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Before And After

Before And After

15 August 2010

Today’s Reading: Jeremiah 18-20, Psalm 93; John 17

Scripture:

4 I glorified you on earth by completing down to the last detail what you assigned me to do. 5 And now, Father, glorify me with your very own splendor, the very splendor I had in your presence before there was a world. (John 17:4-5 MSG)

I don’t want to be too mystical here, but if we remove the mystical from Christianity, all we’ve got left is religion. Anyhow, I wonder what it was like for Jesus, a 33 year-old Jewish man who was raised in the sticks, had never visited a major world capital, and had seen very little of the world, to have in his spirit (Spirit?) the memory of creation. Inside Jesus the Christ was the memory of speaking the universe into being, of forming the stars and planets, of bringing life to the earth. Wow! Or should I say Awesome!

Jesus the Son of God was from somewhere else and was completing his assignment here on earth and was soon to be on his way home. Jesus the son of man was about to face a horrible death and was able to move forward through the coming suffering because he believed in the memory of Before and the promise of After.

As he entered the final hours of his life here on earth, he could look at the present moment with the satisfaction that he had completed his assignment, accomplished the task to the very last detail. Jesus had fulfilled his God-given purpose – the very reason for which he had come.

As a Christ followers, you and I also have a Before and an After. The memory of the many ways God’s Spirit has brought life to us, guided us, taught us, and cared for us – that’s our Before. We have the promise of eternal life, of heaven, of meeting the Father and spending eternity with Jesus the Son – that’s our After.

But we also have a God-given purpose, a God-assigned task Between our Before and our After. It is our greatest privilege to have been placed where we are and when we are to be people God can use to serve him and others. Let’s use our Between well!

Prayer:

Father, Thanks for reminding me today of my Before and After. I purpose to follow the leading of your Holy Spirit in completing the work you have assigned me to do. Please keep me conscious and thankful for the privilege of the purpose you’ve given me “Between.” I thank you that After, you have prepared a place for me. Amen.

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