Therefore we do not lose heart. Though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day. For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal. -- 2Corinthians 4: 16-18 (NIV)
It is said that we cannot survive one minute in this life
without hope. When we see the scourges of drug abuse, depression and suicide in
this country what we are seeing manifest is the hopelessness the enemy inflicts
upon people. The hopelessness the promises of the world deliver. The
hopelessness that comes from our sin nature. But glory be to God Almighty who
saved us from our sin nature, empowers us to overcome the world, and equips us
to resist the devil! Yet despite these facts for believers, so often we still
see Christians walking without the power Christ appropriated for us on
Working backwards in the text we see that God always wants us to realize that what we see around us every single day is merely temporary but what we cannot see is eternal. We have been duped into viewing this life as somehow being long when the Bible explicitly tells us it is not:
"How frail is humanity! How short is life, how full of trouble! We blossom like a flower and then wither. Like a passing shadow, we quickly disappear. -- Job 14: 1-2 (NLT)
I understand the difficulty in focusing on the eternal because we live life in the temporary but we either believe what we believe or we don't! The eternal life is not some vague concept waiting for us at the end of some harrowing journey. It is available right now for every believer of Jesus Christ if we would only step into it and walk in it every day. That starts with the realization that whatever we come across in this world that seeks to drag us down, beat us down, or keep us down is by its very nature -- temporary. It will not last! Do we not realize who we are in Christ?
But you are not like that, for you are a chosen people. You are royal priests, a holy nation, God's very own possession. As a result, you can show others the goodness of God, for he called you out of the darkness into his wonderful light. -- 1Peter 2: 9 (NLT)
That darkness that seeks to envelop us sometimes in this life we have already been called out of. We do not need to walk in it as the world does. We are the chosen people of the Creator of the entire universe! We are a royal priesthood of the High Priest Jesus Christ! We are God's very own possession.
Once we have established that what we see everyday is temporary and what we cannot see is eternal, the next step is to fix our eyes on the right things. Where is our focus beloved? That is what leads us into darkness. Our focus is what leads us into despair. Our focus is what keeps us in the bondage Christ died to deliver us from. That is because our propensity is to focus on the temporary things of this life. We focus on the financial problems instead of on God our provider. We focus on the doctor's report instead of God our healer. We focus on the shackles instead of He who frees us from them! What we fix ourselves on is what we take into ourselves. The Apostle Paul implores us: