Life in the Fast Track: Fearless Victory Series, Part 3


While taking the airbus to the airport, we passed an ordinary car that was driven by an unusual man. He had both of his hands on his steering wheel, which is quite normal, however with those same two hands he was also holding a newspaper. His attention was focused on the article he was reading, though from time to time he would glance up at the road. He was obviously more interested in his daily newspaper than in his actual driving, more fascinated by the temporal news than the possible eternal consequences of his actions.

Luckily for him, there wasn't that much traffic, but soon he would be facing the whistles and bells of big city driving. What would happen to him then? Would he put his paper aside, or would he persist in his attempts at multitasking? Would he hurt someone with his fascination? Isn't life much more than reading a paper?

As I watched him from the airbus window, I found myself wishing that I could somehow attract his attention, that I could warn him of upcoming danger. But he was too occupied to pay any attention to me. What could be done?

We all have questions about life. Sooner or later each one of us wonders "What good thing must I do to get eternal life?" (Matt 19:16 NIV) It doesn't hurt to plan for the future, as long as it doesn't hinder us in our daily endeavours!

This same simple question was addressed to Jesus one day. And when encouraged to love God the way he should be loved and love His creation with passion as well, this guy thought he had it made! Wasn't he a much better person than Hitler, who hadn't been born yet, or the soon upcoming emperor named Nero? He certainly loved others better than those scum of the world!

With pride he exclaimed excitedly, "All these I have kept," (Matt 19:20 NIV). And then he did the biggest blunder of his life. In his exhilaration he asked the inevitable question, that many of us regret asking: "What do I still lack?"

Why couldn't he have been quiet? Wouldn't we have been all better off?

Or would we?

Jesus' answer flabbergasted him. His blood turned into ice and his breathing became laboured. Had he heard Jesus right? "If you want to be perfect, go, sell your possessions and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven. Then come, follow me." (Matt 19:21 NIV)

"What did you just say? That is an impossible task to fulfill! Who does Jesus think I am?"

But then, would we have reacted any differently?

"When the young man heard this, he went away sad, because he had great wealth." (Matt 19:22 NIV)

Each one of us faces the same choice: The temporal or eternity? The driver with his newspaper included. The temporal is so immediate. It's just a little bit of fun! How can it possibly hurt us?

Or can it?

The issuing discussion among Jesus' disciples is quite revealing, especially after Jesus declared: "I tell you the truth, it is hard for a rich man (or in other words anyone craving for the temporal) to enter the kingdom of heaven. Again I tell you, it is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God." (Matt 19:23-24NIV)

How would we react to such statement? Wouldn't it fill us with despair? Aren't we all guilty with our passion for the here and now? Wouldn't we have reacted just as Jesus' disciples: "Who then can be saved?" (Matt 19:25 NIV)

The answer is simple: No one! We all have these insatiable cravings with the temporal that do us more harm than good!

Jesus' response to this fact, though, would fill anyone with adrenaline. There is hope, but only because God is trying to reach us from on high. "With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible." (Matt 19:26 NIV)

We didn't use to be this way. If we look deep into our hearts, we will discover that something truly went wrong with our race! Deep down we long for pure love. Deep down we long for peace. Deep down we long for God, even though our actions try to tell us otherwise. We have an enemy and this enemy is not God!

But are we willing to trust the One who can make "all things possible", or would we prefer to wander sadly away like the young man? Would we rather concentrate on our immediate needs rather than focus on the road ahead of us? Sooner or later we will face a collision! It can be avoided, but it will depend on our response towards the Eternal.

Eternity or temporal? Which one would you'd rather give up?

Rob Chaffart

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