Those who believe in the Son have eternal life, but those who do not obey the Son will never have life. God’s anger stays on them.” John 3:36 (NCV)

“Ah, this is living.”

What would it take for you to say this? No bills? Lounging on the beach in Hawaii with no schedule, no responsibility and no sign of it coming to an end? Perhaps having a perfect spouse, three children in Medical School and a clean bill of health for you?

When we think of living, our first thoughts often turn to personal comfort and a bright prospectus for tomorrow. We all know people or have heard of people who have worked their entire lives preparing for retirement only to have something devastating happen to them just before or after they retire.

During the great depression hundreds of people jumped from buildings and bridges when the realized they’d ‘lost everything’. The real tragedy was in the lives of the women whose husbands didn’t come home or the children whose Daddies would never tuck them in again. Little boys were without their favorite person to play catch or shoot hoops. Little girls would never have ‘daddy’ to walk them down the aisle.

Jesus says (my paraphrase), “If you put your relationship with me in first place you will not only have the strength to make it through the battles of life here on earth, you will find that true living comes after you die! If on the other hand you put the things of earth (money, toys & pleasure) in first place, you will never experience life as I intended for you.”

Pursue the important things of life. The most important things in your life won’t show up in your checkbook, your garage or your family room. The will be etched on the very tablet of your heart. It doesn’t matter how much you’ve failed. It’s not important what you think you’ve lost here on earth. The important things like your faith in Christ and the power of his Spirit in your life are things no one can take from you.

Keeping your focus on what Christ has done for you makes all the other things less important. With Him as your guide, no matter what you are going through, you will be able to say that because of Jesus love, grace and forgiveness, “This is living!”

PRAYER: Jesus I confess to you that too much of my life is spent trying to make things work here on earth. I’ve neglected the important things like family, and most importantly my relationship with you. Empower me with your Spirit to build on the important things. I know in my heart that true living comes after I die. In your name, Amen.