Transforming Grace

What is life all about? The pursuit of ease and happiness? The acquisition of wealth and material possessions? Filling every hour with activity and motion? Doing good deeds and attending church services?  I guess, if we asked people what life was all about we’d get quite a variety of answers.  Think for a moment – how would you answer?

Who determines what life is all about? Who determines what is important? Who determines what is cool or in style? Who determines what has value and meaning? If we allow the culture to set the pace for us, to shape our value system, to define life for us, then we will set ourselves up for constant disappointment.  About the time we think we’re heading the right direction, they change the goal line on us!  What it takes to have a full and meaningful life shifts like the dunes of the Sahara. 

An athlete who had reached the pinnacle of his sport was once asked what he wished someone would have told him when he first started playing his sport. He replied, “I wish that someone would have told me that when you reach the top, there’s nothing there.”

Another wise man discovered that truth many years prior.  His name was Solomon – perhaps you remember him.  He was the son of David, the King of Israel, and endowed by God with great wisdom and wealth.  If any man could figure out what life was all about, it should be him – and he tried pretty much everything available.  So what was his conclusion after trying money, stuff, power, wine, women, and song?  Well in his own words:  “Meaningless! Meaningless!” says the Teacher.  “Utterly meaningless! Everything is meaningless.” (Ecclesiastes 1:2)

As we consider what life is really all about, it might be best to consult the Giver of life for that answer.  Here is a least a little bit of what He says:

 Life is short, and because life is short we cannot count on tomorrow.

“Show me, O LORD, my life’s end and the number of my days; let me know how fleeting is my life. You have made my days a mere handbreadth; the span of my years is as nothing before you.  Each man’s life is but a breath.” (Psalm 39:4-5)

 Life matters, and because it matters we must use each day wisely.

We cannot control the length of our days, but we do exert a lot of influence on how those days are used.  Teach us to number our days aright, that we may gain a heart of wisdom.” (Psalm 90:12)

 Life is to flow outward and upward and not simply inward, and because of this we need to serve others and share Jesus.

When Jesus was asked the most important command, He gave us two that are so tied together that they cannot be separated.  “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind; and Love your neighbor as yourself.” (Luke 10:27)

 Life is eternal.  Because it is eternal, we need to decide what we will do with Jesus.  Now, wait a minute … didn’t we just say that life is short?  Yes, we did.  So, let me explain.

God created man to live forever physically and spiritually, but because mankind willfully chose rebellion rather than relationship, sin rather than communion with God, mankind fell.  Sin brought with it a terrible price – spiritual and physical death – separation from perfect communion with God.  And the worst part is that we are helpless to fix what we broke … so God stepped in.  God so loved fallen, sinful, rebellious, lost mankind, that He sent His Son to bring us life!

The Bible says of Jesus, In him was life, and that life was the light of men. (John 1:4)

Jesus says of Himself, I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full. (John 10:10)

Sin brought separation and death, but Jesus came to reverse the curse!  Jesus proclaimed:  “I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die.”  (John 11:25-26)

Jesus said, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” (John 14:6)

When we rediscover life, we are not talking about rediscovering how much we enjoy lounging on the beach carefree and beyond the reach of cell service.  When we rediscover life, we need to hear what God says about it.

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