“My hope, my home, my calling is in a heavenly country looking upward and forwards, longing to bring glory to my God, my Father whom is not ashamed to call me daughter. Seeking to serve Him in this world and the next, to spread His words, His hope, His love. He has put eternity in our hearts, this world will never satisfy my craving for a home; I look on, cherishing expectation of the fulfillment of all of His promises, being fully assured that He is preparing a home for me.
In the meantime, this world tests my faith, strengthens my convictions, breaks my heart and pushes me to a life lived completely for the One who gave His life for me. He has created me with a desire to give my heart away to His service, to allow my flesh to drown in His love and my spirit resurrect in His love. It’s not enough to just believe, it never has been. So what am I doing for His kingdom?; what is He doing in my heart?
This gypsy heart is beating for a finer country, but won’t find it on this earth. So, I look to a better country, a heavenly country.”
I wrote that little piece a few days ago, reflecting on the three suicides I’ve heard of in the last week. One of them was a friend, I used to babysit his kids, and surfed with his son. One was a guy I met when he came into the diner I work at, he killed himself the next day. The other I’m sure you’ve heard of-Jr. Seau. Today, my cousin killed herself. This all absolutely, completely, ferociously breaks my heart. The devil is taking people down one by one, and I never see it coming. It prompts me to inspect my own life. What kind of attention am I paying people, how sincerely am I listening, fellowshipping and loving? I was going to see my cousin next week. And now she’s gone. Four people in seven days. Those numbers are huge.
In the last few weeks every time I leave my house to shop, to work, to read at a coffee place, wherever I am it seems like I end up talking to someone about Jesus and what I believe. Which is great, praise the Lord! Y’know? Only, the people I talk to are so lost. They believe in Buddhism, Islam, or a guy I talked to today didn’t believe in anything. He told me that he couldn’t comprehend the existence of human souls. I just kept thinking as I talked to these people, how greatly I lack in boldness, compassion and consistency for these lost souls. I want to lead a life of service to my Savior, but I always stutter when I explain my beliefs about the afterlife. I don’t want to offend people, I don’t want to come off as judgmental. I want to love people, to be there for people; I want to be a constant in their lives to where I can say with as much certainty as monotonous American life grants us that I will see you next week, we will finish this conversation, I will be here anytime you need prayer, a listening ear, an open heart, a friend, anytime you need to be reminded of your worth of the great value of your precious soul. I want to become a regular in people’s lives. I want to be someone they can count on seeing around, someone they aren’t afraid to talk to, confide in, and ask questions. I want to find community and knit it closer in love without clique’s, judgment and preference. My Jesus was attracted to the oddballs of this world, the people who seem crazy, broken and lost, poor in spirit- those are whom He came to save, therefore those are whom I am here to love.
Something else that Jesus did, though was He told it plainly. He made the Good News so simple that a child could comprehend, He spoke in parables sometimes, but even those were simple enough to understand to those who chose to hear. It’s really difficult to tell people that if they don’t accept the free grace that Jesus has imparted to us through His death, if they don’t believe in the power of His Holy Name, and His blood that was shed for our sake’s then they will be condemned to eternal damnation. That’s not something I want to say to someone I just met, but wouldn’t it be worse if I said nothing and their life ended never having heard? Yes, it would be so much worse. If nothing else, I hope that they will think about the things I tell them, and that they will seek out the truth for themselves. And I pray with all that I have in me that they will be lead to the Way, the Truth, and the Life, because no one comes to the Father except through the blood of Jesus Christ.
It’s not enough anymore to just be here for the moment. I need to learn to be here and completely here, for the season; for the lasting of relationships, of friendships, of fellowship. Even though my heart will always wander, I need to refocus this wayfaring spirit on what’s important in the here and the now. The two biggest commandments are to love God and to love each other. Those both speak of relationships, of lasting relationships.
People aren’t going to waste their time on something they don’t believe is going to last, if I truly want to invest in people I have to show them that I’m actually here. “Maybe I’ll see you, maybe I won’t, I’ll let you know.” That’s how I’ve lived and ‘planned’ since I can remember. God is calling me to something more concrete and it’s completely contrary to my nature, my instincts, my self preservation. “I’ll see you next week.” You wouldn’t believe how enormous a statement that is, coming from me. There can seldom be found an exaction less contrary to my globe-trotting heart; but if I am to obey, I must believe and if I am to believe, I must obey.