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Living From an Eternal Perspective

Nancy Taylor Tate

“And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called, according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28

In John 16:33b Jesus said, “In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.” There are many problems in this life, that’s for sure! Yet Jesus, the overcomer, lives inside us! We have His strength to draw on, that come what may, we too might overcome.

We can experience troubles, like a car breaking down, which are just part of this life. But there are also things some endure as a part of our Christian witness.

Paul went through tremendous hardship for the sake of the gospel:

“Of the Jews five times received I forty stripes save one. Thrice was I beaten with rods, once was I stoned, thrice I suffered shipwreck, a night and a day I have been in the deep;

“In journeyings often, in perils of waters, in perils of robbers, in perils by mine own countrymen, in perils by the heathen, in perils in the city, in perils in the wilderness, in perils in the sea, in perils among false brethren; 

“In weariness and painfulness, in watchings often, in hunger and thirst, in fastings often, in cold and nakedness.” 2 Corinthians 11:24-27

Some who are reading this have paid a price for their faith. Others may live in places where the cost of being a Christian is increasing. In view of the hardships Paul endured for the sake of his loyalty to the gospel and zeal for the glory of God, he asserted:

“If in this life only we have hope in Christ, we are of all men most miserable.” 1 Corinthians 15:19

But! Paul lived from an eternal perspective. He saw beyond the hard times, into what  God was doing in the midst of the difficulties he faced, things of eternal value.

Paul saw an eternal purpose being fulfilled in those who were being touched through his life, and he confidently declared the glory of God yet to be seen through many giving thanks to the Lord.

“For all things are for your sakes, that the abundant grace might through the thanksgiving of many redound to the glory of God.” 2 Corinthians 4:15

 Because of his deep desire for the glory of God to be seen, Paul continued with hope and expectation, counting his present suffering as nothing in the light of eternity.

“For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day.

“For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory;

“While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.” 2 Corinthians 4:16-18

When we face a situation that in itself is not good, be it just a part of this life and this world’s systems, or perhaps a price we pay for the sake of our testimony, as we trust the Lord, He will in some way cause good to come from it. God is faithful to His Word!

We can train ourselves to look for the good. It is always there, though sometimes in hidden ways which are hard to see, or which have not yet appeared.

“And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called, according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28

“Be happy and glad, for a great reward is kept for you in heaven. This is how the prophets who lived before you were persecuted.” Matthew 5:12 GNB

None of us would choose a difficult path, that is for sure! Yet as we come through difficult situations, if we respond rightly, not only is Christ glorified, we mature and grow as we also learn and become wiser.

May this be our burning desire: “Christ in (us) the hope of glory!” (Colossians 1:27). That as He is, so we may be in this life (1 John 4:17). This is the Lord’s desire for each of our lives!

May our vision go beyond the things of this life, to living from an eternal perspective. For the things in this life are temporal, but God’s kingdom is eternal.

“Thy kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and thy dominion endureth throughout all generations.” Psalm 145:13

And there is given him dominion, and glory, and a kingdom, that all people, nations, and languages, should serve him: his dominion is an everlasting dominion, which shall not pass away, and his kingdom that which shall not be destroyed.” Daniel 7:14

The kingdom of God will be established on the earth. However, today His desire is to do an eternal work within each of our hearts.

He is the King! He rules in the land of our lives through our submission to Him. As we yield to Him, His throne is established in our hearts. Through just “one yes at a time,” His government is established within us. As we do, that which is of eternal value is taking place.

What enables me to yield to the Lord, that His higher rule might take place in my life? Where now it is no longer my adamic nature who is ruling, but God?

There are several truths that impacted my life helping me to see things which are a part of this life in a more meaningful way. These truths increased my eternal perception, putting a desire in me to yield to the Lord more fully, and His workings in my life.

Activities  otherwise mundane, became more meaningful. Hurtful situations became more fruitful. Never, as I yielded to the Lord, have I regretted it. Always, looking back, I was glad I did!

God’s Word promises, “He shall see of the travail of his soul, and shall be satisfied: by his knowledge shall my righteous servant justify many; for he shall bear their iniquities” (Isaiah 53:11).

What a beautiful promise! It was through Hattie Hammond that I came to understand there is a Spirit-given unveiling of calvary available that we can believe for, which creates in our hearts a passion for Christ to see the fruit of His suffering and be satisfied.

After I heard this, I began praying earnestly that this passion to see Him satisfied would burn in my heart as a fire, and that all that was contrary would be burned out of me.

I also heard John Wright Follette speak of our love for Christ becoming sufficient enough to allow the cancelation of our own lives, for His. That truth touched my heart too, so I began praying for that divine displacement to take place within my life, that His life might have preeminence.

Then I reflected on Paul’s words in 1 Corinthians 2:1-2, “I came to you, came not with excellency of speech or of wisdom … For I determined not to know any thing among you, save Jesus Christ, and him crucified.”

I prayed for that reduction in my life too, that my faith would truly rest in the power of the cross, and in His resurrection life and power.

As these deep desires were imparted into my spirit, it began to change the way I saw things. As my desire for the glory of God to be seen increased, what He was doing became more predominant. Other things became less in comparison.

These “eternal perspectives” and more can be instilled into our hearts through faith and prayer. They enlarge our vision and encourage us, as we walk through life seeing in a greater way not just circumstances, but that which God is doing today.

The first time worship is mentioned in the Bible is when Abraham, in faith of the faithfulness of God and His eternal purposes, put his all, Isaac, on the altar.

As we too worship, may the Lord build His throne within our hearts and lives. May we draw on Christ’s strength as we continue on, in hope and expectation, confident of the faithfulness of God.

May that passion, to see the Lord’s purposes fulfilled, rule in our hearts, causing everything else to fall into its rightful place.