Things Left Behind

A friend called and wanted me to meet him at a rental property he owned. When I met him there, I encountered a ‘surreal’ situation. The house was completely furnished. Couches, chairs, tables, lamps, beds, dressers, appliances, a large screen TV, rugs, and more. Dishes and cooking utensils were in the cabinets, there was food in the refrigerators, cupboards were stocked with supplies, and there were clothes in the closets.

Now for the surreal part. The couple who had lived there abruptly moved out leaving everything behind. They vacated the property over a year and a half ago. There had been no subsequent communication. My friend needed to clear everything out of the house so it could be refurbished and made ready to rent or sale.

Surveying the situation, I recalled Biblical accounts of people suddenly moved out of their life’s circumstances leaving everything behind. A phrase from the Gospel of Luke echoed in my mind: “Then who will get what you have prepared for yourself?” (Luke 12:20, NIV).

Later that evening I had time for more serious reflection. As we move through the days of our lives, we are never really certain when we will depart this life for eternity. Scripture gives us this warning, “Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring” (Proverbs 27:1, NIV). When the moment of death comes, ”No one has power over the spirit to retain the spirit, And no one has power in the day of death” (Ecclesiastes 8:8, NKJV).

When the summons comes from God, we will drop everything and leave all things acquired or accumulated behind. We will hurry off for our appointment with judgement. “And as it is appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment” (Hebrews 9:27, NKJV). A person ought to be aware of what will take place at judgement. John said, “And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God, and books were opened. “And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, by the things which were written in the books” (Revelation 20:12, NKJV).

I determined, in those moments of reflection, not to be like the man Jesus described in the Gospel of Luke. That man said, And I’ll say to myself, ‘You have plenty of grain laid up for many years. Take life easy; eat, drink and be merry.’ But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your life will be demanded from you. Then who will get what you have prepared for yourself?’” (Luke 12:19-20, NKJV). I want to follow the Lord’s advice not to lay up treasures here on earth to be left behind, but rather to lay up treasures in heaven where they will be waiting for me (Matthew 6:19-21, NKJV).

There is a poignant phrase in Eastern Kentucky that I remember from my youth: ‘You never see a U-Haul pulled behind a hearse.’  Scripture says, “For we brought nothing into this world, and it is certain we can carry nothing out” (1 Timothy 6:7, NKJV).

Only one life, ’twill soon be past, Only what’s done for Christ will last.” – C.T. Studd

~ Brother Roy

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