The Best is Yet to Come|
Life is a series of milestones, accomplishments, and sometimes failures. For most people, the progress of life is mostly the same – birth, childhood, maturity, marriage, children, grandchildren, great-grandchildren, and death. Along the way, certain events punctuate the stages of life – birthdays, graduations, weddings, anniversaries, retirements, etc. In our spiritual development, there are also achievements that mark our progress – learning the Scriptures, becoming faithful, obeying the gospel, serving the Lord, becoming a teacher, growing in the grace and knowledge of the Lord, and more. There are also difficulties in life that come to us all – illnesses, injuries, death of loved ones, hardships, failures, and disappointments. Altogether, these are the elements that tell a life’s story.
Regardless of whether most of these milestones are in front of you or behind you, if you are faithful in the Lord Jesus, then you may say, "The best is yet to come.” You may look beyond life in this world to the fulfillment of God’s promises to the faithful in Christ Jesus, which are far greater than anything this world can offer. When the apostle John saw a vision of the new Jerusalem, which is the glorious, spiritual city of the redeemed in Christ, he heard the voice of God say, "He who overcomes will inherit these things, and I will be his God and he will be My son” (Rev. 21:7). What a wonderful future awaits those who overcome this world! "Who is the one who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God?” (1John 5:5).
If you are in the twilight years of life and most of life’s milestones are behind you, do not be discouraged, but hope in Jesus. Your memories are sweet, but they can also bring sadness. If you are widowed or perhaps have even seen your own children pass out of this life, then you may feel sad and alone. Please don’t give up your joy, but know that "now salvation is nearer to us than when we [first] believed” (Rom. 13:11). None of us can live on earth forever, nor should we want to stay in this sinful place. Instead, the older we grow, the more we should rejoice over the nearness of our eternal goal. Share the words of Paul, who anticipated his own death and said, "I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith; in the future there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous Judge, will award to me on that day; and not only to me, but also to all who have loved His appearing” (2Tim. 4:7-8). In your bright future with the Lord, the best is yet to come.
If you are in the middle of life, take time to enjoy your days, but don’t lose sight of the greater time ahead of you. It is all too easy to get so wrapped up in our busy lives that we forget what the goal of life really is. Therefore, let us focus on the goal set by Paul, who said his ambition was to know Jesus and attain to the likeness of His resurrection (Phil. 3:8-11). With that goal, he described his attitude, which we should all share:
Not that I have already obtained it or have already become perfect, but I press on so that I may lay hold of that for which also I was laid hold of by Christ Jesus. Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus. (Phil. 3:12-14)
Life at this stage may be good, it may be busy, and it may be hard at times, but we must not forget that the best is yet to come.
If you are young and still looking forward to most of your life, then "remember also your Creator in the days of your youth” (Eccl. 12:1) so that you may be with Him when life on earth is over. There are many goals for you to accomplish in the future, but the best goal will be realized when this life is over. Death may be the farthest thing from your mind, but you must realize that life is short. "Yet you do not know what your life will be like tomorrow. You are just a vapor that appears for a little while and then vanishes away” (Jas. 4:14). Therefore, make the most of the great opportunity you have to serve the Lord throughout your whole life, and know that the best is yet to come.
In order to believe that the best is yet to come for you, you must have a great measure of faith in the Lord. Your eyes can see the greatness of the things of this world, but your eyes cannot see the greatest things of all. Depending on your current stage of life, the achievements of your life in this world are either in front of you or behind you, but you must look beyond all of these things to see that the best is yet to come for you. Therefore, let us "look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal” (2Cor. 4:18). Your anticipation of the wonderful, eternal things of God is your faith, your hope, and your joy. Regardless of what this life has brought or will bring for you, if you have faith in Christ, then the best is yet to come.
Stacey E. Durham
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