Saturday, September 1, 2007

The Bundle of Life

“…but the soul of my lord shall be bound in the bundle of life with the Lord thy God…” (1 Samuel 25:29)

I was told of a friend who recently found out that a loved one is near death. This individual was so devastated that he (she) became violently ill himself (herself). I told the person who shared this bad news with me that I was afraid the individual would be devastated without this particular family member. As I pondered this later, a verse in Genesis leaped to mind. One of Jacob’s sons, speaking of the bond between his father and youngest brother, said, “…his life is bound up in the lad’s life” (Gen.44:30). In both cases—Jacob and my friend—the reaction to the loss of the loved one would be literally life-threatening (v.31).

I know what it is to lose a father and mother from this earth, but I have not yet known the grief of losing a mate or a child, and perhaps I never will. I do know, in Jacob’s case, the bond between him and two of his sons (Joseph and Benjamin) caused him, and those around him, much unnecessary heartache. In light of this, perhaps it would be good to remind ourselves of this Biblical principle: My life should not be centered on anything or anyone that can ever be lost to me. This has nothing to do with love and everything to do with reality. If what I see and feel is more real to me than the invisible, ever-present Jesus Christ, and my never-ending relationship with Him, then I will always be in danger of clinging to temporary substitutes.

Abigail described David as a man “bound in the bundle of life” with the Lord. You and I would say he was all wrapped up in God! This did not mean he was incapable of human love, by any means. If anything, to me, measured love that asks no more of the beloved than what can rightfully be expected, makes a deep, abiding love that will warm both hearts.

When Jesus said in Matthew 10 that anyone who loves father, mother, son or daughter more than Him is not worthy of Him, He didn’t just mean we should be willing to leave them for His sake, but also to lose them.

You’re right; “Easy preaching but hard living.”

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