Saturday, November 19, 2011

Look You in the Eye

There isn't necessarily any theological basis for this or anything, there isn't even any reason to think this would ever happen.  But what if you spent eternity in the kind of heaven you designed while here on earth?  What if heaven operated on the laws and rules you live your life by?  What if people treated each other just as you've treated others in this life?  

Would you want to live in a heaven like that?  

I think it might look way too much like this world.

I pretty much spent most of my life living a sort of Christian "escapism" life.  One where Good is unattainable. Where we're no good, but forgiven, and heaven will be a place where it all gets better.  

I think those things are true but...  

I think this can be toxic thinking for a Jesus follower if it leads to some sort of fatalism about our potential in this world. Or believing we simply can't actually do any good that our Father would be proud of.  

Listening to one of the songs on the new Switchfoot album, Vice Verses, called "Where I Belong, -a couple of verses made me think.  They go like this:

And on that final day I day I die
I want to hold my head up high
I want to tell You that I tried
To live it like a song

And when I reach the other side 
I want to look You in the eye
And know that I've arrived
In a world where I belong

For most of my life I felt so strongly that there is nothing I could do that I would ever be proud of in front of the Lord for.  According to at least one parable Jesus told, the character representing God says, "well done good and faithful servant.". This has always bothered me because I could just never see God saying anything like that to me.  But I guess now I'm starting to think there is such thing as doing a good job in the kingdom of God.  Not a perfect job, or a job that saves our souls, but a job that is good, verses bad.  

These lyrics have really challenged me to live a life that I can at least say "I tried my hardest" about.  There is a certain honesty reached that we don't have to feel ashamed of when we try our best, regardless of the results.  My best may be terribly ineffective but it is still my best and far from my worst. And I can live with the truth of knowing I tried.  That truth really appeals to me. So, inspired by the idea that all is not lost already I will TRY like the lyrics say, to life my life "like a song," -this one.