“By the very act of arguing, you awake the patient’s reason; and once it is awake, who can foresee the result? Even if a particular train of thought can be twisted so as to end in our favour, you will find that you have been strengthening in your patient the fatal habit of attending to universal issues and withdrawing his attention from the stream of immediate sense experiences. Your business is to fix his attention on the stream. Teach him to call it ‘real life’ and don’t let him ask what he means by ‘real’.”
– C.S. Lewis, Screwtape Letters
Dear Traveler –
It’s hard to think of a struggle more enticing than the one Uncle Screwtape applauds here. Life is distracting, and we are so easily sucked into it’s rapid flow.
But the Scripture tells us a different story about what is true – a story that pull our heads up from the events of daily life and fixes our eyes, “not on what is seen, but on what is unseen” (2 Corinthians 4:18).
If you’re like me – prone to the struggle of a “busyness” that overwhelms and shoves all priorities aside, hold fast to these truths and anchor yourself in true reality.
\\ The Wait \\
Remember those who waited and longed and suffered for thousands of years, desperate for the hope we have within us now.
“The days are coming,” declares the Lord,
“when I will make a new covenant
with the people of Israel
and with the people of Judah.
It will not be like the covenant
I made with their ancestors
when I took them by the hand
to lead them out of Egypt,
because they broke my covenant,
though I was a husband to them,”
declares the Lord.
“This is the covenant I will make with the people of Israel
after that time,” declares the Lord.
“I will put my law in their minds
and write it on their hearts.
I will be their God,
and they will be my people.
\\ The Cost \\
Remember the great love that was poured out on you – that one completely innocent would suffer for your sake.
“To this you were called, because Christ suffered for you, leaving you an example, that you should follow in his steps.
“He committed no sin, and no deceit was found in his mouth.”
When they hurled their insults at him, he did not retaliate; when he suffered, he made no threats. Instead, he entrusted himself to him who judges justly. “He himself bore our sins” in his body on the cross, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; “by his wounds you have been healed.” For “you were like sheep going astray,” but now you have returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls.”
\\ The Reward \\
Remember where it all ends.
Then I saw “a new heaven and a new earth,” for the first heaven and the first earth had passed away, and there was no longer any sea. I saw the Holy City, the new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, prepared as a bride beautifully dressed for her husband. And I heard a loud voice from the throne saying, “Look! God’s dwelling place is now among the people, and he will dwell with them. They will be his people, and God himself will be with them and be their God. ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away.”
He who was seated on the throne said, “I am making everything new!” Then he said, “Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true.”
Praying for you all – that when life looks more important than Christ, that He would anchor you in truth and fill you with joy.
May we all see Him as we journey,