And this is the testimony: God has given us eternal life, and this life is in his Son. 1 John 5, verse 11.
Why does this matter?
There’s this friend of mine whose daughter is struggling with pregnancy and drug abuse. Her sisters and mother are all heavy users, and the place they call home is broken. They don’t know God, and can’t see much need for Him either. Far as I know, they could care less. In a world where all they know is hardship and anguish, do you think my friend, or his daughter, want to live forever?
And then there are the self-professed God-skeptics called ‘atheists.’ What happens when they are faced with crisis or death? A friend of mine is an atheist, yet more than once she has asked me to pray for her; I sincerely hope she can see God hasn’t been inactive, that He’s working through the addiction, crime, and sadness around her to tell her how much He cares. Do you think atheists want to live forever?
“Lord I want to go to heaven, but I don’t wanna go tonight.” Joe Diffie sang that. “Everybody wanna go to heaven but nobody wanna go now.” That one’s from Kenny Chesney. No, I’m not equivocating corny country music with the holy gospel, though I do suspect God must like a steel guitar. But the thought sticks in my mind: we all want to go to heaven. We all want to live forever, even those who don’t follow Jesus. Ask me if I want to go to heaven right this moment and I would have to tell you no. I’m ready, and I’m willing, and I’m prepared…but I don’t want to go just yet. There are things that, God-willing, I’d like to do here on the third rock.
I’m not alone in that line of thinking. We all want to live forever because we all want our lives to have meaning that lasts beyond the time we live here. In the long line of human billions, we as individuals are relatively unimportant. But not to God. To Jesus, we matter very much. Each one of us has meaning, purpose, special status in His eyes. Because of Him we are destined ahead of time here to live with Him forever. God gave us life to have meaning, to know He matters.
Jesus is why it matters.
Jesus is why God testifies and why that matters in this world. He testifies because, in Jesus, we live forever. Our lives have purpose and meaning. We matter. It matters. It matters to the hounds in the media. It matters to my friends and their struggling children. And it matters to you and me. To Jesus, we matter and we are important and we are the reason why He stretched out His loving arms to die.
Lord, thank you for loving me. Help me to live my life in Your purpose, in ways that matter to You.