Our televisions and newspapers have been filled recently with stories of natural disasters around the world. Our hearts go out and our prayers go up to God for those who have been devastated by these happenings. It may take years for life to return to normal for many of these families.
The earthquakes, tornadoes and floods that have occurred are not new things – they are a part of life. They serve to show us not to place so much emphasis on physical things, for they can be destroyed in a few seconds.
Some forget about God – especially when things are going well – and they start relying on things rather than relying on God. A study of the Bible shows that this behavior is not new. Man has many times made this tragic mistake.
God has blessed mankind with so many things, but he has always wanted man to realize that those physical blessings are only for a little while and that we need to be putting emphasis on spiritual things.
Jesus once said, “Lay not up for yourselves treasures upon earth, where moth and rust doth corrupt, and where thieves break through and steal: But lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust doth corrupt, and where thieves do not break through nor steal: For where your treasure is, there will your heart be also” (Matt. 6:19 – 21). It is not wrong to provide for our families, but the problem comes when we start leaving God out of the picture.
The account of Lot in Genesis 13 shows how a person can think so much of the physical things that they forget to think of what is best spiritually. Lot looked upon the “well watered plains of the Jordan and choose to take his family there.” In his vision he only saw fertile fields and plenty of water for his livestock. He did not think about what might befall him and his family if they went to this area.
Just a few chapters later we find what a terrible mistake Lot had made. Lot should have looked at what affect his choice was going to have on his family, but he failed to do so.
We must consider our future beyond this life. God has prepared a place for those who will obey him. A good example of one who obeyed God is Noah.
Noah shows us an example of faith, “But Noah found grace in the eyes of the Lord” (Gen. 6:8), “… Noah was a just man and perfect in his generations and Noah walked with God” (Gen. 6:9). “Thus did Noah; according to all that God commanded him, so did he” (Gen. 6:22).
One of the great lessons from Noah is that when he learned what God wanted him to do, he did it. He followed God before the need arose to build the ark. Then when God gave him the instructions on how to build the ark, he followed them without addition or subtraction. You see he believed God and followed him even when most all others failed.
Life is fleeting, things can change, life can be gone. And so we must look beyond this world to eternity.
James wrote, “Go to now, ye that say, Today or tomorrow we will go into such a city, and continue there a year, and buy and sell, and get gain: Whereas ye know not what shall be on the morrow. For what is your life? It is even a vapor that appeareth for a little time, and then vanisheth away. For that ye ought to say, If the Lord will, we shall live, and do this, or that” (James 4:13 – 15).
Study and obey God’s word while you have the opportunity.