What event in the immediate would change your perspective of the eternal, what might happen now that would cause you not perhaps to question the sovereignty of God, but your own personal stance for the Lord.
My wife and I do not carry or own cell phones, our telephone stills hangs on the wall, and we have an answering machine, something that I change the message on occasionally just for the fun of it. At the moment the reply to the caller is, “If you can’t decide if what your calling about is important or not, why don’t you go ahead and leave a message, and we’ll make that decision for you.” There are at the time of the writing of this letter to you approximately five billion cell phones around the planet, and although of course I have not had an opportunity to speak with each and every one of these individuals, those that I have spoken to about their reason for owning one almost always comes down to this answer, “It is just in case of an emergency.”
The emergency is nearly always one of a medical kind, what if my wife is in an accident, what if my kid gets hurt, what if fill in the blank. Cell phones, for the most part, seem to be for the “what ifs,” but when I observe the use of many of them, they seem to be for different forms of video viewing, to look at different apps, and to listen to music, and of course, to keep in touch with others, whether it be through texting or on social media sites, so, where’s the emergency? The immediate is what is important to these who have become addicted to their phones, for the phone portion is the least used part of these devices, entertainment is the reason for the purchase, and for the continued use of these instruments of convenience.
I must of course answer the question you are pondering here, just what would happen if there was a so-called emergency in our lives, what if my lovely wife is in an accident with our vehicle, what if something happens to me and she is not at our house to answer the phone, what if she could not be notified immediately, what then. I can easily see how certain individuals might need to carry a phone with them at all times, doctors perhaps, emergency workers, other various fields where human life could be lost if there was no immediate response capabilities, but I do not think that the majority of these instruments are being used in this capacity. And so, what of my wife and I?
The emergencies are real, for those who live in the immediate, but not for those who live in the eternal. In our instance, in the life of my wonderful wife and I, what we have a need to say to each other, we have already said, there are no “death-bed” words waiting to be said, there is no need for a final goodbye, we know full well when we part company nearly every day that that day may fully well be the last day that we will be in each other’s presence until we meet again in the kingdom of our Lord. For those who cannot, or will not live in the eternal, for you must remember, only those who can truly say that they are of the children of God can say that they should be living in the eternal, at least in the knowledge of the eternal glory that awaits us, but for those who are not saved, the immediate is all they have.
We are not to think as the lost do, death is to have no sting for us, (1st Cor. 15:55) the grief that we feel when one of our loved saved ones goes home to glory before us is the grief of selfishness, a loss that cannot fully be appreciated until we are reunited with them. This is why the lost live in the immediate, their concept of the eternal is the same one that we knew before we came to Christ, one of fear, unknowing, and trepidation. For the lost, death is the ultimate enemy, survival is the only goal, and inside each and every one of them, they know for a fact that this event will occur in their life, and so everything must be done in the immediate, only for the temporal, and in a sense of urgency.
My friends, everything that we do is to be for the eternal, the immediate is only that thing that reminds us that we are living in the flesh in the temporal, the transitory, that place that will fade away and eventually be destroyed. Those that you love that also love the Lord, you will see again, and that time frame may seem like an eternity the day of their passing, but when kept in the perspective of the eternal, it is but a breath away. One of the purposes of the immediate, this life that we live here for Christ, is to show us, as much as we can comprehend, just how long forever is, just how long eternity is. What then could possibly be an emergency for those who know Christ as Savior?
I mean this in no disrespectful way, but if you do not make it to the hospital before your wife dies, do you think that when she arrives in heaven a few moments later that she is going to hold that against you? Do you believe that your opinion of yourself will change in an eternal nature because you were not there, unless you are a physician, and even in some cases that would not do any good, exactly what more than emotion support could you give her, and why wasn’t that emotional support given long before that day? Deaths sting has no hold on the believer in Jesus Christ as Lord, and should not bring any long-term grief or thoughts of missed opportunities to the one left behind. You will see her again, you will be with her for an eternity, one-million years from now we will not have even begun to get started giving our Lord the glory for His incredible gifts.
Why do so many who profess Christ spend so much time and effort in the here and now, why has their perspective been placed upon the immediate instead of the eternal, who is blinding them to their eternal purpose, and caused them to forego what is waiting for what is here and now, how can anyone who calls Christ Lord say “To live is Christ, to die is gain,” (Phil. 1:21) when they are spending more time being concerned with their house payment, what they will wear tomorrow, or the possibility of an upcoming emergency. I stand by my statement, “Only those who are heavenly minded are of any earthly good.”
“What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost, which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own?” (1st Cor. 6:19) You do not have any time for the immediate my friends, all that we do is to be based and thought about for the glory of the Lord, the only immediate concern you should have is am I being obedient to the Lord in what He has entrusted to me, am I pleasing in His sight, am I daily exalting His name above the heavens. If “we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose,” (Rom. 8:28) then exactly what would you call an emergency, what in this world would you consider a crisis that could take even for a moment your eyes off of the eternal?
“Beloved, let us love one another: for love is of God; and every one that loveth is born of God, and knoweth God.” (1st John 4:7) Do not wait for what you might consider an emergency, tell those that you truly love how you feel, do not presume that they know so, if you do not, not only will they possibly die without that knowledge, but you will live the rest of your life in the land of “I wish I would have,” and trust me my friends, that is a land of incredible sorrow. Stop reading this and go tell them right now, the immediate will be taken care of for all of eternity.