WILL WE BE REMEMBERED WITH THE SAINTS
36 Some faced jeers and flogging, and even chains and imprisonment. 37 They were put to death by stoning; they were sawed in two; they were killed by the sword. They went about in sheepskins and goatskins, destitute, persecuted and mistreated—38 the world was not worthy of them. They wandered in deserts and mountains, living in caves and in holes in the ground. 39 These were all commended for their faith, yet none of them received what had been promised, 40 since God had planned something better for us so that only together with us would they be made perfect. Hebrews 11:36-40
Is there truly an easier way to ask the question for today, "Will we be remembered with the saints?" All of my life I have always read about those in the scriptures who lived their lives to the fullest for Christ. I can only imagine that they never thought that their lives would be remembered for what it is actually remembered for. For example, I don't think that Cain woke up one day and said I am going to be remembered for committing the first murder in the Bible. I guarantee that Sampson never thought that he would be remembered as a Judge whose strength came from his hair. I also don't believe that Jonah would have ever imagined the stories that would be told of his journey of not following God's plan and winding up in the belly of a giant fish. I know that some of you think that it would be a whale, but it is actually never said what type of fish it could have been. All I am saying is that for many of us today, we look at the people of the past and praise them for what God was able to do through them or find teachable moments that followed them all throughout their lives. Each a part of the plan that has led us to today. So how will our stories be added to the stories of the saints?
All I am saying is that our stories will be told through the generations a little differently than the way we learned about David, Moses, Noah, Gideon, Sarah, Rebecca, Mary & Joseph, the Disciples, Paul, and the list could continue on and on and on. The saints of old have found
their place in the Bible as a reminder of faith and devotion, struggle and strength, chaos and
joy. But what about us? Who will honestly continue to tell our story if we keep the faith and change the world for God? I know that is probably something that we would not be thinking about as well, but I will tell you that the history books will not be able to do justice for the lives of the saints of our time. Billy Graham, Martin Luther King Jr., Mother Teresa to name a few will have a larger mark on this generation than what the history books may say. And what is to come for the next generation of saints that will carry the Gospel story in this world that is so desperate for the LIGHT? Multiple times I have said that none of them and none of us would ever think about the opportunity that of how our stories may impact the world going forward. The saints never thought that they were going to be saints. The ones who carried the Gospel were never worried about their place in history and that is what makes their stories so valuable. Their inability to understand the impact their lives would have on generations to come completely blows my mind if we were walking with them on say no particular Friday afternoon. None of them worried about how they were going to be remembered because they were more worried on how others would be able to fully remember the story of the Gospel of Jesus.
So as we read the last part of the Faith chapter in Hebrews 11, we see the author so adamantly remind us that they were only living out their life with different expectations and then God showed up. They were only worried about trying to figure it all out and then God decided to show how their story was going to impact the world. We see the battles that they faced with jeers, flogging, chains and imprisonment. They faced death in the worst ways, and yet they still couldn't believe how their little sacrifice would be able to influence the generations that would follow them. The writer goes on to say that the world was not worthy of them. What a powerful statement, but one that none of them would have ever believed. It is so crazy to think that those who faced such a treacherous journey would be considered the leaders who lit the way for us to follow. Why are they seen as such an important part of the Christian story? Simple... FAITH. One of the greatest lines that were written is the last two lines of today's scripture. The writer states, "These were all commended for their faith, yet none of them received what had been promised, since God had planned something better for us so that only together with us would they be made perfect." These are the saints that carried the Gospel not knowing what was coming next. They had no idea of the integral part God had in store for them to play. But yet, they continued to live their life for the promises that were to come.
So I want to close today with asking the same question that started today's blog. Will we be remembered with the saints? How will our story add to the story of those that have gone before us and those who come behind can still see the thread of Christ throughout all
generations. I know that we will never understand the impact that we have made until we are long gone, but I pray that we will also live out our lives for the glory of God and not the
expectation of what we will obtain. It has never been about us, but God is able to use us to be a vessel that continues to carry out the legacy that needs to be passed on. We too will have hopes and dreams of what our future holds, and we too will never reach or fullest expectations. But as it was with the saints that went before us, we will receive something greater that God has set out in advance. We will never know what that is until our journey is complete. So I say all of that to say this one last thing. Don't worry about the mark you are going to leave behind. God is going to use it to make an impact that is needed for such a time as this. Live out your life to the glory of God and do all that you can to make an impact on others that you encounter on a daily basis. Maybe one day our words will be read and others will see and understand how God was working today in preparation for what tomorrow may hold. However God decides to use your story is up to God, but each day we have the choice to live it fully for the glory of God.