Another Fort Collins pastor shared these two verses with me today about the stark contrast between two men named Saul at the end of their lives.
First, King Saul in the Old Testament:
“So Saul died for his breach of faith. He broke faith with the Lord in that he did not keep the command of the Lord, and also consulted a medium, seeking guidance.” 1 Chronicles 10:13
Many years later, Saul of Tarsus (who we know as the Apostle Paul):
“I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.” 2 Timothy 4:7-8
I long to be able to say at the end of my life that I lived well and kept the faith. King Saul started well but finished his life poorly. He broke faith with God. In contrast, Saul of Tarsus started poorly as a persecutor of the church but finished well. He kept the faith. How did Saul of Tarsus stay faithful?
Moses wrote in Psalm 90:12, “So teach us to number our days that we may get a heart of wisdom.” While numbering my days and thinking 20+ years into the future can be helpful, it’s also really abstract and might not affect my practical everyday life. So I’d like for us to consider a shorter increment of time for practicality’s sake – this upcoming Summer.
You’ve probably made most of your plans already, but my fear is that we’ll all get to Labor Day weekend and look back on a summer with a lot of missed opportunities for God. But what if on Labor Day you could look back over the summer and confidently say “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the summer, I have kept the faith?”
I could list a lot of ministry opportunities here, and there are some new ones at the bottom of this email for you to consider. But your circumstances may look different than mine. So I invite you to pray with me this week. Seek the Lord for what he would want for you and your family this summer. What could this season look like if we spent as much time seeking God for gospel and discipleship opportunities as we do planning our summer recreation?
As we go from here, remember that the presence of God is among us wherever we go, and with him at our right hand, we will not be shaken. (Psalm 16:8)