Summary: Our greatest hope is in the resurrection and eternal life, not in the things of this world.

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Life’s Greatest Hope

by Pastor Jim May

The greatest hope that we have is the hope of the resurrection. All that I am, all that I will ever be, my hopes, my dreams, my life’s work, and all of my plans are centered upon that one single hope. Because I am convinced that there is a resurrection and that I have eternal life, I can cast aside the things of this world, taking only what is necessary to live in the manner that Jesus has called me to do. I cannot get attached to many of the things of this life. It isn’t that I wouldn’t want them, or perhaps that I would not have the finer things of life, if that opportunity should come, but that can never be my central focus.

There was a time in my life, about 15 years ago, when my focus was changed for a long time. I chased after the American Dream of wealth, prosperity and financial independence. I seemed to be on a fast track to great financial success and I am convinced that if things had continued to happen as they did in those first few years of chasing that dream, today I would not be standing here before you as a minister, or as a pastor. I would be out there with the rich and “not-so-famous”, enjoying the life of leisure and luxury.

But I wonder if I would still possess eternal life? It is not impossible to be rich and still be saved because I know a lot of people who are, but I’m not sure that I would have been.

Have you ever seen things in life that you just wanted so bad that you could taste it? That’s what I saw in financial independence. I saw a great chance to become debt free and have the things in life that make this life better! Now that is a worthy goal and one that all of us should aim for. Don’t you just hate the monthly bills that seem to come twice a month and there isn’t enough money to go around. It seems that the harder we work, and the more we try, we just keep getting further behind.

I am reminded of the passage written by the prophet Haggai in Haggai 1:5-7, "Now therefore thus saith the LORD of hosts; Consider your ways. Ye have sown much, and bring in little; ye eat, but ye have not enough; ye drink, but ye are not filled with drink; ye clothe you, but there is none warm; and he that earneth wages earneth wages to put it into a bag with holes. Thus saith the LORD of hosts; Consider your ways."

But it wasn’t just being debt free that I wanted. I also wanted to be able to feel successful and to have the things that so many other people have. I wanted, and I still desire, to have the boats, bigger and nicer home, a camp on the river, free time to just kick back and enjoy life without a care in the world, and maybe a really nice diesel pusher 45’ Prevost Motor Coach to travel across America.

There are so many good things out there that I would love to have, but for me, the price of having them was just too high. It’s not the price in money that I’m talking about. Money can be made. I know that a lot of people just can’t see it, but there is money all around you just waiting to be picked of the tree, if you will.

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