Monday, August 24
Apostles' Creed Focus
“the resurrection of the body, and the life everlasting. Amen.”
“For I am already being poured out like a drink offering, and the time for my departure is near. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith. Now there is in store for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day—and not only to me, but also to all who have longed for his appearing.” - 2 Timothy 4:6-8
Have you ever seen someone reach the end of their life and do so with an incredible amount of grace and peace? For myself, I saw a coworker’s wife pass on due to a long battle with breast cancer. As sad as the process was, to see them walk through such a dark time as a family unit, the stories of her faithfulness and future hope seemed to be endless. Her time in the hospital brought countless hospital staff workers to our church, solely because of how her hope shined in the face of the darkness of death. They simply could not understand how someone could have the attitude she did with the outcome that was soon to arrive. Her family’s ability to walk through this tragedy became a launching point for her widowed husband to care for those in similar situations. These few examples are told to bring about the point that life matters and the hope Christians find near death is unlike any other experience.
As Paul writes to Timothy in the New Testament in the ending steps of his walk with Christ, he looks back on his life with fondness and looks towards his future with joy. With some of the most iconic language in the Bible, Paul talks about how he will finally get to pass over that finish line and see his savior face to face. In his hope he is assured of the righteousness God has given him, but also reminds us that this will be true of all of those who follow Christ.
Jesus gives Christians the gift to stare at death and smile. He has conquered what we never could on our own and offers an everlasting life we could never obtain in our own power. When we know that world we live in isn’t our home, but rather a hotel, we see life much differently. No matter the trials we face in our day, the hope that God secures for our future covers the blackest of moments with hope. The pain of today is not diminished completely, but it will never have the ability to paralyze our future.
The Christian faith is worth finishing and finishing well. We can always lift our eyes and know what God has in store for us. Where does this leave you today? What trial or circumstance has you so focused on “the now” that it’s hard to see past it? What dark area of your life makes you struggle to cling to what God promises for those who place their faith in him? Be reminded today that for the Christian, your future is sealed. The life God wishes for us is worth pursuing because one day, we too will see God face to face. What an indescribable moment that will be!
God thank you that your promises always remain true. Please remind us of what the future holds and walk with us as we face today’s troubles. Lord please encourage us as we run our race and may we glorify you in every way as life moves forward. Amen.
Verses for Further Reflection
Acts 20:24, 1 Timothy 6:12, 1 Corinthians 9:24-27