But I'm reminded of the words Kristen spoke to our OHOP interns this summer on the first day of classes, "Begin with the end in mind." And in this season of a lot of new beginnings and a lot of uncertainty about the coming week, let alone the next few decades, it is difficult to keep a focus on the end. On eternity. But I know that the Lord has "set eternity in the human heart" (Ecc. 3:11) and this a truth that I can tap into. While I can get so caught up in the details of life, eternity is silently screaming from the inside of my heart.
Over the last month I've been challenged to look at every aspect of my life through the lens of eternity. While I'm focused on the worry of raising "just enough" support to live off of, I've been challenged to look into the next decades of my life and have a financial vision that is bigger than my current season of lack.
And with some of the people that I'm leading, it can be easy to get frustrated with their immaturity, but the Lord is reminding me of His Father's heart and how He views me in light of the end of my story. He reminds me how He views me in strength and beauty instead of my failures and invites me to join Him in His style of leadership looking ahead to the end of their story at their budding, sometimes hidden virtues instead of obvious flaws.
With my own heart, I want to overcome lovelessness, compromise, immorality, idolatry and press on in faithfulness to lay hold of the eternal rewards Jesus laid out in His letters to the churches in Asia minor in Revelations 2-3. I must have a vision for where my heart will be in 1000 years and not the all too often stumblings. How will I love Him better in a decade? In 50 years? In 1000 years? What will my heart look like? This is the vision I want to keep in the forefront of my mind.
God says that part of His plan in the global prayer movement and building a victorious church is setting watchmen on the wall (Isa. 62:6-7). And as a watchman, I want to be one set on the wall for decades, and not to burn out on going hard after God in a few years. And in order to do that I must set my heat on Him. I must posture my heart in humility, in faithfulness, and in light of eternity with Him. To begin with the end in mind. And to finish well in the end.