My apologies for the long delay in returning to my keyboard. What can I say? LIFE! And in consideration of the fact that “Life is what happens when you’re busy making plans, ” I have been provoked to consider what is in my life that really matters. Of course, my relationship with God, my family and friends — all of those things are important. Yet, in the context of the Kingdom of God and functioning in the purpose God has for me, I have been reflecting on what I’ve focused my energy and attention upon.
I say this because Paul made it very clear that the work we do here needs to be built upon the foundation that is Yeshua the Messiah. When we build upon that Rock, not even the gates of hell will be able to stand against us. Yet, as we build, it is important that we do so in accordance with the will of God and with those elements that are fireproof — in other words, things that are eternal. As Paul told the Corinthians:
Each one’s work will become clear; for the Day will declare it, because it will be revealed by fire; and the fire will test each one’s work, of what sort it is. If anyone’s work which he has built on it endures, he will receive a reward. If anyone’s work is burned, he will suffer loss. (1 Corinthians 3:13-15)
It seems that the point is, not everything we do for the Kingdom will survive the test of fire, meaning that some of things we think we’re doing for the Kingdom aren’t for the Kingdom at all. At the very least, they aren’t in concert with God’s will, and consequently, not worthy to remain. It would be heartbreaking to think that all of our hard work might go up in smoke, and so before that day, it is needful for us to reflect on what we’re doing and why we’re doing it — did God tell us to do it? Or did we think it would be a good idea?
In a parallel vein, Yeshua said we should be careful to lay up “treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also” (Matthew 6:20-21). Again, the emphasis is placed on valuing those things that are eternal and not so much the temporal things — things that are destined to be consumed in the fire. I admit that sometimes it is hard not to focus on earthly things considering we live in a physical world, nevertheless, our hearts must be so that we are able to prioritize our lives in order to conform to the Will of our Father.
As I write this, we have just entered into the Hebrew month of Elul which initiates the forty day period of teshuvah (repentance) in anticipation of the fall Holy Days of Yom Teruah (Trumpets) and Yom Kippur (atonement). In short, these forty days are supposed to be dedicated to introspection and self-examination. In that light, it is appropriate and altogether proper that we should assess our life and evaluate just what is important to us and especially as it relates to the Kingdom of God. Are we building with precious metals or with wood, hay and stubble? One day everyone will know the answer, but perhaps we should resolve the issue today and take measures that result in reward and allows us to know that our work here is guaranteed to be fireproof.
Blessings and Shalom,
Bill & Beth