Athlete, We Need to Know How to Face Finality
Ezekiel 7:2-4 (NIV)
Son of man, this is what the Sovereign Lord says to the land of Israel: “The end! The end has come … The end is now upon you ... Then you will know that I am the LORD.”
What’s something you wish would have never ended? A moment, event, game, season, career, relationship coming to mind? Was it truly beautiful, sweet, powerful, almost divine? Did it hurt to see it end?
Conversely, have you ever wished for an end to a tough journey? Has it happened?
The Bible is really good at properly helping us remember the past, deal with the present and face the future. It helps us see our story rightly. Throughout the book of Ezekiel we see this kind of coaching consistently playing out.
Here’s what emerges in chapter 7. Take these words to heart.
EVERYTHING HAS AN END. No matter how good (or bad) a story might be, the last two words are always “The End.” And as much as we wish we could play, hoop, run or make a moment last forever, the scoreboard turns off.
Same goes for an embarrassing loss or crushing defeat. Every alpha in this world has an omega. Settle into this truth (Ecclesiastes 3:1).
DESTINATION MATTERS. As much as process and journey matter in life, destination matters too. It shapes our story. It defines and refines the process. We were made for eternity. Let’s keep living in light of this.
THINK ABOUT LIFE AS CHAPTERS AND STORY. Chapters have drama. Stories have endings. Chapters offer no final judgement. Story does. Both offer redemption. Both offer future hope. Both bear reward. View this well.
THE WISE PREPARE. They get their house in order. They prepare for final judgment and expect that ultimate wins await.
Fools don’t. They are blind to consequences, unsteady, only living in the moment. So walk by faith, not by sight (2 Corinthians 5:7; 1 John 2:28).
ENDS HELP US SEE THE LORD. They help us see beyond sight. They help us see more. When we come to the end of ourselves, we often see the LORD. So embrace this strong spiritual dividend that finality brings (Joshua 24:7).
That’s a lot to chew on!
Reflect: Am I facing well the finality of life, inevitable judgment and the subject of eternity? If so, what makes me think so? If not, why not? What fear of finality might I be carrying (Hebrews 9:27; Proverbs 28:1)?
Is “living with the end in mind” getting enough playing time in me? Is it shaping my use of time, talents, and treasures? How confident am I of my redemption in Christ and eternal reward from Him (Romans 8:31-39; Philippians 1:6)?
A prayer to consider: O Father in Heaven, help me keep “things above” in mind and face well the finality of life … just like Jesus. Let this govern at least one move I make today.
Don’t let me get stuck in the past, present or future. I want to be properly prepared for final judgment. The end is always nearer than I think.
Thank You for writing a great story in me and through me by your Spirit, through your Son. Keep going. I’m Yours! Amen.