Shackled to the Temporary


I had a dream last night that I died. As I was ascending to Heaven, I called out to God, “Wait! I can’t die. I haven’t had the chance to fulfill what you called me to.” God replied, “You had the chance, but you never took it. You focused on the things that didn’t matter and let them keep you from your calling. I had to find someone else.” With that, I woke up and couldn’t go back to sleep for a while. My mind was replaying it over and over trying to find another ending.

The only ending God is interested in is me fulfilling what He’s called only me to do. He created me for a specific purpose. He created you for a specific purpose too. Somehow life gets in the way of doing what we were made for. We swap His priorities for earthly priorities. We get ourselves shackled into the things that don’t matter and dream of doing what really does matter.

It’s not a fast transition. It happens over time. “I’ll do what God wants me to do after I…”, we say. What happens is we spend a lifetime doing what we want while always promising to do what God wants next and then wonder where time went. Each time we pass on what God wants, we tighten those shackles a little more. We bind ourselves to the things that have no eternal value whatsoever. We treasure the temporary and dismiss the eternal.

I don’t want to live that way. I Corinthians 3:13 says that when I get to Heaven, God will take all the things I’ve built in my life and put them in fire to see what has value. If I’ve done the things that have eternal value, I’ll receive a reward. If I focused on temporary things, they’ll all be burned and I’ll have nothing to show for my time on earth. I don’t want to be standing there looking at a pile of ashes on that day.

That motivates me to find and seek out the things that will last for eternity. That makes me want to do work for God’s Kingdom. That resets my priorities and refocuses my attention on what truly does matter. Each of us have the opportunity to do what matters for eternity. Each of us are called to “go”. When Jesus left this earth, He didn’t pick out a few of the disciples standing there and tell them to “go into all the world.” He told all of His disciples to go.

Where are you going today? Wherever that is, you have the ability and the opportunity to do something that will survive that fire. You have a choice to make. You can choose to do what matters for eternity or you can choose to do something temporary and tighten those shackles a little more. I choose to do what matters so when the time of my death comes, I won’t be calling out to God to send me back so I can do what He called me to. I want to go knowing that I’ve done what He asked and knowing that I’ll hear, “Well done, good and faithful servant.”

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