2007-03-22 - Illusions
2 Tim 3:13-14 But evil men and impostors will proceed from bad to worse, deceiving and being deceived . 14 You, however, continue in the things you have learned and become convinced of, knowing from whom you have learned them; (NASB)
I recently attended a funeral for a good friend of mine. She had died after a long illness with many ups and downs physically. We who know her and look forward to seeing her again, well and whole, take great comfort in knowing that she is at home. The funeral was several hours away. I arrived at the house and was greeted by the family. I met a several siblings and friends that I had not met before. While we were all saddened by our loss, the loss was indeed ours. We all recognized that and took some comfort in the company of each other. Our friend, sister and daughter had passed from this life to great gain.
We moved to the church, and started to talk with others before the service. Everyone who knew our friend had many memories to share - some touching, others very funny. The service started and the minister spoke on two favored verses of our friend. He was able to show us that she had used these verses as a rule for her life and they had become incorporated into her being. Was she perfect? She would be the very first to say, "No." She was making the effort to walk the walk. But she was not deceived for a minute that she had her own failings and battles to fight. I thought the eulogy was excellent and I complimented the minister who replied, "Praise God." It was not said just said. There was purpose in his tone. He knew that he had been the instrument and that God had given him the message. He was not fooled by the illusion that he could claim responsibility for the message that had been given. All I could say was, "Amen."
I saw a very odd sight the other night. The Moon was only a tiny sliver, but the face of the moon was dimly lit by the reflection off of the Earth so that you could see the entire sphere. A passenger jet was flying at the perfect angle so as to appear to be flying directly to the Moon at a tremendous speed. Once it flew across the shadowy face of the moon, the illusion was broken. We live in a fast-paced society that is always looking for the next accomplishment or the next thing they can claim as their victory. I am not saying that the Lord has not created each of us without talents that we should develop and exercise; not at all.
I am saying this: remember the source of those talents and the time and ability to develop them. Be mindful of Who's you are, and that everything down to your next breath is there because He wills it to be there. And finally, that whether that breath is there, or it is not, He loves you more than you can imagine whether you are walking closely with Him, or you have followed the illusions of this world to very far and dark corners. If you turn around, He will be waiting ready to receive you back.
Walk in the things you know and continue to learn. It's your road map, and your guide to living to keep you from being fooled by the illusions of this world. When we are finally home, we can all lay any trophies or accomplishments at the feet of the One who made it possible.
Grace & Peace,