Previous Challenge Entry (Level 2 – Intermediate)
Topic: End (02/13/06)
TITLE: The Riches of the Saints of God
By Daniel Sudhakar
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Why does a woman endure excruciating pain cheerfully during childbirth? Why does an athlete torture his body with endless workouts? Why does a climber risk life and limb to scale a mountain? Well, they all do it for the same reason… they have the End in mind. The End makes all the effort worthwhile. The woman is waiting for the moment she could hold her baby in her arms and see that bundle of joy face to face. The athlete is waiting for the moment he can climb the victory stand, and the mountaineer, his summit. The End is what keeps them all going, however tough the going may be.
The End grants us the ability to endure our present troubles. It lends us hope for a better tomorrow. And as Christians, when we know that in the End, we will meet our Lord face to face, and live with Him for Eternity, our present sorrows and troubles fade into oblivion. The End assures us of an eternally blessed destiny. Paul writes in Rom 8:18, “For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us” (NKJV). He writes about that glory in Rom 8:16, 17, “We are children of God, and if children, then heirs – heirs of God and joint heirs with Christ” (NKJV).
Another important aspect is that the End changes the way we live the present. Many a time, the End is what makes us do what we are doing right now. When an athlete keeps a goal of winning the race as his End, his entire lifestyle for the present changes drastically. No more junk food. No more late nights. No more doing things that would hinder his efforts towards achieving his goal. The goal is what matters. Everything else takes a back seat, or still better, gets thrown out completely. The same rule applies to a student preparing for an exam or a performer preparing for a show. The End virtually starts to govern every aspect of life in the present.
When the End can have such a great impact on our lives, it is imperative that we have a clear picture about the End. And if transient Ends are so important, how much more, the End of all Ends; the life ever after! When a Christian has a complete understanding about the glorious destiny that awaits him, it will virtually revolutionize his present life, his ministry, his relationships and his commitment to his Lord. When we know that we will be serving as priests and judging angels in the future, meddling with petty sins in the present starts to look childish. The impermanent nature of the present gets starkly contrasted with the eternal nature of the blessed life beyond. Sin loses its appeal when eternal glory comes into the picture.
Imagine a bride who is all dressed up and ready to go to her wedding ceremony entering the kitchen and washing all the greasy vessels. No bride in her right senses would do that! Since she knows where she is going next, she is so very careful that her dress does not get soiled. She is so careful with whatever she does now because what is coming next is so very precious and dear to her. If an earthly bride takes so much care, how much more the Bride of Christ.
In the time span of eternity, our present lifetime is but a fraction of a second. But sadly, some people prefer the vain pleasures of this miniscule, finite life to the eternal glories of the future. These people have lost sight of the End. The now is what matters most to them. They don’t see the big picture. Their vision is so narrow, they only see life up to the grave and nothing beyond.
It is every human being’s birthright to accept the gracious gift of Salvation and thus inherit eternal life. But sadly, like Esau, many choose to trade their birth right for the pleasures of this world, which are transient and will soon be forgotten. It is a heavy price that one pays for having lost sight of the End.
“Eye has not seen, nor ear heard,
Nor have entered into the heart of man
The things which God has prepared for those who love Him” - I Cor 2:9. (NKJV)
May we all never lose sight of this End that God has prepared for us.
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