Why does gravity have to pull us down as we age? Why can’t we age in reverse direction, growing more taut, smooth, and muscular with the passing of each new decade? Certainly, we older people would appreciate looking “young” more than the younger generation who so effortlessly appears so.
Why do we have to slump and sag as we age? Why can’t we grow ever stronger, sleeker, and more powerful through the years?
Perhaps we can. But to do so we need to look a little deeper than our bodily exteriors.
In the New Testament there seems to be a direct correlation between the decaying of our bodies and the renewing of our souls. In 2 Corinthians 4:16 the Apostle Paul said, “…though outwardly we are wasting away, yet inwardly we are being renewed day by day.”
It seems that our bodies and spirits are capable of moving in two different directions at the same time, down toward the ground and up toward the heavens.
It’s almost as if we’re walking billboards, advertising eternal (zoe) life in the midst of natural (bios) life.
We touch that eternal life in transcendent moments—in worship, with loved ones, through art, in nature—and we are convinced that we were created to live forever with the God who loves us most. But then we duck back into the rat race and feel the inexorable pull of gravity, drawing us ever closer to the grave.
Perhaps a perspective shift would help us. Rather than bemoaning the pull of old age and frantically trying to preserve our youth, what if we set our spirits free to soar? What if we invested in the life that Jesus spoke of, an eternal kind of life that begins in His presence and extends beyond our mortality? That’s the kind of life we were destined for.
So go ahead and do your push-ups, stick to your cardio, and drink lots of water—but remember that real life is upward, where your spirit naturally soars.
In our recent men’s retreat there was much talk of honor, gallantry, and living as noble, courageous men of God. It got me thinking of the literal knights’ code of honor from the Middle Ages. This code continues to stir my own soul so I wanted to pass it on to all of you. Enjoy!
- To never do outrage or murder
- Always to flee treason
- To by no means be cruel but to give mercy unto him who asks for mercy
- To always do ladies, gentlewomen, and widows succor
- To never force ladies, gentlewomen, or widows
- Not to take up battles in wrongful quarrels or for love of worldly goods
- To never lay down arms
- To seek after wonders
- When called upon, to defend the rights of the weak with all of one’s strength
- To injure no one
- Not to attack on another
- To fight for the safety of one’s country
- To give one’s life for one’s country
- To seek nothing before honor
- Never to lose faith for any reason
- To practice religion most diligently
- To grant hospitality to anyone, each according to his ability
I can’t explain exactly how love works, but I’ve been deeply in love with Jessica for twenty years now.
I can’t fully explain how a daughter is able to utterly melt a father’s heart; however, all Maddie and Amber have to do to get their way with me is play the daughter/daddy card.
I would fail miserably if someone asked me give a technical explanation for the law of gravity, and yet I could demonstrate it perfectly, simply by standing still.
Some of the most complex things in life are beyond adequate description—they can’t be fully articulated in the human language—they have to be known.
I can’t explain God to you.
I can talk about Him. I can tell you my experiences. I can point to creation and some things that could only have come from His limitless imagination. I can quote Scriptures and preach sermons, but at the end of the day, God must be known.
He isn’t an idea or a hypothesis or the Jedi’s impersonal “Force.” He is a person—He is THE person—and Jesus showed us what He looks like.
The Apostle Paul said, “In Christ all the fullness of the Deity lives in bodily form.” (Colossians 2:9)
The Apostle John said, “The Word (Jesus) became flesh and made His dwelling among us. And we have seen His glory.” (John 1:14)
The Apostle Peter said, “We were eyewitnesses of His majesty.” (2 Peter 1:16)
And what about you? What would you say? I know you can’t explain Him, but who do you know Him to be?
He is waiting to be known, and those who seek Him find Him.
At this month’s men’s retreat, Joe Gasparian shared a powerful story of how God recently woke him up in the middle of the night with the persistent thought, “Get up and write.” Although not naturally given to writing poetry, Joe obeyed the prompting and these powerful words poured out of his soul and onto the page.
My passion for Christ is for real,
for his mercy and grace I shall not fear.
My passion for Christ comes at a perfect time
when he healed my heart, no matter the crime.
My passion for Christ must be strong,
because he died on the cross for what I did wrong.
My passion for Christ must be an example
to show my son there is an answer.
My passion for Christ is all about his love
and how it fits me, just like a perfect glove.
My passion for Christ is in his Word;
The book tells no lies and there is nothing absurd.
My passion for Christ is to show people his grace
that He loves us all, no matter when we join the race.
My passion for Christ can be summed up in one sentence:
I gave him my heart and soul-
He gave me repentance.
By Joseph Gasparian