Most of us focus too much of our attention on the passing pleasures and fleeting accomplishments of this world. But majoring in minors always turns out to be a losing proposition. No one can reach for “profit” in this world and not be disappointed at how unprofitable it is.
What is the point of this “vain” life? Solomon summed it up succinctly: “Respect and obey God! This is what life is all about” (Eccl. 12:13). Any way you translate it, the point is basic — only in reverence and obedience to God can we accomplish anything.
It would be the ultimate tragedy if we set our hearts on having (and never letting go of) any of the temporary blessings of God and lost out on all the permanent joys we could have had. Let’s not lose eternity by hanging on to what we have in this life.
Even if we aren’t suffering sickness, sorrow, or distress, we should still be able to say what the Psalmist said: “My soul waits for the Lord more than those who watch for the morning — yes, more than those who watch for the morning.”
Few are the human beings who do not crave security. We all want to be sure that we’ll have what we need. But in truth, there is no security in this world. Only in the God who made the world is there any confidence that our needs will be provided.
God’s “lovingkindness” is no mere sentimental feeling — it is His covenant faithfulness and redemptive power. Having promised, in effect, never to harm us, His lovingkindness is the quality that keeps Him from breaking that promise.
Real hope is the kind that rests in God’s power, wisdom, and goodness even when, from our vantage point, we can see no desirable outcome of the problem. It is the assurance of God’s trustworthiness, no matter what happens.
God knows more about our needs than we do. And when our hearts are broken by the pain and emptiness of some need that must, for the time being, remain unfulfilled, our hearts do not hurt half as much as He hurts for us.
If you not only desire to see your Father but actually expect to do so, it will show in your face. “They looked to Him and were radiant, and their faces were not ashamed.” There are simply no brighter faces in the world than the faces of those who are turned toward God.
If we truly love God, there won’t be a single day when we aren’t fired by the expectation of looking upon His face in heaven. That’s what the gospel is all about. Death is not the end — it is the beginning of what Christ died to make possible for us.