A Haiku - Eternal Life
Faith without practice to make a faithful life, may not count for much in the end
A Haiku - Eternal Life
We know life will end.
How and when we know not now.
What comes next is ours;
Ours because we planned.
We live not just for the prize.
We invest in growth.
Parents raise the child
To be all that it can be.
God is our parent.
His pattern is fixed.
He wants our faithful return,
Worthy of His love.
We can read of Eternal Life. We can hear of Eternal Life. We cannot see Eternal Life. We can only have faith in Eternal Life and live accordingly.
Saint Paul wrote in his first preserved letter to the Corinthians: "If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable. But now is Christ risen, and become the firstfruits of them that slept." (1 Corinthians 15: 19 and 20)
He went on to add: "For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive." (Verse 22)
Christians are a minority of the world's population, and Christians who daily live the teachings of their religion are a minority of Christians.
People convert to Christianity, some at great personal risk and sacrifice, and people convert from Christianity, not infrequently at great personal risk and sacrifice.
Yet Saint Paul is in the first rank of those who promise that living Christ's teachings, keeping Christ's commandments, and following Christ's example is a pathway to eternal life with him and with his father in heaven.
I was raised admonished not to waste time. A favorite saying of my mother was that "If you love life, then waste not time, for time's the stuff life's made of."
None of us know how much time our own life will consist of. Even when a medical expert says that we only have so much time to live, the expert is frequently proven to have been wrong.
With life's duration so uncertain, why would a person who believes in Christ and Christ's teachings choose something less than to strive for the promise of eternal life?
There are perhaps as many answers to that question as there are persons who could answer it.
Add to the difficulty of understanding why, the promise made to Christ's followers that by being faithful followers they will be co-heirs with the sanctified with access to all that God has. What sacrifices in this life could outweigh such a reward?
Christians are taught that it is a greater blessing to serve others, than to be served themselves, and that being charitable is the best way to share Christ's love in its purest form.
They are also taught that their good deeds in life are recorded in heaven and are far more important than wealth or fame attained during their mortal lives.....yet it seems human to seek after the praise of men rather than the love of God.
It is too simple to just shrug the shoulders and say "That's just the way it is!"
It surely is "the way it is," but it is important as individuals to pursue our own course in life, not just "follow the crowd" like the mythical lemmings rushing to drown themselves in the sea.
Eternal life is not earned, it is a free gift of God, freely given to those who give their all in this life and show their love of life by their love of others and respect for what God has already given them, be it tests and trials or even success and the righteous admiration of their fellow human beings.
Do you falter? Get up and strive again. Have you committed a grievous sin? Repent and start anew. Have you been mocked, falsely imprisoned, tortured, even faced with death?
Learn to forgive and follow in the footsteps of those who have gone before following Christ. He knows your sufferings, for he endured them to the end, and to the start of his new beginning.
© 2014 Demas W. Jasper All rights reserved.
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