Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Death, Where is Your Sting?

22 For when a few years are finished, I shall go the way of no return. (Job 16:22)

A few times now I have faced death, eye-ball to eye-ball. I have definitely lost my teenage indifference to it. It is not death that I fear. I do not like the discomfort that leads up to death, but I am settled that death itself is the gateway into the presence of every good, wonderful and positive experience that can be imagined - it is the gateway into the open-faced presence of the Lord Jesus Christ. Oh death, how wonderful you are! Death also limits the evil that can be achieved by one life, and limits that evil to one life-time. Death is God's means of restraining the extent to which evil can spread its influence.

My fear, however, is that I will not accomplish the good works that God has ordained for me to achieve in life, this side of death. Sin, in my flesh, is deceptive, and trips me up constantly, and distracts me from the good that I could do, and points me towards the evil that I should not do. I long to hear the commendation of my Heavenly Father, "Well done you good and faithful servant, enter into the joy of your reward."

Lord, grant me the strength to serve you well in the years, weeks, days that I have remaining this side of death. Let me know You, and the power of Your resurrection, that I may endure with patience the fellowship I am to have with Your sufferings. Cleanse me in Your blood and wash me with the washing of Your Word, so that when the moment of my death arrives, I will die well, and in so dieing, enter into Eternal Life with a clear conscience to receive my reward which has been laid up for me, in Christ Jesus.

Even so, Lord Jesus, Amen!

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