I got up, lit my favorite candle in my office, turned off the lights, and sat down. With the early morning sun pressing in through the blinds, my eyes began to scan across the walls; the degrees, plaques, awards, certificates, but what stood out the most were drawings and pictures that either my children made or were of them. I also could not help but notice the amount of books that I have regarding people who have passed on. As if gravitational pull, my attention was on my father’s picture and I could not help but pray, “Lord, as my father, and his father, and his father, I too, will one day be just a memory—a blink in eternity—a breath. God, as I look around at the books and writings of people who have passed on before me, they made their mark upon their generation—may I have such courage and strength.”
I began to contemplate each person’s contribution to their society: some were martyrs, some emperors, dictators, some poets, athletes, presidents, patriots, theologians, preachers, songwriters, counselors, scientists, philosophers, historians, and more. But each made their “dent” upon their surrounding culture, and some of these did so much after their life ceased to be. And then I thought to myself, “What’s your contribution?” What legacy will I leave behind? Will I be known as a good father? A good husband? A good preacher? Writer? Friend? But what about when all the people that I know pass away, then what? Will what I’m doing now matter?
And then, in the midst of the questioning, I realized why my heart is set on Christ—because only a life with Christ is eternal—nothing else matters. Honestly, the refection upon all of my sin, all the worldly pleasures and wants, desires, and affections of the flesh—they all seemed so irrelevant and worthless—as they should. My one focus is loving my Savior and serving Him forever. BUT, I’m in the midst of eternal life already—for eternity began upon regeneration!
So, my questions became revelations as to what and where I was spending my time. And I came to the conclusion that I want to do more for Christ—not based upon works, but my love for Him—I want to tell more people about Him—show more people about Him—help more people know Him. As John Wesley once said:
“I look upon all the world as my parish; thus far I mean, that, in whatever part of it I am, I judge it meet, right, and my bounden duty to declare unto all that are willing to hear, the glad tidings of salvation. This is the work which I know God has called me to; and sure I am that His blessing attends it. Great encouragement have I, therefore, to be faithful in fulfilling the work He hath given me to do.”
We must be prepared to answer these questions and answer them truthfully. Is your life what you expected it to be? If not, why not allow God to validate your life by serving His will and plan? For the only thing that will matter—the only question that will be asked when you’re no longer here—is the one God will require you to answer:
“What did you do with the gifts that I gave to you?”
I am like you, just a follower of Christ. I make mistakes. I’ve made even worse ones. But life is not about the past, but what you learned from your past and how you’re now focused on today and the future. Press onward. Move forward. Do great things!
Do not surrender to the human will, but stay focused upon the eyes of Christ and the prize set before you. I’ll end with one of my favorite quotes from the great missionary, William Carey. He said, “Expect great things from God; Attempt great things for God.”
Go in peace, to love and serve Him.