Every Person's Calling to Build G-d's Kingdom
Painted glass vase by Carmen Rose Shenk.
I came upon this quotation which seems to recast significantly the purpose we so diligently seek for our lives. It is worth reflecting on these truths in a world where our retirement funds are dissapearing, our masterpieces fade and our trophies tarnish. There is a better place to invest our time and treasure... that Kingdom that was the hope of the faithful in Hebrews 11:
"But what what we can and must do in the present, if we are obedient to the gospel, if we are following Jesus, and if we are indwelt, energized, and directed by the Spirit, is to build for the kingdom. This brings me back to 1 Corinthians 15:58 once more: what you do for the Lord is not in vain. You are not oiling the wheels of a machine that's about to roll over a cliff. You are not restoring a great painting that's shortly going to be thrown on the fire. You are not planting roses in a garden that's about to be dug up for a building site. You are -- strange though it may seem, almost as hard to believe as the resurrection itself -- accomplishing something that will become in due course part of G-d's new world. Every act of love, gratitude and kindness; every work of art or music inspired by the love of G-d and delight in the beauty of his creation; every minute spent teaching a severely handicapped child to read or walk; every act of care and nurture, of comfort and support, for one's fellow human beings and for that matter one's fellow nonhuman creatures; and of course every prayer, all Spirit-led teaching, every deed that spreads the gospel, builds up the church, embraces and embodies holiness rather than corruption, and makes the name of Jesus honored in the world -- all of this will find its way, through the resurrecting power of G-d, into the new creation that G-d will one day make. That is the logic of the mission of G-d." -- N. T. Wright, Surprised by Hope, Rethinking Heaven, the Resurrection, and the Mission of the Church, page 208.