Five Things I’m Thankful For – #5: Eternity

I wrote this several weeks ago and left it sitting in my drafts folder on accident…

There are moments in life when we experience something that strikes a chord in the depths of who we are.  Moments when we know, like Eric Liddell of “Chariots of Fire” fame, that we have found something we were created for.  It’s like when I’m doing some work in the garage and trying all different tools that sort of, kind of, just barely get the job done (but are incredibly frustrating) and then I find that tool that was made for what I need.  It’s like when you step out in faith to do something that at first terrifies you but as you do it you know that somehow, some way, God has wired you to do that very thing.

So often we look at spending eternity with God as getting everything we want, but what we want is way too small.  Eternity getting what we want (especially getting what we want this side of heaven!) would be extremely limiting, boring, and disappointing.  I am thankful for eternity because it will not be the ongoing experience of getting what I want, it will be the ongoing, ever-expanding experience of finding the purposes for which God has created me.

Every moment of eternity will be a new discovery of God’s grace in how he has created us, how he sustains us, who he is and who he has made us to be.  We serve an eternal and infinite God and we will have the extreme joy of spending eternity experiencing the depths of his love, grace, and wisdom.  We will know the fulfillment of Paul’s prayer in Ephesians 3:14-19 that we would know “how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ”.

This side of heaven these moments are gifts that give us a scaled down glimpse of eternity.  But every day with God in eternity will be a new experience of joy, a new discovery of who we are and who God is.  Every moment will be an “aha!” experience that makes us want to jump up and call out to anyone who might hear, “Have you ever seen something this amazing?!”

In eternity we will find something we long for in this life – something people too often despair of and so seek selfish pleasures instead.  We will find and experience in ever increasing measure the purpose for which we are made – to see, experience, and live for the glory of God.  It is the reason we are created, the reason Christ died and rose again, and it is the promise that is summed up in Revelation 21:3: “Now the dwelling of God is with men, and he will live with them.  They will be his people and God himself will be with them and be their God.”

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