Points to Ponder: A Picture of Eternity in the Snow
Points to Ponder
A Picture of Eternity in the Snow
As I write this, I am surrounded by the violent winds and blowing snow of the blizzard of 2010. My room has windows facing west and north; my neighbor's farms, fields, and houses are lost to these whiteout conditions. I sit here warm and cozy, looking out at this onslaught, blowing horizontally, pelting the windows and bending the branches of the trees. Then I look down at my open Bible.
"Behold, the eye of the Lord is on those who fear Him, on those who hope in His mercy, to deliver their soul from death, and to keep them alive in famine" (Psalm 33:18-19).
Or in this case a blizzard. I sit in this house protected, in a sense "delivered from death." All this snow has an admirable beauty to it. But what I'm seeing right now - only a few feet away on the other side of the glass is death. If I stood out there in my sweat pants and slippers, and my thermal shirt, I would surely die. Frostbite, then hypothermia, and then eventually the elements assaulting my body would finally overcome and take my life.
But I am protected. We praise and thank God every night during bedtime prayers for this warm house. And as I think on the comforts we enjoy, I wonder about the homeless. I've known many by name; those who camp in the woods, who warm their hands over a small fire; those who sleep under bridges and in abandoned cars.
Do you take comfort in your warm home; protected from the deadly elements outside your door, have you seen the picture of eternity, which is displayed before you?
Eternal life is not a length of life, but a quality of life. Only God is eternal; therefore, to have eternal life - right now - is to live at a depth of life, a grasp of wisdom beyond your circumstances. There is a sense of security that can't be shaken by misfortune or temporal losses. Think of it - eternal life is not acquired from this world nor can it be taken by this world.
David preceded Jesus Christ by a thousand years, yet he knew of God's provision for His own. To look out at this deadly blizzard and then read these words, there is a familiar warmth to me:
"Our soul waits for the Lord; He is our help and our shield. For our heart shall rejoice in Him, because we have trusted in His holy name" (Psalm 33:20-21).
Do you know that life? You don't have to go through death to receive it. You can live in it right now. As Jesus said:
"Most assuredly, I say to you, he who hears My word and believes in Him who sent Me has everlasting life, and shall not come into judgment, but has passed from death into life" (John 5:24).
There is something deeply reassuring about looking at the life-threatening dangers of this world and then knowing they can't take my life. Physically I will one day go through death, but being "in Christ" means that death will not go through me.
"Jesus said to her, 'I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in Me, though he may die, he shall live. And whoever lives and believes in Me shall never die'" (John 11:25-26a).
That assurance of victory over our ultimate enemy up ahead also encourages us with the freedom of forgiveness and a new beginning in the here and now.
"Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation; old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new" (II Corinthians 5:17).
All things become new. What a promise! A lot of people blow off these things because of bad experiences they've had. But Jesus calls people to follow Him, not his followers, using other people's bad example as an excuse for disobedience.
Turning away from God's offer neither hurts them nor helps you.
"...because His compassions fail not. They are new every morning; great is Your faithfulness. 'The Lord is my portion,' says my soul, 'therefore, I hope in Him!'" (Lamentations 3:22b-24)
Points to Ponder is a series of occasional articles written by Rev. Dennis Whitmore, Pastor of Hilltop Christian Fellowship, 12624 Trinity Church Drive, Clear Spring, MD (1/4 mile east of Clear Spring on Rt. 40). www.hilltopchristianfellowship.com. Listen to Pastor Dennis on WJEJ-1240 AM, Tues and Thurs, at 10:45am and 7:50pm, both days.