May 27, 2018

Sunday Devotional With Mr. E: The End

Endings can be tough!  Sometimes we get so involved in creating a work or series of works that it is hard see it come to an end. We've spent so much time developing concepts, sketched out ideas, experimented with materials, and bringing our ideas to fruition.  The work is not just a product of our training, but a part of ourselves. It is no wonder so many of us struggle to call a work truly finished. This can be exasperated if there is not a clear direction of where we're going next. The end of many things can bring fear & uncertainty.  However, the end of a work of art can also bring freedom to begin anew.   It is truly in our perspective.  Endings are just beginnings on the other side of a problem.

For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain.  If I am to go on living in the body, this will mean fruitful labor for me.  Yet what shall I choose?  I do not know!  I am torn between the two: I desire to depart and be with Christ which is better by far; but it is more necessary for you that I remain in the body.  Convinced of this, I know that I will remain, and I will continue with all of you for your progress and joy in the faith.  Philippians 1:21-25

Paul knew that he had an eternity with Christ.  He knew that this was much better than the things the world had to offer.  However, he did not fixate on this to the point of losing perspective.  He knew that his life (by the grace of God) had impact.  He knew that his life made a difference.  Have you ever met those people who were "so heavenly minded that they were no earthly good"?  They are so focused on the reward of salvation that they forget the world around them.  There are also those who come to Christ, but struggle to give up the things they want to do.  They always had done XYZ in the past...and they don't want to give that up.  Salvation is not about self.  It is actually the end of self.  We must be able to "die to self".  The end of our own wants & desires...and considering what Christ has called us to do.  Sometimes we're afraid that we'll lose who we are if we go "all in" for the Lord.  The end of our old self is the beginning of a new adventure.  We will find out more of who we truly are than we ever imagined.  The end is the beginning of something new and wonderful.  We can only get there if we say we are finished with the old self.

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