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Archive for April, 2010

I have been reading a good old series of books many of you will know – Anne of Green Gables.  This is actually the first time reading them because as a kid, I could never get past the first one … or more accurately, the first few chapters of the first one.  But now I am rather enjoying them and learning too.

Here is an excerpt that I thought was interesting.  It’s a perspective on a Scripture we often quote “store up for yourselves treasures in heaven …”.  The context of the Scripture is the fact that heavenly things are eternal and earthly things will pass away.  But here is another angle on the idea of being heavenly minded:

“I can’t help it,” said Ruby pitifully. “Even if what you say about heaven is true – and you can’t be sure – it may be only that imagination of yours – it won’t be just the same.  It can’t be.  I want to go on living here.  I’m so young, Anne.  I haven’t had my life. I’ve fought so hard to live-and it isn’t any use-I have to die-and leave everything I care for.”

Anne sat in a pain that was almost intolerable.  She could not tell comforting falsehoods; and all that Ruby said was so horribly true.  She was leaving everything she cared for.  She had laid up her treasures on earth only; she had lived solely for the little things of life-the things that pass-forgetting the great things that go onward into eternity, bridging the gulf between the two lives and making of death a mere passing from one dwelling to the other-from twilight to unclouded day.  God would take care of her there-Anne believed-she would learn-but now it was no wonder her soul clung, in blind helplessness, to the only things she knew and loved.”

So many times I have looked at that verse from the angle of security.  Things in heaven will be there forever, where putting all your heart in things temporal will only leave you with nothing in the end.  But I really loved her picture of things eternal helping to bridge the gap between the two worlds – heaven is a welcoming place because you’ve invested in it already, you’ve lived bits of it on earth, you’ve put your treasure there, and so you walk into the new world with joy and anticipation.

It’s not one or the other – live in this world or live in the next.  It is a beautiful sequence.

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Why Are YOU Alive?

Really.  Not trying to be melodramatic here.  Nor am I trying to lure you into a discussion that will end with questions like “why is the sky blue and the grass green?”  I really want to know if YOU know why you are alive.

I discovered very recently that I don’t have an answer to that question.

It was rather startling, actually.  Even shocking; a slap of ice-cold water in the face that leaves you gasping like a fish.  There are countless things I know about me.  Things I know God made me to do.  Things I like.  Things that make my spirit soar.  I know a whole lot more about my design that a lot of people twice my age know about theirs.  So you can only imagine how staggering it was to realize I had two critically different concepts all rolled into one.

What God showed me is the “why” for which you live is fundamentally different from the design through which you live.  Your God-given design is very important.  You need to know how God wired you and what He made you to do.  But for your design to reach its fullest and richest color, it must be fed by something outside of it.  You need to know WHY you are doing what you do, and that’s an entirely different matter. 

You see, for many years I have been trying to make areas of my design in themselves the reason for living.  They are not.  They are the playing fields.  Somewhere underneath there must be the foundational passion, the driving force, the thing that makes you get out of bed every morning, the flash of life God breathed into you from the very beginning.  It’s where you meet Him in what you do.

For one friend, their “why” is to help people be intentional in their lives.  No matter where this person goes or which playing field they are on, this drives them.  For another, it is revealing the colors of God’s wisdom.  For another it is articulating the creativity in another person and helping them achieve it.  Each of these friends has a unique design and ways in which they achieve their goals, and underneath it all is their God-given “why”. 

It is so very important not to mix the two!

Do you know your “why”?

If not, it’s time to find out!

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