Looking into Eternity….

English: Center Ossipee, NH in 1909; from an o...

English: Center Ossipee, NH in 1909; from an old postcard. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

3  Moses went and told the people all the LORD’S commands and all the ordinances, and all the people answered together, “We will do everything that the LORD has said.” 4  Moses wrote down all the LORD’S commands. Early the next morning he built an altar at the foot of the mountain and set up twelve stones, one for each of the twelve tribes of Israel. 5  Then he sent young men, and they burned sacrifices to the LORD and sacrificed some cattle as fellowship offerings. 6  Moses took half of the blood of the animals and put it in bowls; and the other half he threw against the altar. 7  Then he took the book of the covenant, in which the LORD’S commands were written, and read it aloud to the people. They said, “We will obey the LORD and do everything that he has commanded.” 8  Then Moses took the blood in the bowls and threw it on the people. He said, “This is the blood that seals the covenant which the LORD made with you when he gave all these commands.” 9  Moses, Aaron, Nadab, Abihu, and seventy of the leaders of Israel went up the mountain 10  and they saw the God of Israel. Beneath his feet was what looked like a pavement of sapphire, as blue as the sky. 11  God did not harm these leading men of Israel; they saw God, and then they ate and drank together.  Exodus 24:3-11 (TEV) 

459      Whenever you see that the glory of God and the good of the Church demand that you should speak out, don’t remain silent. Think about it. Who would lack courage before God and in the face of eternity? There is nothing to be lost and instead so much to be gained. Why do you hold back then?  (1)

When you have to deal with death….there is a sense of looking both forward and yet back.

Memories come to mind, in my case walks along shore road in Ossipee, NH, and my dad sitting on the hood of his 75 Monte Carlo, watching me finish a cross country race.  Our time working on the boat, and our time outside of Oaklahoma CIty where we waited for a tire to be changed on the U-Haul.  Time where he cried as I gave Him communion at the communion rail in Anza and he was so overwhelmed that he was unable to speak the quietest ‘amen”.  The jokes and times of seriousness.   I dont’ want to deal with the flood of memories, yet they come.

Yet I have to look forward as well – as I’ve written often this week – to the time where we will be together again, in front of the throne of God, sharing in all of God’s glory.

It’s something to remember – and indeed, it is something to consider – as we live our lives.

You see, most of us live our lives for the day… some may plan somethings out weeks or months in advance, but it is challenging to live for those days.  Our society is quickly becoming the “eat, drink and be merry… for tomorrow we… die.” society, yet not in view of great battles that occur tomorrow, but just more meaningless, causeless life.

If it wasn’t for death.  It shocks us out of our plondering, mundance lives.  It makes us actually stop and consider, why are we here?  What is going on?  Is there anything to this life.  And for a moment – we make the changes that mean something.   For death makes us evaluate life – our life.  And ask ourselves, “why do we hold back?”  Why don’t we say the things that need to be said?  Why don’t we love more, share God’s love more?  Why don’t we help those around us.. forgive those who hurt us? Why can’t we  lovingingly challenge those behaviors and words which will bring pain and separation from others, including separation from God?  Why do we carry burdens we are not meant to carry?

Even as I try to evaluate my life, my mind went to this passage from Exodus. Israel is walking away from Eqypt – away from a bitter and painful past with God’s help, with His delivering them, with His fighting to free them, and then guiding and protecting them.  They enter formally a relationship with God, this generation that Moses leads.  The blood is shed, it covers the people’s sins,… it is offered to God…

And then there is a feast, a look far foward to a feast that is to come. A feast in the very presence of God, a feast where they are safe and secure and unafraid in God’s presence… a feast that is a foretaste of the feast tomorrow, as my church gathers and celebrates God’s love for us. A feast that also looks forward to us all being face to face with God, to share in another feast – no, not just another feast – the THE FEAST.  God and Man – all of Mankind… dwelling together,  In Peace, In His glory, dancing together, celebrating His presence.

Oh what a blessed day that will be…..

It is not hard to hate death… it is not hard to feel it’s sting, to know the anguish, the hurt that comes from “losing” someone.  It’s harder still when we don’t live life expecting death.. and what comes after…

Pray for each other, love each other, even if that means confronting sin… for that is death’s primary sting….

and know…always know… in Christ… we find rest and healing.

 

 

(1)   Escriva, Josemaria (2011-01-31). The Forge (Kindle Locations 1757-1760). Scepter Publishers. Kindle Edition.

About justifiedandsinner

I am a pastor of a Concordia Lutheran Church in Cerritos, California, where we rejoice in God's saving us from our sin, and the unrighteousness of the world. It is all about His work, the gift of salvation given to all who trust in Jesus Christ, and what He has done that is revealed in Scripture. God deserves all the glory, honor and praise, for He has rescued and redeemed His people.

Posted on September 21, 2013, in Devotions and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. 2 Comments.

  1. Beautiful. I loved this!

    Kath

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: