is modified somewhat, though not to an extreme degree. Dependent on their ages, interests and personality traits as they grow up of course the path will alter somewhat, but normally not in a drastic way. For those who have reached their retirement years, at least in the sense of a full-time employment position, the effects of repetition can be devastating. For though they may have planned financially for these days, the nagging question of “now what” is always in front of them, what shall I do to fill up today is each mornings question.
There is despair and despondency in the kingdom of sameness, external and internal boredom, always searching or waiting for the “next new thing” to appear, always wanting more but not knowing what that more is or how to find it. Perhaps someone heard something that I have not heard yet, maybe the purchasing of another new item will make me feel better, for the one I bought last week is already old to me. A new program on the television, a different sofa, car, a different brand of this or that, anything to assuage my fears that tomorrow will be just like today.
The “what needs to be done today” questions will always be with us, no matter our age or the circumstances that surround our lives, when these daily tasks are done though, when the fulfillment of these requirements of our daily lives are completed, well, now what. There are some that look forward to these mundane, repetitive tasks, spacing them out over their day so that they do not have to remember that they live in the kingdom of sameness, living but not truly alive, remaining where they do not want to be, but fearful of what is beyond the kingdom. New means change, and there are many that fear change above all other things, there is a strange sense of security in repetition for some, the knowledge that no demands will be placed upon us beyond that which we feel ourselves competent to accomplish and are comfortable with.
The kingdom of sameness is populated by both the lost and the saved, those who know Christ as Savior, are just a little different in their actions towards the repetition. The same needs that the rest of the human race either must search for or perform are there each day of course, food, water, shelter, but the repetition comes in the form of what they would consider the fulfilment of their requirements to the Lord. Sunday morning service, perhaps a mid-week bible study, generally the same as the Sunday service, just a little different dress code, so to speak. Perhaps during the week an uplifting song or two on the radio or a verse sought to assist them in what they might consider trouble, to ease their mind, prayers that are at best generalities, and then back to church the next weekend.
The problem that I tend to see in these Christians is that they are usually looking in the same places to fill up that “extra time,” the world. We should expect the lost to do what they do, search, as it were, throughout the entire planet for the things that will bring a semblance of happiness into their lives, to look for instances that will give if not meaning, at least a temporary reprieve to the continuance of sameness, anything to assure them that tomorrow is worth looking forward to.
Some have determined that sameness is the proper path, and in a sense have thrown themselves onto that path with great determination. You have met this person, and hopefully it is not the one looking back at you in the mirror each morning. His ambition and drives are centered around the needs of the world, at least that is what he tells himself. Whether he be a trash collector or a doctor, his drive in life, as least as much as he has convinced himself, is to perform the tasks that have been set before him to the best of his abilities, go home and then return again tomorrow to do it again. He has done his part for mankind.
He finds fulfilment in his job, and very little else, and those other “little things,” are only the needful items that must be accomplished before returning to what he continues to believe are necessary functions to keep the world turning. It is quite easy to help these people that live for the accomplishments they believe are contributing to the continuance of the world, though they rarely thank me for it. I simply inform them that there are approximately eight-billion people on this planet at the moment, and that I am quite sure that there are at least a handful or two that can perform the functions of their job just as well if not better than they can. It is meant to assist them in their pride level, but it usually doesn’t.
We are all maintenance men, whether your responsibility is to keep the roads up to standard, the electricity on, the patient well, or serving in a restaurant, we are all here in one way or another to fulfil one of the first commandments to man, subdue the earth. (Gen. 1:28) It is in a sense the way that God has put a purpose into the heart of man, to give him a sense of usefulness, a proper plan to teach him not to be slothful, but it is not the completeness of the plan that He has for His children, His called out ones. It is in the life of the lost to know nothing but this world, it is our responsibility to inform them that there is more.
It is very dark in the kingdom of sameness, each one that lives there is always searching for a pinprick of light, looking for the next something that will remove the mundane, the repetitiveness, the sameness. When they do find a small light, they rush towards it, holding onto it tightly, but each time they find it, it begins to fade, sometimes slowly, at other times almost immediately. The newness never lasts, the repetition beckons them again, and the longer they live like this, the less they search, despair sets in, nothing will ever truly change, they have made their bed and they might as well lay down in it and get used to it.
Too many believers tend to think that they are performing their obligations to our Lord by completing these day-to-day lifelong tasks, and by adding being polite, kind and nice to all they meet, they have pleased Him they are to serve. If church attendance, an occasional mid-week Bible study, and a prayer before they begin their meal is thrown in, well now you have a Christian. These types of Christians live right along side the lost in the kingdom of sameness, in fact it can be very difficult to tell the two of them apart. They will give the same cheery “Good Morning” as the lost, speak at length at to what is happening in the community or the world issues of the day, even at length about television programs that they may have in common, but very rarely will the conversation revolve around our precious Savior, at best perhaps you will hear the words “blessed” or “praise” thrown in for good measure.
