Pleasing God, Making Disciples of Jesus Christ

The Difference-Maker

REVELATION 21:1-4 – Then I saw a new heaven and a new earth, for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and the sea was no more. And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride adorned for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Behold, the dwelling place of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.”

Let’s face it .Life hurts. Life is hard. Life is full of trials, temptations, and tears. Yes, there are good times in life, but if we were to put all the sorrows and pain in life on one side of a scale, and then problem-free, happy times, and suffering-less seasons on the other side, the tip would be toward the “bad” side of life. That is the reality of living in a sin-cursed world in rebellion to our good and holy God. But for the Christian, perspective is different. Way different. Let’s look at the difference between the non-Christian and Christian when it comes to life and after life.

First, the unbeliever is left to his or herself to cope with life’s difficulties, and that doesn’t work! Hence all the things an unsaved person does to try to find comfort, satisfaction, and contentment. The list is long . .. drugs, alcohol, pleasures, relationships, sensual desires fulfilled, vacations, travel, money, vocation, hobbies, nest egg for retirement . . . again the list is long and all lead to what King Solomon wrote “Vanity, vanity, all is vanity” (Ecclesiastes 1:2). And when it comes to death? An unbeliever standing over the freshly dug grave of a loved one is gripped with hopeless finality with tears flowing and knowing no comfort. But now the difference-maker . .

For the believer, we are taken out of ourselves for everything. Comfort, contentment, hope, and everything else we need for life in this difficult world is found in the fullness of the Lord Jesus Christ. Here are two pillars of scriptural truth to affirm we have all we need in Christ– “My grace is sufficient for you” and “For in him the whole fullness of deity dwells bodily, and you have been filled in him, who is the head of all rule and authority” (2 Corinthians 12:9; Colossians2:9-10). And when standing over that grave like the unbeliever? We hear today’s scripture. We hear the Words of the One who said, “I am the resurrection and the life. Whoever believes in me, though he die, yet shall he live”(John 11:25). Yes, we cry. Yes, we shed tears, but we look beyond the grave to the One who will wipe them all away.

The difference-maker is the Lord Jesus. May we learn more and more of His power and love making all the difference in our lives that others might see the difference He may make in their lives as well!

PRAYER: “Father, I praise You for Your promise of a day and place where all pain and sorrow are banished forever.”

QUOTE: “Every tear we shed, God knows. Every sorrow we endure God knows. He will be the God of all comfort in all.”

Because of Him,

Pastor Jim