Vital Signs - Thursday, May 14, 2020

There’s an old saying attributed to Benjamin Franklin that says there are only two certainties in life—death and taxes. Of all the people who’ve ever lived or will ever live on this earth, 100% of them will die.

Everyone will spend their eternity somewhere. But many don’t really consider this truth while living on earth. There are those who think life in the here and now is why we’re here. They think this is their home. But as followers of Jesus, we know this isn’t our home. The Apostle Paul tells us that our “citizenship is in heaven” (Philippians 3:20 NIV). We weren’t made for earth but to dwell on earth temporarily for God’s glory.

It feels odd to say that a person’s life is a temporary time frame, doesn’t it? Surely, someone who lives 80 or 90 years on this earth has lived a good, long life. Well, when you measure that next to eternity, it’s not long at all. So, how long is eternity? Very long. It’s actually something way beyond our mental grasp. It’s like infinity with numbers and it just keeps going and never stops. That’s eternity.

For the person who has accepted Jesus as Savior and made Him Lord of their life, eternity in heaven with God is an awe-inspiring and hope-filled reality. Yet, even with the joy of eternity in our future, the current stresses and worries in this world can often sidetrack us and keep our eyes on what’s happening in the here and now. That’s why Paul told us in 2 Corinthians 4:17 that our “present troubles are small and won’t last very long.” And then a verse later he goes on to say that we should “fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen,” which is our future in heaven, because the “things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever.” What hope this should bring us!

One of the most popular Christian hymns is Amazing Grace. The final verse of the song says:

When we’ve been there ten thousand years, bright shining as the sun

We’ve no less days to sing God’s praise, than when we first begun.

Imagine that! After 10,000 years into our eternity, we haven’t even scratched the surface of what’s ahead. It’s absolutely mind-boggling! What’s happening in the here and now is just a small portion in our lives that won’t even be noticeable once we’re 10,000 years into our eternity.

Let’s adjust our sights from earth’s struggles to the hope of heaven for when we do, all else will pale in comparison to what God has in store for those of us who call Him our Lord.

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