Tuesday, December 21, 2010

An Empty Life

We may not all have the gift of foresight but we all have the blessings of hindsight. We can look back and see memories replayed over and over and be wistful in their recollection. Memories, or as sung by Barbra Streisand and Gladys Knight, "misty water colored memories" have a way of revisiting some moments that were either positive or negative.

We know that we do not want to have a recurrence of negative moments in our past but we seem to always want to resurrect the positive ones. There is always something from our past which wants to serve as an anchor and moor us to those moments that are, frankly, impossible to renew.

I often think back to many memories from time to time and I'm not sure why. I trust that the Lord has His reasons for bringing them back to me; perhaps to remind me why I cannot go back or to remind me that with Him are new and even greater moments...each greater than the last and any memories generated are immediately obsolete.

I have lived such an up and down life and can remember so many things. Do I, or should I, seek to hold on to those past tense moments? Should I stay mired in a past that truly will not serve me in the present?
  • Does that fabulous night at the club mean anything now?
  • Does that one woman's body mean anything today?
  • Does that reckless moment which fortunately turned out "OK" have any bearing now?
Do any of these, and millions more memories count for anything? With some, they may; with me, they don't.

Many people haven't gone down the road that I have which has led me to Salvation. However, so many people question the value of having a relationship with God through Jesus when they look at how they conduct themselves. They feel they have everything under control and, although they may acknowledge Him, they do not see the worth in "obeying" him.

I wouldn't either if that was all He was...something/someone to just be "obeyed."

We, as a nation and a world, bristle at the word "obey" but they fail to see that obeisance in the context of a love relationship with Him is the ultimate duty. If you are in love with someone, you have NO problem obeying their wishes, or accommodating their desires.

I read this morning something poignant: we were not originally "Christians," as if that is a separate race of people. We are Gentiles who are believing that Jesus, a Jew, is the Messiah for Jews and the rest of us. We believe that God came to us in human form and showed us the way to everlasting life with Him. We must never forget that there was a time when it was only He and us but, through our disobedience, we became permanently separated from Him...and we've never recovered from it.

Think about that for a moment. The complete historical record of His prophesied birth, life, and death, and his resurrection is a testament to the importance of His life for the rest of us. This record is compelling proof of His mission and has not been refuted by anyone claiming to be God or a Messiah since then. They have not met THE test of Messiah-ship as laid out throughout prophesy from the Old Testament leading to His life recorded in the New Testament.

It was not just Isaiah who recorded the prophesy HUNDREDS of years earlier but non-believers also recorded His life in exquisite detail. We weren't there but we can believe the testimony of those who WERE there! Why consider the opinions and theories of those who were not; even those who came along HUNDREDS of years later claiming that He did not come, die, and rise from the dead.

They fail the test of proof through prophesy.

This is one facet of the cornerstone of MY faith, and I dare say millions of others.

It is this foundation in which we find peace of mind and comfort knowing that our lives are not in our control but not out of control either.

Many of our friends long to relive the life they had with us in the past. They can cite the "good times" and the "wild experiences" which are deeply embedded in our minds as reason to "do them again."

To them I say, "thanks for the thought. It is kind of you to want me to join you. However, that life is of no consequence today. Do not associate then with now. Do not consider me as one who will fondly look back when I can anxiously and with peace look ahead."

I am not leaving anyone behind...particularly anyone who wants to come with me. You, today, are worthy of consideration but not the life we had together when it doesn't include Jesus. If you want to feel that I and my fellow believers are not worried about what happens on this world, in this life, I will say that you're correct. I will believe that instead of staying in a mindset that knows that the life of a non-believer is fraught with hatred, misunderstanding, bigotry, and out right racism, that a mindset contained within the Body of Christ, there is no such thing.

Colossians 3:11 (King James Version)

11Where there is neither Greek nor Jew, circumcision nor uncircumcision, Barbarian, Scythian, bond nor free: but Christ is all, and in all.

So, in this life, you either believe He is the I Am, or you don't.

If you don't, feel free to stay behind. As for me, I am leaving with Jesus.

The emptiness of my former life lies dead and buried in an empty tomb...

I am in love with the Lord and if I love Him with my entire heart and soul and mind, and love my neighbor as myself, then ALL of the Commandments will be obeyed...not out of fear but with gladness, joy, and submission that comes wrapped in the protective arms of God Almighty.

I am leaving with Jesus...one hand is outstretched to join Him, and the other is stretched back to take YOU with me.

Don't let me leave without you...


Blogger ZeroGravity said...

Donny, I can't agree with you that memories of your past don't means nothing now. If they means nothing now, why do you often reflect on them? Those memories shaped who you are today. How can some memories of your past means something and others not? They might seems insignificant now, but without them your life could be quite different. Everything matters in life...everything, even memories of our past.

May 31, 2011 at 11:17 PM  
Blogger Don Short said...

In the context of a Christan life, we are born again, so we are brand new. Those memories have not disappeared, true, but they are now in a place that has no bearing on today if our eyes are always on Him.

June 1, 2011 at 7:06 AM  

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