Dear Church Family,
Are you ever overcome with nostalgia? As you get older, does it happen more or less frequently? Nostalgia is defined by the Oxford Dictionary as “a sentimental longing or wistful affection for the past.” Does that definition pretty well match up with your life’s disposition? Apparently, the word “nostalgia” was formed in translating different words communicating homesickness. Is there a time in your life you wish you could go back to and stay? Is there a place from your past where you would love to return for good?
In our particular culture, youth is prized. We talk about people being “over the hill,” meaning their lives both in duration and quality are on the downward descent from then on. We look back with idealized fondness of what we remember as our “glory days” that have since come and gone. Now, there’s nothing wrong with having treasured memories. And, most of you would attest to the fact that getting older is difficult in a number of ways. Furthermore, we shouldn’t be surprised that our culture puts all its eggs in the “here and now” basket.
However, as Christians, our glory days are not behind us—they are ahead of us. In fact, all the blessings and enjoyment we’ve experienced in this life will pale in comparison to what we will know in the presence of the King. Do you know that regardless of how wonderful our lives have been on this earth the latter glory we will experience will be greater than the former? Do you know that this earth is not our home? We are actually passing through this fallen world to a new earth, free from the presence of sin.
Right now, for most of you, life is getting harder. You seem to be attending more funerals for those you love. Your physical health works against you. The little tasks you used to do without thinking now require a concentrated effort. You look back on your life and wonder where the time went. You look to the future and wonder what will happen to those you leave behind. Instead of learning from your wisdom, the culture keeps trying to teach you how to get with the times.
All of these things, and a host of others, can discourage you and leave you feeling nostalgic. But brothers and sisters, what’s just over the horizon waiting for you is better than anything you have ever known. What’s more is that when we step into the Promised Land, we will never, ever leave. Those glory days will never end. The resurrected Christ has gone on ahead of us, proving the eternal delight we will know with Him is sure.
Christians, don’t believe the lie of the evil one that your past is better than your future. Don’t fix your eyes on what is behind you, but on Who is in front of you; namely, Jesus Christ. He knows the glory of what’s coming doesn’t change the pain of what you’re walking through now. But remembering how the story ends keeps the plot in the right perspective. He will sustain you. He will uphold you. He will preserve you. Remember, the best is yet to come.