Words That Offer an Eternal Life
This post is provided by Dan Nickel, Lay Leader, Godfrey First UMC:
John Updike’s novel, In the Beauty of the Lilies, covers four generations of an American family over an 80 year period in the 20th Century. Over the span of four generations, the Christian faith within the family wanes starting with the family’s patriarch, a one-time minister who dies a non-believer.
The granddaughter becomes a famous Hollywood actress that Updike writes into Hollywood’s history of the 1940s-1970s. With her movie career waning as she aged and people forgot who she was or what films she starred in, she realized her life’s work was not timeless:
She had been mulched in — what had once seemed to her absolute immortality turned out to be a slow dissolution within a confused mass of perishing images like a colorful mountain of compressed and rotting garbage.
In John 6, Jesus preached difficult messages and many followers left Him. Christ turned to the Twelve and asked if they were going to leave him too? Peter’s reply is one for the ages, “Lord, to whom would we go? You have the words of eternal life.” (John 6:68)
In this culture of TMZ and social media saturated with clicks, selfies, pursuing ‘likes,’ instant fame and instant images, all roads eventually lead to a dead end. What people think are ropes to grab permanence, importance and immorality end up ropes of sand instead. There comes the point when one’s life must detect that which is temporary and that which is permanent. When it comes to permanence, all roads lead to the only One whose words offer an eternal life.
Don’t let the culture of “a confused mass of perishing images” gorged with “a colorful mountain of compressed and rotting garbage” eventually “mulch” you in where you think the world is your savior. Take the defining act of life and let Christ’s words be the vehicle that carries your life and accept His offer of eternal life.