Sunday, February 8, 2015

naked on my deathbed

I came into this world naked.
I entered with no money in my bank account, no food in my fridge, no treasures to my name. I want to go out of this world the exact same way.  

I don't want to die surrounded by all the stuff I've worked for years to collect. I don't want to have any of anything left, because I want to have given it all away. 
I want to have given all of me away.

For 27 years, time has been flying by me.
I know it's not going to slow down and I only have a few moments left. I refuse to spend my last few moments collecting stuff that's going to rot. We work so hard to make so much money to buy so much nice stuff, and then what? We die. Temporary, temporary, so very temporary is all this stuff we can see. All of it! Our insurance policies, our jackets, our shoes, our beauty, our cars, our jobs, our guitars, our collectibles, our computers, our makeup, our muscles -- 
 none of it is going to last. 

So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal. 
-2 Corinthians‬ 4:18

Let's get practical. What does it look like in the day-to-day to live focused on the unseen (the eternal) rather than the seen (the temporary)? 
Maybe it looks like selling your car, buying a beat-up-but-can-get-you-down-the-road junker in its place, and giving all the difference in money to a ministry that is preaching the Gospel to people who have never heard it. 
Maybe it looks like cutting out hours of your TV time to spend those hours praying for your unsaved family members. 
Maybe it looks like giving half of your life's savings away to the struggling family in your church. 

Ask God to show you what it looks like. 
But be braced for what He'll say. Because He'll say something and it will probably be pretty uncomfortable and not feel so great.  

If you know me, you're aware of how big of a deal I make out of birthdays. I hate to say it, but especially my birthday. This is for a few reasons. Like, I love icecream, getting presents, having people pay attention to me, and being alive. But one of the more important reasons I love the time of year when my birthday rolls around is because it reminds me that I'm going to be dead soon. Every year, February 9 shows up, and every year, I get a year closer to death. February 9 will keep rolling around, I'll keep saying goodbye to my years, and then I'll die.

Today is my last day of being 26. That's right, my birthday eve. I just celebrated over free pancakes at IHOP (they give them free if you sign up, so you should). As I spend a lot of time eating great food and telling the world around me that it's my birthday (or close to it), I am reminded that I only have a little bit of time left. I don't want to waste that time on the things that are quickly vanishing, but on the things that will last forever. 
Here they are: 
1) The connection I have with the Maker of the universe
2) The eternal impact that I can make on human souls 

And that sums it up. 

If I were to live all my days 100% eternally minded, I'd give most of everything I own away, spend every dime I made on helping other human beings, and spend every waking hour getting to know Jesus better and helping others do the same.  

I'm not 100% eternally minded yet, but I'm getting there one day at a time and God is patient. (Oh how patient He is!)

God's Son lived on the earth as a man once. 
He was naked on His deathbed. 
By the time His death came, He had nothing left in this world. 
He'd given all of Himself away. 

I want to be like Him. 

Here are some ideas to help us get closer to being naked on our deathbeds, with nothing to our names:

- read books about eternity, faith, people who've lived courageous lives for Jesus, generosity, selflessness, etc.
- go to a Bible-believing church every week
- read the Bible every day
- give our favorite material possession away
- stop spending so much money on ourselves and start spending it on people who need help 
- give our second favorite material possession away
- ask God to show us how we can become more generous
- ask God to do with us whatever He wants 

I've got a plan to lose it all
I've got a contract pending on eternity
If I haven't already given it away
I've got a plan to lose it all