Are You M.I.A.?

Larry Ray Hafley

Missing In Action" (M.I.A.). Those are three of the most fearful words that loved ones can hear during war time. "What has happened to him? Is he alright? Has he been captured? Is he injured and alone? Has he been killed? Is it simply an oversight, or a mix-up of some kind?" Fear. Worry. Concern. Panic. Memories. Prayers--constant, crying, pleading prayers!

Perhaps this is how the angels of heaven are affected when you and I are lost, or "missing in action." Since the angels rejoice, and since there is "joy in heaven over one sinner that repenteth," is it too much to speculate that there is grave distress among the angelic armies and heavenly hosts when one of us goes astray? We know "the holy Spirit of God" is grieved when we err (Eph. 4:30). Surely, therefore, there is mourning among the holy angels when we wander from our place.

Are you such an one? Have you become a casualty in spiritual warfare? Have you been taken prisoner by the devil to do his will (2 Tim. 2:26)? Have you fallen asleep on duty (Eph. 5:14)? Have you gone "A.W.O.L." (Absent WithOut Leave)? Have you failed to endure hardness as a good soldier of Jesus Christ (2 Tim. 2:3)? Have you been attracted and distracted by the affairs of this world and neglected your post (2 Tim. 2:4)? If you, as a parent, or as a student, gave as much attention to your roles in those areas as you give to your work in the kingdom of God, what kind of husband or wife or student would you be? Be honest.

We dearly miss those of you who are "M.I.A." We trust that you have not been captured or killed by "your adversary the devil." We hope that you have been away for legitimate and explainable reasons. God knows. However, if you have been idle, if you have been lethargic, indifferent, and apathetic in the vineyard of the Lord, it is past time for you to repent, return, and recover your soul. There is time--indeed, this is that time--for you to reveal yourself when the roll is called. Be no longer among that number that is "missing in action."