Thursday, September 15, 2011

Dying to Glorify God...Literally!

I want to talk about death and dying. Wow, what a way to start a conversation and welcome to my Blog! I have been reminded of death a lot lately. Our troops are being killed in the Middle East, terrorist are still blowing people up, the obituary page is still full every morning when I open the paper. Just a week or so ago I read where Steve Jobs was stepping down from his role of CEO at Apple due to his health. Rumors are swirling that he is knocking on deaths door. And just this morning I read the following passage:
John 21: 18, 19 - 18 I tell you the truth, when you were younger you dressed yourself and went where you wanted; but when you are old you will stretch out your hands, and someone else will dress you and lead you where you do not want to go.” 19 Jesus said this to indicate the kind of death by which Peter would glorify God.
As I sat there thinking about these verses I thought about how we can become so obsessed with living a life that brings God glory that we don't even consider that our dying can do the same. We become so attached to this life and the things this world has to offer that we dread the thought of dying and leaving it all behind. Look at what Steve Jobs said at a commencement speech he made to the graduates at Stanford in 2005:
No one wants to die. Even people who want to go to heaven don't want to die to get there.
Yet Christ said that Peter would glorify God through his death. In the verses above Christ tells Peter that he will die and not only will he die but he will die by crucifixion. I think I and many of you hope we die in our sleep. We simply lay our head on our pillow one night and wake up in heaven. But listen to what happened to Believers who were living a life that was pleasing to God, Believers who were spreading the Gospel, who were establishing the church.
Hebrews 11: 36-38 - 36 Some faced jeers and flogging, while still others were chained and put in prison. 37 They were stoned; they were sawed in two; they were put to death by the sword. They went about in sheepskins and goatskins, destitute, persecuted and mistreated— 38 the world was not worthy of them. They wandered in deserts and mountains, and in caves and holes in the ground.
The life Christians have been called to live is not one of ease and luxury. It is not one that we can simply put on cruise control and hope that when we die it happens in our sleep. The life we have been called to live is one that may cost us our possessions, our family, and possibly our lives. Living a life that pleases God is important but I do not believe it is any more important than dying in a way that will bring glory to God.

1 comment:

  1. You have taken on an incredibly difficult task with this post, and your approach and response to it is a blessing. I'm glad I found your blog, read it and shared this post. Shanyn (Strawberry Roan)