Monday, 14 May 2012

Resolution 18: Getting perspective...

18. Resolved, to live so, at all times, as I think is best in my devout frames, and when I have clearest notion of things of the gospel, and another world.
- Jonathan Edwards -

"Live at all times with your eyes fixed on the gospel, and on the hope of heaven"... that's what Edwards is exhorting us to do here. Two little phrases that are short to say, but huge to live... and so easily laid by the wayside. Edwards is saying that the best way to live (in his "devout frames") is when the gospel is clear in his head, and heaven is real in his heart...

Getting the Gospel clear
When it comes to the gospel, C J Mahaney says, "Never move on; never lay it aside." All of life revolves around understanding the gospel... it should impact on everyday life - my choices, my thought-processes, my words and my actions. Christ died for my sins, once and for all, the righteous for the unrighteous, to bring me to God (1 Peter 3:18) While we were still sinners, Christ died for us (Romans 5:8). That affects my attitude to the daily tasks of homemaking (Christ joyfully laid down his life for me... even though I didn't deserve it, how much more should I joyfully "lay down" my life for my daughter as I change ANOTHER nappy!), it affects my self-esteem (Society tells me that being a stay-at-home mum is not as admirable as a successful professional career, Jesus tells me the servanthood is real greatness), it affects my attitude to my sin (my doubt and self-criticism would tell me that I am sometimes too messed up to be acceptable to God, Jesus tells me that he died for me while I was sinful... that nothing I have done or will do is too much for him to forgive). The gospel should be the lens through which I view all of life... All too often, the world's wisdom is how I view life. Jesus calls me to something different...

Getting heaven in focus
So often my head is filled with things that feel so very vital, and yet are so unimportant in the grand scheme of things. I woke up, the other night, at 4am, worrying about what my husband was going to say between songs at church the next day - RIDICULOUS... a) he was going to be saying it, not me b) what was I going to be doing about it at 4 in the morning!! Yet I lay in bed for an hour worrying myself silly about it!!! Sometimes the little things in life really get all our attention, other times the issues are big and overwhelming and real, heartbreakingly real; heaven speaks into both of those situations. It helps me let go of the silly little overwhelming things and says "they don't matter - fix your eyes on what does matter and entrust the little things to God. Heaven helps me stand firm in the big, hard issues of life and says "this pain is temporary, I have a plan for you and this season isn't forever"

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