So, what is wrong with that, you may say, are we not supposed to be like our neighbors, friendly towards them, polite and kind at all times, share their interest. Yes and no, my friends, yes and no. Many have forgotten that they are to be the light of the world, not just “nice people,” not of the world, these have lost sight of the fact that they are to be the salt, (Matt. 5:13) and that salt brings a flavor to all that it touches. The lost are supposed to see in us something that they want, and if all we talk about to them are the things of this world, why would they want more of what they already have, why would you offer them more of what you are not supposed to be a part of in the first place? In the kingdom of sameness there is nothing new, nothing different, they will see you as just another resident if you offer them nothing more than what they already have.
I know of individuals who are almost constantly seeking out others to talk to, it doesn’t matter what the subject matter is, as long as there is someone there to help them fill the void of silence, to help them keep the loneliness at bay. You know, or at least you are supposed to know, the only one who can truly do that for them, the one who has promised to never leave us or forsake us. (Deut. 31:8) Are you telling them about Him, or endlessly conversing about last weeks sporting event or the newest cooking show on the television. You know that they are walking in the dark, are you telling them about the light, are you showing them your light or keeping it hidden. You know that they are both your neighbor, (Mark 12:31) and your enemy, (Luke 9:50) and we are commanded to love them both. Are you serving your neighbor and loving your enemy at the same time, or encouraging him to stay in the world by not speaking to him as you have been commanded to in the Scriptures. There are sins of omission.
To put it very bluntly my friends, if you do not care enough to tell them in even the smallest ways the love that Christ has for them, then quit pretending that you care at all. Yes, I know that what we do in secret will be rewarded openly by our Lord, (Matt. 6:6) but I can find nowhere in the Word of God that we are told to not talk to them about Him, in fact just the opposite. If those you meet can’t tell after a short period of time during your conversations with them that they are not just talking with another “nice person,” or even a religious individual, but a God-fearing, Christ-centered, Bible-believing Christian, then you have done them absolutely no good, and you have failed at fulfilling the responsibilities set before you in the Word of God. You have left them in the kingdom of sameness, their repetitive, monotonous life will continue in the same drudgery as it did yesterday and probably will tomorrow. You have not shown them even a pinprick of the light that you are bathed in but left them in the darkness where you found them.
I have noticed more and more Christians who will speak only briefly on the things of Christ, and then only to those that they consider to be other Christians. The have come to think that all they are to show the lost world is an example, the exterior traits of a Christian without any of the words of one. Let me ask you something if you are one of these that has fallen into this trap of Satan, exactly how are the lost supposed to be able to tell the difference between a “good guy,” a man who does not swear, treats and provides for his family well, rarely raised his voice, is conscientious in his personal, business and social life, always seems to have a kind, nice word for all he meets, someone who is always friendly to his neighbors, just exactly how are the lost expected to know the difference between this man and a Christian?
You might want to think about that one for a while, my friends, because the excuses you are trying to make yourself believe for why you don’t speak to them about your Savior are not going to be of any use to you when you meet your Lord face to face.
The lost are trapped, trapped inside the kingdom of sameness, and there are literally thousands if not more kingdoms with various names and titles that Satan has built just for them since he began his work against our Lord. The ruler of these kingdoms is in no way going to hand any of his subjects within these walls a key so that they can leave. You have a key, your key will not only allow you to leave that kingdom if that is where you are now, but will give you entrance back into it at any time, so you can search for the lost with your lamp in the darkness that they abide in. The key that you have is meant to be shared, just as the light that you have been given is meant to assist the lost in finding their way to the Savior. They are walking in darkness, you have a light, how much simpler than that can it be.
Stop reading the Scriptures just because you are supposed to, stop studying them only for your own personal growth, start studying for the lost, you can rest assured that they are not going to. Of course we are to be examples, but for the glory of God and the sake of their eternal souls, start opening your mouth, stop being afraid, stop being embarrassed, start today. Although our Lord sends them to us on occasion, we were the ones that were told to “go,” weren’t we?
Don’t stop praying for them, but quit just inviting them to church, start talking to them. Sometimes we are supposed to wait for the Lord to send them to us, this is a given, but while you’re waiting, go and search out others, go look for them, they’re easy to find, they’re the ones in the dark. Get your lamp out and get to work.