Thursday, November 20, 2008


Anticipation is what often gives motivation to life. If we keep our mind on the goal ahead we have an easier time with the hard places between where we are and where we must go to reach our goal.
Paul said in Phil 3:13 Brothers and sisters, I know that I have not yet reached that goal, but there is one thing I always do. Forgetting the past and straining toward what is ahead,
14 I keep trying to reach the goal and get the prize for which God called me through Christ to the life above. (NEW CENTURY VERSION)

By the way I learned something about anticipation while hunting deer this past week. It rained, it was cold and damp, I slept on less than a comfortable bed, only one night did my c-pap machine work properly, so my rest was not the best, and I went the whole five days without a shower or shave. In short there were some hard places I had to go through. Why did I do it? It was for the prize, a buck deer. I even noticed that the loud sound of the rifle when I shot my buck did not bother my ears, and I did not even notice the recoil from the rifle. I was so focused on the goal, other things just did not matter. It was the anticipation of reaching the goal that kept me going.

My ultimate goal in life is to become like Jesus, and then one day stand before Him and hear Him say to me, "Well done!" My anticipation of becoming more like Jesus each day, of being more effective in His kingdom work, and one day entering my heavenly home, keeps me going.

Living for Christ is not like staying in a first class hotel, always eating at five-star restaurants, riding in limousines, and flying first class. Paul said to one of the churches he started on his first missionary journey in Acts 14:22 "...that we must through much tribulation enter into the kingdom of God." (KJV)

Paul also says in Romans 8:18-21 That's why I don't think there's any comparison between the present hard times and the coming good times. The created world itself can hardly wait for what's coming next. Everything in creation is being more or less held back. God reins it in until both creation and all the creatures are ready and can be released at the same moment into the glorious times ahead. Meanwhile, the joyful anticipation deepens. (The MESSAGE)

Someone criticized a pastor for focusing on the future. They said, "Why do you preach on 'Pie in the sky by and by,' when what we need is to know how to live in 'the nasty now and now?'" The preacher replied "it is the anticipation of the future hope I have in Christ that helps me make it through the nasty now and now." That pastor was not denying the reality of the present nor the importance of practical Biblical help as to how to live in the now, but He was saying that much of the motivation for living for Christ in the now is the anticipation of the glorious future God has prepared for his children.


1 comment:

Jim said...

Again, "right on target"! Good analogy and a much needed reminder as we "camp in the cold wilderness" of this world, ANTICIPATING the warm comfort of our Lord's welcome and forever home.