Life At Its Best: Plan for the most important day of your life
Special events require a lot of preparation. I first realized this when it came time for my wedding day. Like most guys, I didn't think much about all the little details that go into getting ready for a day like this.
Tamara, on the other hand, started planning months in advance. She spent hours flipping through her favorite wedding magazines, looking for the perfect theme, colors and decorations.
Planning our wedding became her top priority. She knew it would be one of the biggest days of our lives, so she wanted to make sure she did everything she could to make it a great experience.
That's exactly how we should feel about heaven. The biggest day of our lives will be the day we stand before the Lord and enter into eternity. I don't know about you, but I want to stand before him proud of how I lived my life. I want to know that the priorities I lived with on Earth were ones that created benefits, not just now, but for all eternity.
Living with right priorities starts by living with an eternal perspective. We see this in the life of the apostle Paul. Throughout his ministry he faced much persecution, yet he continued to spread Christ's message.
In Philippians 3:15 he said, "I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Jesus Christ." Paul understood that there was more to life than what he experienced on earth. He knew that no temporary pain he'd endure could compare to the eternal prize of heaven.
He also knew that living eternity-minded required doing things he didn't always want to do. In 1 Corinthians 15:32 he said, "I have to die to myself every day."
I'm sure there were times when he didn't feel like getting up in front of people and preaching the Gospel. But he recognized that if he was going to fulfill God's will, he had to die to his own desires.
God has called each of us to live with priorities that lead to great eternal blessing, and it starts by getting a clear picture of our goal on this earth. We must understand why we are here and allow that understanding to drive us to pursue things that have not only temporary, but eternal value.
Then, we must choose to die to our own desires and seek to fulfill the desires of God's heart. It's not easy or something we learn overnight, but it's a very important decision we must make daily in order to fulfill our mission on this Earth.
So, I encourage you today to ask yourself what you're really living for. Evaluate your priorities. Then decide to live with a clear perspective of heaven and allow its reality to push you to invest in things that will matter for eternity. A life of instant gratification may be fun for a while, but pursuing a life of eternal significance always leads to a more fulfilling future.
Jim Graff is the Senior Pastor of Faith Family Church in Victoria. faithfamilyvictoria.com.