What would you like said at your funeral? That you’re a great person? Or you knew a great God? That you achieved a lot? Or God used you, and through you, He achieved a lot for eternity?
What kind of legacy will you leave? Will it be that you built stuff, made money, became famous, or had a bunch of kids and grandkids? What validates the fact that you lived? In the terminology of Scripture, what will be the “fruit” that lasts from your life—beyond your life?
In 2 Corinthians 3:1-6, Paul reflects on this central issue: What really matters—fruit that really lasts and makes a difference, in the big picture of life?
Paul says the only thing that matters and lasts is the lives you touched for eternity. It’s all about how God, and only God, can use you to make an eternal difference in the lives of others. Paul says, “It’s a letter of recommendation, written by God Himself” (verse 4). It’s not a long, complicated document with pages of legal footnotes, the tedious overload that “kills your spirit” (verse 6). It’s God’s Holy Spirit working through you to change the eternal destiny of others.
I think about all the theological jargon I had to learn at seminary. Yet no one showed me or told me how you’re used by the Holy Spirit to change lives for eternity. That’s a tragedy. I think it’s a spiritual travesty.
So many churches have people involved in so much activity that has no eternal significance. People hear so many sermons focused on repeating the same doctrinal details Christians have heard forever. People sit there, spiritually constipated. Most aren’t discipled to share Christ, even if they wanted to. Heck, most don’t know how to pray in public—or at least they think so. No wonder churches are failing!
You can get lots of Christians involved to launch the Christmas bazaar, or a bake sale or rummage sale. But to make an eternal difference in the life of a friend? Not so much.
So many have lost divine focus and replaced it with mountains of busyness that, as Paul says, “kills your spirit.”
What will God say about you at your funeral?