Looking For The Light of Eternity….
Looking For The Light of Eternity….
Last night I went outside into the cool dark night. I don’t walk outside at night that much, but I had to get something I had left in the car. Entering a different, stiller world, I sensed the difference. I saw half-moon hanging in the dark sky. The moon seemed ancient, almost eternal (I know it isn’t). And yet compared to the electric illumination and the tinny sound of the television which I had left inside the house, the moon is at least a reminder of eternity.
I think if we spent more time outside, we would be more spiritual. God’s creation is beautiful and wondrous, and it inspires belief in Him. Instead we focus on our creations---what we can read with electric illumination and what we can see on television and computer screens. The fast changing and temporary images we see on these screens are the exact opposite of what is eternal. …. II Corinthians 4:18: “So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal.”
Yesterday too I was reading my Bible—in Matthew and in Luke. (Reading the Bible is a bit like gazing at the moon—only much more so. It gets your eyes off the temporary and focuses them on the eternal.) Reading the gospels I noticed two things. First of all Jesus is healing people right and left, and his disciples sometimes do it too. Secondly there is violent opposition to Him, and persecution of Him and of His followers. And I thought how little we see of these two things—healings and persecution-- in the American church. But in the world, both are happening a lot, just like they happened in New Testament times.
They are there, just like the moon is there most nights, but we are busy with lesser things, things which we deem to be more pressing, and we neglect what is happening to our brothers and sisters in the world. In many places they are seeing miracles. In many places they are persecuted.
You see, our problem is that we choose what is temporary but pressing over what is enduring. There is nothing pressing about lingering outside to gaze at the moon, but if you do it, you will draw a bit closer to God. On the other hand, we think, ridiculously, that watching a TV show or finishing the newspaper is pressing. Gazing on the presence of God, the most important thing we could ever do, is something we put off and postpone. We do not think it is urgent for us. “Remember your Creator in the days of your youth, before the days of trouble come and the years approach when you will say, ‘I find no pleasure in them.‘" Ecclesiastes 12:1.
I think the more we seek God and focus on His holy presence, the more healing we will see, and the more persecution we will see. Lingering to stare at the moon on a clear night changes you. Staring into the face of God as He is revealed in the Bible changes you too, but often you have to slow down to perceive Him. He doesn’t change, but you will. And what happens around you will change too.
“(Jesus said) Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away.” Matthew 24:35.
“Looking to Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith.” Hebrews 12:2.
Winfield Casey Jones is a retired pastor. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. This column first appeared in the Pearland and Friendswood Reporter News.
Thank you Casey. Charlie and I are going through the most traumatic health crisis of all, but I have never felt closer to God than now. I know beyond a shadow of doubt, he's watching over me!ReplyDelete