What’s the worst thing that could ever happen to a devout Christian in this life? I often take that road of inquiry to divert stressful situations. The Lord visits “the bottom line” in me to cool the fever of my foreboding brow and redirect my focus. Thanksgiving is a fabulous coolant also.
I’m watching 50 approach, and I’m thinking about how well my mother did as the years lifted her off the shore of youth and ushered her into gray sea bubbles. Like pure ocean, she remained cool, salty, and refreshing.
So the worst thing that could happen to any of us who love Christ is that we die for our faith. That’s actually not a bad thing. In a huge way, it’s the best thing that could ever happen to us. So, the worst thing the world can do is make all of our dreams come true by sending us to Heaven. We’re going there someday anyway, aren’t we? Some have been given glimpses ahead of time and nothing in those experiences has even slightly dampened the desire, holy expectation, and hope for that city whose Maker and Builder is God. That’s what awaits all of those who put their hope in Jesus; that’s what awaits me.
Eh, 50’s a number, right? Just like 48. I wonder if Methuselah said that about turning 900? Or even 69 years afterward when he celebrated his last birthday just 31 years short of living a millennium? Here’s where I definitely default to thanksgiving like I noted earlier. Here’s where I encourage myself in Jesus by saying how extremely grateful I am to be 48 and loving Christ. I am thankful beyond words for the darling example of my mother trusting God through thick and thin and growing older, beautifully. She’s what I will look like… a Godly woman who is half Cherokee and Blackfeet Native American (though mom was only Cherokee; the Blackfeet blood I inherited from my earthly father), part African, Celtic, and French.
I want to continue living for the Godhead – for Abba, Jesus, and Holy Spirit – and I want to die enlisted in God’s army, absolutely. Let me die in the army of the Lord, belonging to Him and no one else. That’s well worth the wrinkles of 48, 49, and 50 (and 969 for that matter!); and every ending is a new beginning in Christ Jesus. Imagine being 80 before crying out to Pharaoh, “Let my people go!” Imagine being 90 before a son opens your womb!
“God has made me to laugh, and all who hear will laugh with me.” (Genesis 21:6)
There truly is no “worst thing” that can happen in Jesus. Bless His Holy Name!