by Pastor Tim Burt
Let me share a simple truth. When you're younger, life seems long. When you get older, it feels like time has sped by and life is short. God’s Word amplifies this truth. Psalm 144:4 NLT says, “For we are like a breath of air; our days are like a passing shadow.” Job 14:2 NLT says “Like a flower, we blossom for a moment and then wither. Like the shadow of a passing cloud, we quickly disappear.” Psalm 39:4 NLT says, “Lord, remind me how brief my time on earth will be. Remind me that my days are numbered, and that my life is fleeing away.”
Jesus taught, “Heaven and earth will pass away, but My words shall not pass away.” (Matt 24:35 KJV) When Jesus said this, He was speaking literally. One day this world as we know it will be changed by Him—but His Words will never change. We can count on His every word. We can count on His every promise! We can count on the instruction of His Word. We can count on thing things He has said will come to pass in the future. Life goes by in a blur but His Word is like the Rock that never changes. It's dependable and forever. One day we will look back and reflect on how short life was and think about whether we got caught up in that which does not matter, or if we lived it for Him.
Life is full of distractions. Satan works to fill our lives with distractions. Our heart gets caught up in living for entertainment, achievements for personal glory, politics and pride to lead our hearts in division, and to make sin and self-gratification appealing—all for the purpose of distracting us. Satan tries to draw us in so that God and His Word take a backseat and move to the background—often neglected until crisis reminds us how much we need Him. All this for the purpose of causing us to forget about the plan and purpose God put us on this earth for.
The Apostle Paul spoke about it when he was teaching single people of the blessing and advantage they could have if they would stay focused on serving the Lord. He taught them that marriage is good, but has it's natural distractions—making marriage work, having children, needing to provide for a family, etc.. (He was not demeaning marriage by any means. Just discussing the reality of distractions within a marriage.) In 1 Corinthians 7:30-35 (NLT) the Apostle Paul said, "Happiness or sadness or wealth should not keep anyone from doing God's work. Those in frequent contact with the things of the world should make good use of them without becoming attached to them, for this world and all it contains will pass away. In everything you do, I want you to be free from the concerns of this life. An unmarried man can spend his time doing the Lord's work and thinking how to please Him. But a married man can't do that as well. He has to think about his earthly responsibilities and how to please his wife. His interests are divided. In the same way, a woman who is no longer married or has never been married can be more devoted to the Lord in body and in spirit, while the married woman must be concerned about her earthly responsibilities and how to please her husband. I am saying this for your benefit, not to place restrictions on you. I want you to do whatever will help you serve the Lord best, with as few distractions as possible.”
This isn't a discourse by Paul about not getting married. And he is not saying that if you are married, will you be less spiritual or pleasing to God. It’s about understanding that life is short, the world competes for your heart, and life is chuck-full of distractions that seem to grab too much of our time and attention. For far too many, living for God gets pushed way back on the priority list when it should be the main thing—the core value of your life.
Thank God you can live your life wholeheartedly for the Lord whether married or single. I’m married, have four children and seven grandchildren. Our lives are still filled with ministry work. The need to help people know God never ends. The world tries to draw me in too. I try never to lose sight of the fact that time passes quickly. Most of the things the world places importance on really don’t matter much. My life was given to me as a gift to serve God. What I do for Him from a sincere heart will never lose its reward in this life or in the life to come. For that reason, I desire to let my fast-moving life not be distracted, but instead filled with ways to exalt the love of Jesus and find ways to influence others with that touch of His love. When that is your heart, He always leads you in that way and opens that door and equips you with the grace—His supernatural help to accomplish His will. It is God's number one priority to help all men to be saved and come to the knowledge of the saving grace and love of Jesus! That is what counts most to Him. But His blessing our life and efforts do not take a back seat to Him. They come with the prioritizing of our life for Him. So... let's not be distracted but put God and His will and purpose first-place in our lives. Then when we look back and see how we lived life, it will be with a smile and rich memories in Him!
Matthew 16:27 “For the Son of Man is going to come in His Father's glory with His angels, and then He will reward each person according to what he has done.”
In His Love,
Pastor Tim Burt
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Published by Pastor Tim Burt
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