Sunset, Sunrise

Today, I am grateful for life. Life is precious and transient, and – despite our best intentions – tomorrow isn’t promised for any of us. We must treasure each day that we have been given, and see it for what it is – a gift from God. 

I was saddened to learn of the tragic and unexpected death of a strong man of God in our community. I did not know him well, but in the interactions I had with him, I experienced him as a man of deep integrity, character, and profound faith. I understood that he was experiencing some health problems, but I was nonetheless stunned to learn that he had passed away. 

This was his sunset.

But oh, what hope we have as followers of Christ. This man’s sunrise with the Lord was just around the corner – no more than a moment after he breathed his last on earth, and immediately entered into the presence of the Lord in eternity. This was his sunrise – the continuation of his journey with the Lord, uninterrupted by the blight of sin and death – and it will never end. 

So, as I said, I’m grateful today for life – life on this earth, and also for the promised and oft-hoped-for peace and joy that await us on the other side of eternity, in God’s presence.

If if any of this sounds surprising or unrealistic to you, then take a moment and read Revelation 21:3-7 (NLT):

I heard a loud shout from the throne, saying, “Look, God’s home is now among His people! He will live with them, and they will be His people. God Himself will be with them. He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. All these things are gone forever.” And the One sitting on the throne said, “Look, I am making everything new!” And then He said to me, “Write this down, for what I tell you is trustworthy and true.” And He also said, “It is finished! I am the Alpha and the Omega—the Beginning and the End. To all who are thirsty I will give freely from the springs of the water of life. All who are victorious will inherit all these blessings, and I will be their God, and they will be My children.”

‭‭What a glorious sunrise!

Here is my prayer for today: Dear Jesus, thank You for filling my body with the breath of life each day. Remind me that each day that I’m given is a gift from You, and that tomorrow is not promised to any of us. Help me to live in a way that honors You each day, and remind me to keep short accounts with others, so that I can stay in right relationship with You. Thank You for the good plans that You have made for me in this life, as well as on the other side of eternity.

I also want to thank You for the life of a dear man of God who is now with You in heaven. Thank You for his example, for his heart to serve You, and for the way that he touched and influenced so many lives. May his family deeply experience the comfort and peace that only You can provide during this challenging time. In Your name I pray, Amen.

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