Yesterday I blogged about this picture, and I told about its role in our dining room. Thinking about it some more, it occurs to me that it has another story to tell. This story begins with questions, and the questions themselves can tell us quite a lot about life.
Who are these people? I have no clue. I don’t know their names, I don’t know their relationship, I don’t know where they lived or what they did. I don’t know how this portrait ended up in an antique shop. I don’t know why it isn’t hanging in the home of a great-great-grandchild. I don’t know if these people ever even had any children; they are entirely a mystery to me.
With all of those unanswered questions, there are few things that I can say about these two iives except that they lived, they loved, they had hopes and dreams, sorrows and joys, sickness and health, likes and dislikes. They were real human beings just like you and I and yet who remembers anything about them?
Think of how much time, energy and effort people put into their lives on this earth. How much ambition and hard work we all put into living this life… and then what? A hundred years later all is forgotten; what’s the point?
By contrast, how much time, energy and effort do we put into things that really count for something? How much time, energy and effort do we put into things that have eternal consequences? How much time, energy and effort do we put into things that have eternal consequences for the benefit of others?
There really is a point to this life on earth, and we have been called to that purpose. All of us are called to spread the good news of the Gospel of Christ to a dark world. All of us are called to help other people secure the gift of eternal life in Christ. All of us are called to help others become disciples of Christ, and these things really count for something real.
Each of us is called to live our lives serving others in a way that advances God’s purpose, and God’s purpose is eternal; it will not pass away as this life and this world will. In a hundred years, this world may forget all about us, but our legacy will live on as a testimony for Christ, and our destination will be the very presence of God Himself.