I love watching football. It fascinates me how as soon as the referee whistles for the game to kick off, all the players in the pitch strive hard and make every effort to reach their goal: winning the game. During those 90 minutes they have only one aim: to win the match. It amazes me how these players are ready to sacrifice anything, first to be chosen to make part of the team, then to keep their place in the team and finally to win the match. The enthusiasm and the joy on the faces of all the players as soon as one of their team mates score demonstrate the effort and the toil invested.
Now that the football mania is put on hold, the London Olympics 2012 are next. Danny Boyle, the artistic director for the games, in a recent interview said that they are doing their best to transform the Olympic Stadium into a “rural idyll”. The athletes have long been preparing for this golden moment in their career. They train and sweat to improve their performance but most of all they long for the moment where on the podium, as the national anthem is sung, they receive the gold medal.
If we look around us we quickly discover that almost everyone has an aim: students are very busy and sometimes anxious to get the grades they need to proceed with their studies or to find a job; some of our friends are painstakingly attending the gym and are extra careful to their diet to lose weight; the happy couple are working till late to have their dream house ready etc etc
What is your aim in life?
What ‘on earth’ are we here for? What drives your life? Anything can drive our life: from a painful memory to a heartfelt desire, from a heartbreaking regret to a wonderful experience. However the great news is that we were created to last forever. Abraham Lincoln had said, “Surely God would not have created such a being as man to exist only for a day! No, no, man was made for immortality”. Therefore let’s stop living for the moment and start living for eternity. Here on earth we are only pilgrims, our true destination is heaven. Consequently, let our one aim be heaven.
As we take our daily decisions, let us keep this in mind: we are citizens of heaven. Our one and only aim should be to reach our destination. Life on earth is like a school preparing us for heaven. Our desire to reach heaven should be reflected in our daily life and daily decisions. Just like the player and the athlete who strive and toil for that moment of glory, we should continuously keep in mind the crown of life. Well done good and faithful servant (Matt 25,21) are the words Jesus will say to us as we meet him face to face. It is the moment when we will realize that we are finally home!
Living life here on earth from the eternal perspective will make all the difference not just for us but also for those around us. We start thinking more about storing riches in heaven than storing riches here on earth, we are willing to die to self in order to live for eternity, we embrace the cross knowing that this will lead us to the glorious resurrection. Suffering, pain, disappointments are still difficult to bear but let’s hold on to the words of Paul, “I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us” (Rom 8,18).
But, as it is written, “What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man conceived, what God has prepared for those who love him,” God has revealed to us through the Spirit. For the Spirit searches everything, even the depths of God. 1 Cor 2,9-10
Rick Warren – The Purpose Driven Life