Monday, September 29, 2014

"For a Little Time"

    "Time passes.  Will you?"  I can still see the taunting challenge on the sign above the blackboard in my 7th grade Social Studies class.  Thankfully, I successfully completed the course, and at this point in life, the truth of the inexorable movement of the hands of the clock (or in these days, the digital readout!) more occupies my consideration.  Time indeed passes, quickly, even as James informed and warned:

   "What is your life?  It is even a vapor, that appeareth for a little time and then vanisheth away" (James 4:14).

    At 13, I may have wondered about the passage of time.  At 57, I don't.  I look back in the realization that I blinked, and entire epochs of life's journey raced by so quickly that I barely seemed to experience them.  Moreover, the older we get, the faster the pace of the moments.  So, if the Lord to grants to me more days, weeks, months, and years of this earthly sojourn, I'm sure they will even more confirm the brevity of a vanishing "little time."

    All this would be troubling were it not for the reality of eternity and its everlasting life in the Lord Jesus Christ.  "This is the record, that God hath given to us eternal life, and this life is in His Son" (I John 5:11).  The brief appearance of time ultimately gives way to the substantive reality of forever.  For those who believe, joy awaits as the vapor clears to make way for the vivid clarity of life as lived in the direct presence of God.  Thus, we do not fear the truth that "time passes."  We rather rejoice as the setting sun of this present life heralds the glory of forever in the light of the risen Son.    "And so shall we ever be with the Lord" declared the Apostle Paul of the eternity that offers infinitely more than time can ever provide (I Thessalonians 4:17).

    Time matters, and we do well to recognize and respond to the vital significance of this present life.  "Occupy til I come" commands the Master of His servants (Luke 19:13).  We do not mourn the temporal nature of our present existence, recognizing its preparatory nature for greater realties to come.  The "vapor" wafts away ever more quickly, making way for the life to come, the eternal life to come in Christ for all who believe.  This is joy to the trusting heart, and motivating encouragement and challenge to "occupy" until the brief appearance of this present life gives way to an infinitely greater and everlastingly glorious illumination…

"When Christ, who is our life, shall appear, then shall ye appear with Him in glory."
(Colossians 3:4)

Weekly Memory Verse
    Let the word of Christ dwell in you richly in all wisdom, teaching and admonishing one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord."
(Colossians 3:16)

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