Death at the Door

Death is one thing that I’ve been faced with a lot lately…in reality, we have all faced it in one way or another.  In fact, we have heard the statement that, “Life is tough, no one gets out alive.”

This has been a thought that I have considered over the past few days and have begun to really think through some parts of it…and I honestly do not agree with the statement like I used to.  What I have realized is that we have been promised something that we have forgotten, that is that we have been promised is that life will not end for us when we are centered in Christ.

1 Thessalonians 4:13-18, we find a promise that we can rest assured in…this is where I have found my comfort recently in these difficult times we face…that is that when someone close to us passes away, we are forced to deal with the reality of death….we are forced to face our own mortality at times…we are forced to take inventory of our own lives and realize what might happen should we also pass on…are we ready to take that final step to LIFE?

The scripture reads: “13 But we do not want you to be uninformed, brethren, about those who are asleep, so that you will not grieve as do the rest who have no hope. 14 For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so God will bring with Him those who have fallen asleep in Jesus. 15 For this we say to you by the word of the Lord, that we who are alive and remain until the coming of the Lord, will not precede those who have fallen asleep. 16 For the Lord Himself will descend from heaven with a shout , with the voice of the archangel and with the trumpet of God, and the dead in Christ will rise first. 17 Then we who are alive and remain will be caught up together with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air, and so we shall always be with the Lord. 18 Therefore comfort one another with these words. (NASB)”

We have a promise of a life to come…so that leads me to know, through faith in Christ, that death is not the end of life, but the beginning…death is simply our entering the door to the eternal promise that Christ has prepared us a place and we go there to be with Him…we enter into LIFE.  This tells me that if you are in Christ, not only do you get out Alive, but better than ever….you achieve what you live your life to achieve.  You reach your final goal…a LIFE with Christ Himself for eternity.

I believe it is high time for us to stop thinking that death is the end all, be all for those who are in Christ…but we must also realize that if we are not in Christ then we will find that death is the end of our opportunity to know Christ as He desires to be known…

Do you know Christ? Do you have a personal relationship? If the answer to either of these questions is no…I urge you today to find a relationship with the one who died for you on a cross…a death to defeat death and offer life…a death that offered salvation…a death that leaves us with this statement about our lives…

“For me to live is Christ…and to die is gain!” Galatians 2:20

The Savior wants to know you today…do you want to know Him?

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Being Still and Just Knowing

Silence and Rest…

It is something I have spent a lot of time recently thinking about because life can get very overwhelming at times.

One of the things that came to mind is the importance of silence in our lives. As a coach, I often encourage athletes to relax and take a few moments to quiet themselves and just focus on the upcoming game or event, sometimes encouraging them to separate themselves from others so that they can truly focus without distraction.

I have found that many times in life we tend to need moments like that as well; times where we just get away from the noise and focus. How many times have you found yourself longing to get away from all the distractions of life and just be alone with your thoughts? Maybe you have tried to separate yourself to accomplish a task with no interruptions…maybe you just wanted the peace and quiet that you can’t seem to get with the hustle and bustle going on around you.

Whatever it is, I believe it is a natural feeling to find solitude at times. God created this world and took a day to rest and enjoy what He had created…we need those times to get away and enjoy His creation as well.

I firmly believe that times of quiet are vital to our relationship with God.  I don’t mean the “Quiet Times” that we were told about in Youth Group growing up, where you pull out a devotional in the middle of a busy restaurant or in the waiting room of the doctor’s office…I mean times where you actually pull away from everything and practice what Psalm 46:10 says…a time to “be still, and know that I am God.”

How do I know that these moments are important to us? Jesus even told his disciples to get away from all the distraction to reflect on what they had seen and experienced.  Mark 6:30-32 gives us this insight that Jesus finally told his disciples to come away with him by themselves “to a quiet place and get some rest. (v. 31)”

Get away with God today…separate yourself from the paperwork, from the noise, from the errands and the running around.  Hop in the car, turn down the radio, and drive to a spot that is secluded…remove yourself from the noise and find a quiet place to sit with your Bible and reflect on the good things that God has done.  Get away with Jesus to a quiet place and get some rest.

You might be surprised at what you will hear when you take the time to be still and just know that He is God.