Let the righteous one rejoice in the Lord
and take refuge in him!
Let all the upright in heart exult! ~Psalm 64:10 ESV
. . . they desire a better country, that is, a heavenly one. Therefore God is not ashamed to be called their God, for he has prepared for them a city. ~Hebrews 11:16 ESV
The righteous rejoice. Not because present circumstances offer great wealth or boast comfort or fame. But, because God.
His refuge provides a protection in the midst of whatever this life brings along. And so, we march on. At times with heavy hearts, at times with great gladness, but always with a sense of anticipation.
An interesting story recently came my way. A young, Christian lady suffering from a fatal illness prepared for her imminent death. She made one request of the pastor in their occasional meetings prior to her homegoing. She wanted to be buried with a fork in her right hand.
As the curious mourners passed her casket all wondered why. The pastor took the podium to answer the question everyone was asking. He explained, “She remembered how as a young girl special meals always ended with a reminder to ‘save your fork’ because although dinner was over, the best was yet to come. Her clutched fork bears the same reminder – a symbol of the faith she lived by, and in death will celebrate. The best is yet to come.”
What steady confidence the Old Testament saints walked with! They faithfully followed God’s commands, looking ahead to what remained unfulfilled, but trusting a promise.
I share their faith, but with the privilege of looking back at the promise of a Messiah fulfilled. Now I too look ahead to a better country, a heavenly one. I seek to live not by worldly goals, but stretching for those that reach into the eternal life after this one.
God, thank you for your protection, your faithful love, your perfect plan. Help me to lock in that eternal perspective and live with the powerful, driving reminder that the best is yet to come. ~Amen